Monday, July 11, 2011

Bible Truth #32 - Proverbs 16:9

In his heart a man plans his course, but the LORD determines his steps.

Wow! Can’t you just see the sovereignty of God in this verse? I’ve had a friend of mine (“Larry”) tell me that he believes God is sovereign but then in the next breath say, “I’ll never believe that God chooses some and not others and lets them go to Hell.” HUH???

So I said, “You just proved to me that you don’t believe in a sovereign God. How? You just said you’ll never believe. A sovereign God can do whatever He wants which includes changing your mind about what you believe! If you don't believe God can do that, then you don't believe in a sovereign God and are just giving lip service to sovereignty.”

Think about that - what Larry really said is that God can’t change his mind about what he believes! I’m telling you - a sovereign God CAN (and does) do anything He wants which includes changing OUR minds.

Philippians 2:13 says He is working in you to THINK and to ACT according to His good pleasure. It does NOT say He MIGHT work in you, it does not say He will work in you IF you’re obedient, His Word says He IS working in you - to THINK and ACT according to His good pleasure. HIS good pleasure, not ours. If He wants to change a man’s mind about ANYTHING, He will do it without asking him. He changed my mind on Election without asking me, and He might change yours. Man is NOT autonomous! We ARE slaves - slaves to sin or slaves to righteousness (Romans 6:17-18) - and slaves have no free will.

But now about this verse. A lost man hates God and can’t believe (accept), can’t come into the Light, can’t please God, can’t understand, etc... So the lost man is planning his life - and it doesn’t include God because he hates God. Now if a particular man is one of the Elect and hasn’t yet been saved, since God decided before the foundation of the world to choose him and to put him IN Christ (Ephesians 1:4), at a point in time God WILL quicken his dead spirit (without asking him if it’s OK) through faith, the faith that God gives him (Ephesians 2:8, Romans 12:3) as a gift. God then gives him belief (John 6:29, Philippians 1:29), repentance (2 Timothy 2:25), and understanding (Luke 24:45, 1 Corinthians 2:14, 2 Timothy 2:7). He now WILL come to Christ (John 6:37) because the Father now draws (drags - Strong’s #1670) him. And those the Father draws, Jesus WILL raise up (John 6:44). The man had his life planned but when God saved him, all that changed.

One other thing - I don’t see any qualifier in that verse regarding if a man is one of the Elect or not. In other words, it makes no difference whether a man is saved or lost, one of the Elect or a man headed for an eternity in the Lake of Fire - without asking if it’s OK with him, THE LORD DETERMINES A MAN’S STEPS.

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