Home > Doctrine, Theology > Providence: God’s Hand in Everyday Life

Providence: God’s Hand in Everyday Life

This is a guest post from David Qaoud former chaplain for the Northwest Missouri State Bearcat football team.  You can read his blog “Gospel Relevance” and follow him on Twitter.  Please note, the doctrine of providence is complex.  This post leaves several of the more difficult questions unanswered because it is intended to be a brief introduction, not a comprehensive examination.  

I once ate at Qdoba with a few friends after church one Sunday afternoon. Upon arriving, the employees kindly informed us that this Sunday was uniquely dedicated to the Cardinals (of St. Louis) and everyone who wore any Cardinal apparel would receive a discount. I had no idea of the rule prior to agreeing to attend the lunch. And I just so happened to be wearing a St. Louis Cardinals t-shirt. Coincidence?

There is a mysterious doctrine that pertains to God called providence. In short, it says that God is specifically and actively related to and involved in every aspect of creation – big and small – at each moment and that he ordains, arranges, and predestines everything that happens according to his will.  More particularly, Wayne Grudem defines providence in his classic work, Systematic Theology, like this:

God is continually involved with all created things in such a way that he (1) keeps them existing and maintaining the properties with which he created them; (2) cooperates with created things in every action, directing their distinctive properties to act as they do; and (3) directs them to fulfill his purposes.

God's Providence

This should give us an immeasurable amount of peace and joy. Why?

Here’s why: God has ordained every single event in our life – from the obviously big, to the seemingly irrelevant – to happen the way he wants them to happen to fulfill his perfect plan, which is for your highest good. Nothing can happen to us outside of his providential care. (Psalm 103:19)

And because we know that God is in control of all things, that all things work together for good, and that nothing can happen to us apart from God’s ordaining, we can rest in God’s sovereignty and goodness. (Romans 8:28-30Genesis 45:5-8)

Likewise, Jesus is our great providential King. He is the lamb of God provided to be slain. He is the good Shepard who provides food for thousands. He is the Great I Am who creates many miracles. He is the Alpha and Omega, who is not only creator of creation, but also the sustainer of it. In living a perfect life, dying for sin and rising from death, Jesus is our Ultimate Sacrifice who provides his very self to bring us back to God. (John 10:11-18; John 8:58; Colossians 1:15-17; 1 Peter 3:18; Revelation 1:8; Revelation 17:14)

Jesus is in control of everything. And everything that happens to us is for our highest joy and his greater glory.

Now tell me what you’re worried about again?

For more resources on the doctrine of providence visit www.monergism.com/topics/providence-god’s-will. 

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