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The Mystery Of God's Sovereignty And Our Free Will, Part 1

Fellowship in the Word / Bil Gebhardt
The Truth Network Radio
June 15, 2021 8:00 am

The Mystery Of God's Sovereignty And Our Free Will, Part 1

Fellowship in the Word / Bil Gebhardt

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June 15, 2021 8:00 am

God is beyond our understanding, but what we do know about Him should give us great comfort.

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Today on Fellowship in the Word pastor Bill Gebhardt challenges you to become a fully functioning follower of Jesus Christ. The tendency to limit God, we can have you got is like a super version 1 about like you know I'm kind of smart like he's really smart now as smart as all is all know that's a different thing anyway I can describe that this is to say, God never learned a single thing.

Just think about that is never learned one thing in his he always knew everything going up today on this additional Fellowship in the Word pastor Bill Gebhardt Fellowship in the Words the radio ministry of Fellowship Bible church located in Metairie, Louisiana Pastor Bill Gebhardt. Now once again he shows up how God's word meets our world movie but I don't think you love mysteries when you will is when the mystery is solved at the end of the movie or the book tells you how the mystery is solved, but what you can get any answer all would you love if you can solve mysteries. None of us and even heard of Agatha Christie you never heard of her, but we all did. Because we say I we just love mysteries well. The point is that that we been talking about subjects here that are mysteries out of the word of God. They are as Chuck Swindoll says the subjects of the mysteries in the word of God are inscrutable. We can't possibly get our thoughts around them started a series called put on your thinking cap and I realize for a lot of you. This is kind of a difficult thing to work through, but the first week I talked about the fact that God is unfathomable. As Job said he is unfathomable in a joint tenant were Jews in the Old Testament and its three Hebrew words together literally says God is beyond inscrutable forever. In other words, you can't figure out with guys like memory, said my thoughts are your thoughts, my ways aren't always as high as a heavens are above the earth so microwaves and thoughts and ways and yours in it were always trying to figure out God and work were saying things like why God why did you let that happen. You see, where are you when I really need you. It's interesting that we would question God. From that point of view. Second week we dealt with the will of God. And I said it's not a bull's-eye.

So many Christians waste time. I believe trying to say everything I do.

I got hit the bull's-eye God's will. How I know it's God's what's got to be God's will only look at in the word of God the will of God and in the word of God is almost always relational. It's almost never vocational or locational and answer questions.

I always hear all the time people how I know if God wants me to live in Topeka. I don't know. You see, that's it kind of inscrutable this week.

It's only gonna get worse and this week I want to do with the mystery of God's sovereignty and our free will. God is sovereign and we have free will.

How you deal with this. Have you thought about open your Bibles to Isaiah chapter 46 Isaiah chapter 46 verse eight. Let me help you with the context. The context is that Isaiah is a prophet and is trying to warn the country that if they don't repent God is going to take them into captivity. He's going allow them to be taken in the Babylonian captivity. That's what Isaiah's context is and so God now is speaking through Isaiah, and he says in verse eight, he said, remember this and be assured we call it the mind you transgressors remember the former things long past, for I am God. There is no other. I am God and there's no one like me, declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times, things which have not been done saying my purpose will be established and I will accomplish all my good pleasure. This is God saying you are sovereign, I am you have any idea everything everything in the past that I declared would happen in the future happens in the future.

There's not a detail of life amounts are sovereign over.

Then he says calling a bird of prey from the East.

You wonder what's that have to do with it was a bird of prey of Cyrus. He's going to come and take them. He said, calling a bird of prey from the East. The man of my purpose from a far country, truly outspoken, truly, I will bring it to pass.

I have planted surely I will do it that's got somebody that matter. He said I'm sovereign over everything forever. Now Chuck Swindoll says this, whoever is sovereign must have a total clear perspective, you must see the end from the beginning he must have no match on earth or in heaven, you must entertain no fears no ignorance and have no needs. He must have no limitations in always know what is best. He must never make a mistake you must possess the ability to bring everything to a purposeful conclusion and an ultimate goal, he must be invincible, immutable, infinite, and self-sufficient.

