Proverbs 20:24

Man’s goings are of the LORD; how can a man then understand his own way?

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What are your plans for today? The LORD will alter them if He chooses, and He will use them for Himself, if He chooses not to alter them. Either way, He is the Potter, and you are the clay. It does not matter if you believe God is sovereign or not, because God is sovereign over your life, whether you believe it or not. But wise men will submit to Him, knowing they can neither forecast the future, determine the future, or change the future.

The LORD Jehovah rules over all! He created for His own pleasure (Pr 16:4; Rev 4:11), and He governs it all for His own pleasure (Is 46:10; Eph 1:11). His rule includes chance events and movements of sparrows (Pr 16:33; I Kgs 22:34; Matt 10:29). He knows the end from the beginning, and you do not even know tomorrow (Pr 27:1; Is 44:7; 45:21).

Pharaoh, his parents, and Egypt thought he was a great success. His whole life had been constant progress to the throne. He was rich, strong, and victorious. He ruled the greatest nation on earth. But his existence and position were simply for the LORD to show His power and to honor Himself by crushing him (Ex 9:16; Rom 9:17). Hallelujah! Amen!

The King of Assyria thought he was the greatest king alive, and his great and many military conquests seemed to confirm his confidence (Is 10:8-11,13-14). But God had simply used him like a rod to chasten Israel (Is 10:5-15). And when the LORD was through using him, He destroyed him miserably for his arrogant attitude (Is 10:16-19).

King Ahasuerus of Persia could not sleep, and chose reading the history of the Empire rather than other available sleep helps, bringing the incredible promotion of Mordecai and horrific demotion of Haman (Esth 6:1-14). Ruth chose gleaning to provide for Naomi and herself, but she happed on the field of rich Boaz, who soon married her (Ruth 2:1-3).

Wicked Jews and Romans killed Jesus of Nazareth, but they did no more than His eternal counsel had determined would be done (Acts 2:22-24; 4:27-28). They fulfilled every prophecy He had given hundreds of years earlier (John 19:31-37). Yet He held them accountable and obliterated their nation for the crime (Matt 23:34-36; I Thess 2:14-16).

Timing and chance, governed by God, are far more important factors in human successes than a man’s own swiftness, strength, wisdom, understanding, or skill (Eccl 9:11). Men do not know what or when anything is going to happen (Eccl 9:12). God has so ordained events that men cannot find anything outside His government of the universe (Eccl 7:14).

Therefore, godly wisdom submits all to God’s will (Jas 4:13-15). Since believers do not know His secret things, they beg in prayer until they are revealed (Deut 29:29; II Sam 12:22-23). They tremble before their great God in humility and obedience (Ecc 12:13-14; Is 66:1-2). They make preparations, but they beg Him for success (Pr 21:31; Ps 127:1).

They devise plans, but they know God rules the details (Pr 16:9). They do not glory in anything they have, knowing that all things are His sovereign gifts (I Cor 4:7; 15:10). They are not in despair, because they know He rules the future (II Cor 4:8-18). They fear no man, for they know the will of God will surely be done (Dan 3:16-18; Acts 21:14).

Here is the faith of God’s elect. They glorify their Creator, rather than make Him angry, as did Belshazzar (Dan 5:21-24). They know the course of their life is beyond their knowledge and ability, for it is in God’s hands (Jer 10:23; Acts 17:28). They seek Him diligently, knowing He can favorably arrange circumstances for them (Ps 37:23; Heb 11:6). They reject chance, Fate, and coincidences, knowing all events are under His rule.

Since God’s secret will for their lives is unknown, the elect dedicate themselves to the revealed things that are known – the commandments they are to keep (Deut 29:29). Rather than despair with His secret and sovereign providence, they seek Him with the whole heart, in cheerful submission and thanksgiving, regardless of their portion in life.

The elect, who have fled for refuge to Jesus Christ by His sovereign gift of faith, always know that the hairs of their head are numbered and they are of more value than many sparrows (Matt 10:30-31). The great Potter has prepared them from before the foundation of the world as vessels of mercy unto eternal life (Rom 9:21-24; Eph 1:3-12). He predestinated them unto salvation, and He will certainly bring it to pass (Rom 8:28-39).