The Attributes of God as Aspects of His Providence
People do not know where they came from. They also do not know where they are going. There is nothing in the natural man that seeks after God, who created him and who sustains man’s very existence. Even the affairs of humanity are under the sovereign control of Almighty God. In other words, God is holding it — that is everything — together by His will and for His purposes.
It behooves humanity to acknowledge God because He is the Lord of every man and each person’s days are in His hand. Despite the proverbial signature of God being written on all creation, man is oblivious to the miracles of nature each day. People give no heed to God who made them just as they are, body and soul.
God has revealed Himself and His workings to the people of the earth. The all-wise God has given us His Word of truth that we might know Him and believe in Him. God has spoken and He has moved men to write the Holy Bible that we may worship our Maker, who is worthy. In fact, God’s sovereign working of all things should cause us to marvel.
Humanity, mired in sin, is less than impressed. The devil, our adversary, blinds people from seeing the Gospel. When one who sees warns one who does not see, the blind pays no attention. In pride and ignorance, they stumble into the pit of fiery hell. Boasting of their autonomy, their independence from God, people claim the sovereignty of their own free will.
Sin easily encompasses man. It crouches at the door of his soul and destroys him. Man is devoid of the knowledge of the Holy One. To be holy means that God is pure, undefiled, and set apart from that which is unholy. God hates sin (Jer 5:30) and sinners (Ps 5:5; 7:11; 11:5).
In addition, God is righteous. He always does right because all His ways are true (Rev 15:3). He must judge and when He does, it is a just judgment. Justice is required because of righteousness. God is right. Man is wrong. Man must be judged by the righteous judge of all the earth (Gen 18:25), who is coming to judge the living and the dead (Acts 17:31; 2 Tim 4:1; 1 Pet 4:5)
Man is embittered against God for the attributes of His providential working of all things. The world hates God and it hates Jesus, hence, His followers (Jn 7:7; 15:18–19, 24–25; Rom 1:30). This anger is unwarranted because God is benevolent (Ps 145:9), in the providential care of both the righteous and the wicked. God gives good things but because of sin, there is an appendage of hurt attached for the unrighteous.
Man would be wise to befriend the God who has made Himself known, but only God is wise and unless He initiates the friendship, there is only enmity. The fool imagines himself to be clever. He actually believes that he lives and moves and has his being without God.
Nature proves to be more wise than sinful humanity. The tree raises its branches to heaven. The earth trembles and quakes at the prospect of its Maker. The birds sing. The lions roar. They know.
There is no one beside God. He alone determines the course and the end of all things. He is the Lord of all. Creatures and creation do His bidding. The angels and the rivers are His servants. It is God’s will and good pleasure that must be done. In all of this, God is glorified.
In His governance of all that exists, He has established laws to settle the chaos. He has determined it. He sustains it. His Word explains it. What God does is irresistible. There is no one who can thwart His working of all things. Though people appear in rebellion against Him. He sits in the heavens and laughs at the arrogant boasts of the proud.
Why do men think more highly of themselves than they ought? They have no fear of God. They have no fear of God because God has not made them to reverence Him. Otherwise, they would join the ranks of those who do call upon His praiseworthy name.
A person calls upon the Lord because he or she believes in Him who is exalted above all. The believer believes because of the Spirit of God who grants faith. What does the Spirit-filled believer actually believe?
The believer in Jesus Christ believes in the attributes of God, as the very aspects of His providence. To deny what is revealed about God, by God, in His Holy Word, is to deny the faith handed down to all the saints. This is why doctrine and theology are utmost for the church to teach and preach.
Knowing Christ means we know God as He really is in truth. Each aspect of providence is seen in the life of Jesus Christ, who reveals God to us. We have heard, learned, and believe in the holiness of God, His righteousness and just judgment. We trust in His sovereign wisdom and power, which assures us that God is sure and stable. He is good, kind, and benevolent. No one and nothing can resist Him. He reigns supreme.
These glorious attributes, observed in action by His providence — reported in Scripture and experienced in our own lives — compels us to worship Him who is God. For if any of these things were not true, then He would not be God.
Spokane Valley, Washington
July 21, 2021