His judgments must be unsearchable in his ways, unfathomable. He must be able to create rather than invent, to direct, rather than to wish to control rather than the hope to guide rather than to guess and to fulfill rather than to dream now who qualifies for this. You guested God does God alone.

God is extraordinarily sovereign. I think we sort of know that but I don't think we do it justice. Turn with me to Daniel chapter 4 Daniel chapter 4 I want to get someone else's assessment of God. One of us, not God's names. Nebuchadnezzar I he's a central figure in the book of Daniel.

He is the greatest king up to his time of all time when the earth he's the first king archaeologist found that calls himself the King of Kings and the Lord of lords. That's Nebuchadnezzar. He built a 90 foot statue of himself and said everyone has to worship me and – you know the story, Shadrach me shack in a Bendigo wouldn't answer each room in the furnace and all that but this is Nebuchadnezzar. While Daniel has to tell Nebuchadnezzar that because of his arrogance in the stands before God. God's connected discipline them and judge them and so he ends up going sort of mad any. He lives as a lesser cow so to speak, grazing in the yard type of thing is the great Nebuchadnezzar. Now it ends and then now Nebuchadnezzar speaks, and so he says in verse 34. At the end of that. I Nebuchadnezzar raised my eyes toward heaven, and my reason returned to me and I blessed the most high, and I praise and honor him who lives forever for his dominion is an everlasting dominion, his kingdom endures from generation to generation.

All the inhabitants of the earth are counted as nothing, but he does according to his will in the host of heaven and among the inhabitants of earth and no one can ward off his hand or say to him what have you done a terrific list. That's a description of sovereignty made by the King of Kings and Lord of wards. Nebuchadnezzar you see this over and over again in second Kings 19 is is certainly you must've heard long ago I worked it out in ancient times, I planted and now I just bring it to pass God's sovereignty, as part of his pre-plan for everything that exist. It's kind of overwhelming memo describe it this way before there was a creation God intimately knew every thought and every action that will be thought or taken for all time before there was a creation take a step further. He only knew that he knew every possible thought every possible action. Now when you start the reason I'm saying that to you is we have a tendency to limit God. We kind of you. God is like a super version.

One of us like you know I'm kind of smart gods like he's really smart.

You know now is not really smart result is all-knowing, she that's a different thing I the only way I can describe God's omniscience. Is this a God never learned a single thing in his existence. Just think about that. He's never learned one thing in his existence. He always knew everything.

This is really a big, big God is way centers me in no other cannonball writes this, God's sovereign purpose extends to all things in his creation and is not limited by space and time.

This plan is so complete that Scripture declares the lot is cast into the lap, but every decision is from the Lord. Proverbs 1633.

Consider the implications of a statement like that ultimately there is no chance in this universe because even the workings of probabilities and statistics are known by God. There are no real accidents and God is never surprised by anything. That's what it means to be sovereign now that part of it should. If you think about it well enough give you comfort and overdoes God's sovereign over Cova 19 the understand that he saw not a shock and a surprise.

Plans already laid out is just rolling along like exactly God wants of the law. He sovereign. He sovereign over the elections in America. He sovereign okay it's always been that way. There never be any other way. He sovereign about all the cultural upheaval in America and what bothers me of so many Christians are. It's such a snit over this really upset and I just can't believe this will God sovereign you see it, then it may take and you as a surprise.

It didn't take him as a surprise. This is the way this is going to be using. We kinda become spoiled because we lived so long in a place that has been such a blessing to the church. It looks like those days are coming to an end. You see, in our upset, but believers all the world gone through this for 2000 years. So why are you so bothered by this disease. The same God is not a surprise to him. I think it a step further. God is sovereign over every diagnosis. He sovereign. It didn't come, I can't believe that's the diagnosis that all I gonna do now God doesn't do that.

