Does the sovereignty of God have an impact on everyday life?
The sovereignty of God is defined as God's complete control of everything in the universe. Although humans can make genuine choices that have real consequences, ultimately those choices are either caused, or allowed, by God to accomplish His divine, perfect will. Even though the sovereignty of God is often the subject of theological debates, and contentious ones at that, the doctrine of God's sovereignty is a practical one that has significant impact on our daily lives.
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The sovereignty of God has tremendous impact on everyday life in that it removes all cause for worry. When all around us seems to be in chaos and turmoil, it is immensely comforting to know that our powerful and loving God has it all in hand and that nothing happens that is out of His control. Even seemingly terrible things happen to fulfill God's perfect plan and purpose, and everything happens for the good of those who love and trust Him. "And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose" (Romans 8:28).
God's sovereignty also means that what He has foreordained will come to pass because God has the power and ability to do all that He has planned, especially to the benefit of those He loves. This means that not only does God love us, but He has the power and authority to care for us. Those who are part of the family of God can rest in the fact that our God not only plans for our good, He is actually able to work all things for our good by the power of His will.
The sovereignty of God also impacts everyday life in that we can trust God's sanctifying work in us. Christians often feel that they are justified (saved) by God, but maturing in the faith is completely up to them. Christians do play a role in their own maturity through obedience, but it is God who ultimately matures us in the faith. Having sovereignly chosen us for salvation, He also oversees our sanctification by the indwelling Holy Spirit who leads, guides, convicts, and matures those whose hearts He inhabits (Romans 8:9). The sovereignty of God even oversees our occasional sin and rebellion and uses it to further mature us in the faith. We can be confident that "he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ" (Philippians 1:6). Our justification, sanctification, and ultimate glorification are all in the hands of our sovereign God according to His plan from eternity past (Romans 8:29–34; Ephesians 1:4–6).
The sovereignty of God also affects our decision-making. Since God is in control, there is no need for those He loves to be paralyzed by indecision. Knowing that along with His sovereignty, He is also loving, patient, powerful, merciful, gracious, and kind. Therefore, we can make decisions confident in our heavenly Father's faithfulness and His love for His children. The decisions we can and should make in life can be made without fear when we trust that they are overseen by God's sovereign control. That trust enables us, by faith, to know that our loving Father sees the whole picture and is faithfully working everything for our good and for His glory.
Further, the sovereignty of God impacts our sense of security. When we understand how powerful God is and that nothing can thwart His purposes, we don't need to doubt our salvation, our place in His heart, or our eternal destiny. We need not fear ultimate failure or final destruction (Romans 8:1). We can be confident that God will have His way and that it will be to our benefit.
Finally, the sovereignty of God gives us the confidence that all these things mentioned above are true because all are proclaimed in His Word. God has sovereignly overseen the transmission of the Bible down through the centuries, from handwritten copies of original manuscripts down to the many printed translations we have today. He has kept it free from errors, distortions, and contradictions, making it by far the most accurately reproduced of all ancient documents.
The sovereignty of God impacts our lives today as it frees us from fear and worry, gives us confidence in His Word and in His nature, assures us of His continuing love for us, and allows us to face the future in a dangerous world with joy.
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