I just have to wonder if all the time we spend trying to understand the whys of God,His work in this world, the free will of man, and the “problem” of evil, is much ado about nothing and more akin to us being the philosophizing friends of Job. At the end of the day I think we can – and must – rest in the cross of Christ rather than trying to proclaim to the world that we have a perfect understanding of the work of God.
One man says, “God is sovereign and controls all,” and can find great scriptural support for his claims. Another says, “God is sovereign but in His sovereignty He gives man sovereignty over his own will, having created man in His own image, and allows man to choose his own way.” And, she can find scriptural support for her ideas. Another person says, “God is sovereign but He can only know what is knowable and, as such, God doesn’t know the future or what choices we will make. God dynamically interacts with the choices we make in an infinitely incredible way.” And, we can find scriptural support for such ideas.
At the end of the day, the cross puts all this to rest, does it not? At the cross you have both judgment and mercy, two seemingly irreconcilable attributes, displayed in one act. At the cross you have death and life in one act. At the cross you have a consuming fire and living water in one act. At the cross you have God choosing to lay down His life and raising it again. At the cross one could even say you have the Father’s will, but not Jesus’ will, and yet the cross represents Jesus’ willingness and obedience simultaneously, even though willingness and obedience seem contrary.
Why do we continue to argue and divide over such matters? Don’t we remember how often God tells us that His ways are higher than our own? That His mind is different than our own? That we weren’t there when He created everything? That He made us? That we are the clay and that He is the potter? That He is? That all consists in Him, including us? Isn’t “such knowledge too wonderful for” us?
Since when can we fight and divide self-righteously over something like how God works in this world and interacts with us when He tells us absolutely to unite in the cross of Christ??? Who are we to disobey God because our minds don’t understand something about Him? Why aren’t we laying these things down and saying with Job: ” I know that You can do everything, and that no purpose of Yours can be withheld from You. You asked, ‘Who is this who hides counsel without knowledge?’ Therefore I have uttered what I did not understand, things too wonderful for me, which I did not know.” Job 42:2-3. I pray that we don’t need Job’s circumstances to come to this conclusion.