He sovereign. He sovereign over every divorce he sovereign over every child abuse case every crime committed. He sovereign over every single thing he sovereign I didn't say he's responsible. She that's a different question entirely see but he is sovereign over everything to the other side of this coin is what is human responsibility. You see what product what price do we pay because we are free will beings and how does that affect your life and mine up turn with me to first Samuel first Samuel chapter 13 first Samuel chapter 13 just an example here in verse 13.

So if you're in the numbers assist 1313 and it is an unlucky number for Saul.

Samuel was talking to Saul when he says the saw in verse 13.

You have acted foolishly. He said you have not kept the commandment of the Lord your God, which he commanded you.

For now the Lord would've established notice.

He said for for now the Lord would've established your kingdom over Israel forever is as I would've given you your kingdom over Israel forever, but he doesn't see what way what's going on here. What happened, he said, but now your kingdom shall not endure the mortise for himself, a man after his own heart. The Lord is appointing him as ruler was people because you have not kept what the Lord commanded you, so God is sovereign over everything. Is he responsible for tapping the Saul no who's responsible for what I saw Saul, he acted on his own free will and he chose not God.

Chapter 15 verse 11. Same book he says is I read God speaking.

I regret that I made Saul king for years turned back from following me and asked not carried out my commandments know what's interesting about that is God's as I regret ever made him king. Now that's an answer more pacifism. That's God taken on a human element of regret.

But the point of it is it's all part of God's plan, but the responsibility for Saul given up his kingdom is anything to do us all. That's our free will and how our free will operates.

It's an interesting thing that God is so sovereign over everything and yet he gives people like you and me a sense of our own free will and we use it.

Remember the Lord's prayer that Jesus is a very simple prayer right but I think sometimes we overlook what he says he said in our father art in heaven, hallowed be your name.

Your kingdom come in minutes. Is this you will be done. What on earth like what I just sent in heaven. Why is Jesus praying for that. Why is he telling you and I do pray for you.

See you lose the balance here. Wait a minute, isn't is God's will in heaven perfectly done. Yes you suggest is a perfectly done on earth. No, because of our will we choose you see Jesus again.

You need to pray about. Pray that your will in heaven. Your will and earth to be just like you will in heaven God sovereign over everything. There's no question about that. That's the way this works but that ends up becoming the substance of how the mystery is now God is sovereign over everything that there is completely and you and I operate under own free will. So how do you handle the mystery and there's three ways you can. The first way you could is to say reject Irving as that is untrue is not really sovereign and then that's all rejected all you can, but you can see your biblical Bible is really clear on this.

In this these are facts from the word of God. I can't reject the second one is, we can rationalize it, then analyze it and then explain it. This one I I was a member of this club for a long time that the idea that we can do this that we can rationalize something and then analyze and then explain that you let me tell you how this really really works. That's not the case at all.

The third one is accept them except the mystery Just except this mystery is true again. Can boa the correct approach is to learn to live with the mystery by accepting both truce involved that are holding them in tension because of the authority of God's word. He said the only problem is that human understanding is sometimes deficient and if we can raise our thoughts. The level God's out there be no mysteries, but we can't just hold the mystery but to me, many people can't do that I have to explain God to you. I know the answer and explain it to you and by the way up said I did it myself, and I'm not proud of it.

But the point of it is there things you can explain the beginning of the church. Heresy broke up and I had to deal with it and heresy was who is Jesus who is Jesus Christ.

You see, and we would say 2000 years later because of so many different creeds and studies that we been through Jesus Christ is truly God and truly man over to say this week Jesus Christ is 100% God and 100% man could you explain it. Could you explain that to someone use use math, you can use calculus. If you he's 100% God is 100% man is unexplainable. You, so here's what they did.

The first group, and said no Jesus look like a man, but it was an illusion. It was like a projection he really was God. Just look like a man in a try to explain that with the Mexico come up with. Someone invented the next Pokémon said this, Jesus was born a man and many lived as a perfect man until he was baptized by John. We got baptized by John. He became God.

He was no longer man now is God and he was gone for three and half years and then they crucified him, and when they crucified him. He was man so we could die.

So he became man and then when he was raised he was God again. Okay, and that caused a lot of creeds to be written and mean you know that's what we get the idea that you can explain this. This is something you can explain. If you ever try to explain the Trinity. Really I'm not. Just explain it with the lamest thing possible water and on as his eyes. The Mrs. water nexus to listen, if you're talking to someone who has a brain and or have Bill kill that there there is no logic and I'm not at all.

But the point is, I can explain it. How do you know that's true because the Bible says the father's God.

The Bible says the sun is God and the Bible says the Holy Spirit is God so and I Bible says is only one God of the Bible says that they're all God there's only one so we use things like the Trinity is three personages.

I don't know what that word means personages in one Godhead, stuff like that. The reason is we can't really explain it, the Colts, for example, who are always going to try to diminish Jesus Christ. They make hail and this they talk to Christians about the Trinity, and Christians have no idea how to handle it.

And so, Jehovah's Witnesses believe Jesus was an angel.

He wasn't a man and he was in God is just an angel.

The Mormons believe that Jesus was an artwork of the physical son of God and Jesus is the brother of Lucifer that we call the devil he and Jesus are two brothers under the father of God and the good people believe it because that makes more sense to me.

Understand what a triune God is see certain things about the essence of God are not something you and I can really explain very easily.

That's the point. It's inscrutable. You see, I can understand it. That's an important factor. So in this subject.

The subject's been debated for at least 16, 1700 years the sovereignty of God in the free will of man, Pelagius, and in St. Augustine, debated and way way back then it was debated through the Reformation by Calvin and Joseph Arminius so you have Calvinism and Arminianism and basically even arguing about it for the last 500 years and that the method in which they go about their arguments are always the same and if you talk to some of his clinics explain it to go. Use these kind of arguments. The first thing is you quote only the verses to support your support. Support your position.

Okay can I find versus the support the sovereignty of God. Yet can I find versus the support of free will and yeah I only quote those then second step they do, they ignore the other side versus and the third one is they distort obvious versus the make their position even weaker. You see, in that we just distort them and you end up with all kinds of things. If you were ultra Calvinist you into believing and limited atonement. Okay so you come to a passage like that means Christ died only for the elect.

He didn't die for everybody only died for them. The elect okay so you see John 316 for God so loved the world, but he sent his son into the world who memorably right so you think that's great.

Know the word world. There doesn't mean world. Now I don't know and what in any language I've ever seen in any great text.

I've never seen John knew the word for elect. He also knew the word for world every time he uses the word for world except in two places.

According to them it's always the same, but they say he know it that that's so God so loved the elect that he sent his son into the elect doesn't make sense: mentors first John chapter 2 when Johnstone is people not to. Cindy said my little children, I'm writing this it you do not sin. But if you do sin, we have an advocate with the father Christ Jesus the Lord, who is a propitiation not just for our sins, but for the sins of the whole world know it did mean that he means just elect to you we can. The other position about Timothy and Peter both say God desires number lost. I doesn't really mean it doesn't really mean what says it not that mean try to change it in order. Support your position. Pastor Bill Gebhardt. If you ever miss one of our broadcast or maybe you dislike the method one more time. Remember the little great website called in one that's one and you can listen the Fellowship in the Word online that website you will find on with today's broadcast so many of our previous audio programs as well have Fellowship in the Word. We are thankful for those who financially support our ministry and make this broadcast possible.

We ask all of our listeners to prayerfully consider how you might help his radio ministry continuous broadcast on this radio station by supporting a monthly fourth is the one time gift support for ministry can be sent to Fellowship in the Word.

4600 Clearview Pkwy., Metairie, LA 7006 if you would be interested in hearing today's message in its original format that is is a sermon that Pastor Bill delivered during a Sunday morning service at Fellowship Bible church visit our website FVC that FVC and LA.O RG at our website you will find hundreds. Pastor Bill sermon.

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