God’s Sure Purpose

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It is God’s will, and I delight in it even when it disappoints my hopes. As for God, His way is perfect; He has a purpose which He is steadily carrying out, and He is making all things work together to accomplish it. That purpose is that we may be conformed to the image of His Son, and – with all our perverseness and unbelief, and the thousand other things that we are ashamed of as we look back on our past lives – that purpose will one day be completely accomplished. How fine we shall be then!

J.G. M’Vicker (1826-1900)
Selected Letters with Brief Memoir of J.G. M’Vicker
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No Creature Can Hinder God’s Plans

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I no longer believe that God ever did create a being that was capable of hindering or frustrating any of His loving plans or purposes, and they that believe Satan ever accomplished anything along that line know not God, and many, very many, who profess to love and serve Him are actually ignorant of His wisdom, power, and love.

Thomas E. McDaniel
Unsearchable Riches, Volume 22, 1931
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Vengeance

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Recompense to no man evil for evil… Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, “Vengeance is mine; I will repay,” saith the Lord … Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good (Romans 12:17-21).

God reserves all “vengeance” to Himself, not because wrathful revenge is a temper or quality that can have any place in the holy Deity, but because the holy supernatural Deity, being free from all of the properties of nature, whence partial love and hatred spring, and being in Himself nothing but an infinity of love, wisdom and goodness, He alone knows how to overrule the disorders of nature, that the highest good may be promoted by it.

William LawWilliam Law (1686-1761)
The Spirit of Love (1752)
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Our Disappointments Are His Appointments

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He delights to show His mercy (Micah 7:18).

Seeing God’s sovereign hand in all things turns our regrets into an amazing appreciation!

Our remorse will esteem His almighty plan. Every heartache will be seen as a part of the divine tapestry, meticulously embroidered for the purpose of making known – to every single individual – His unconditional love and mercy.

Disappointments this side of resurrection create the backdrop that is critically important. Otherwise, we would never be able to see clearly the benevolent and generous intent for all of His creation.

Mike Owens
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Free Will?

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Baby Moses, tucked away in his cradle, floating on the water, cried. Was it God’s will, or the baby’s will?

It was a cry that originated in heaven. The king’s daughter was attracted. The child’s life was spared. He entered a palace and eventually became the greatest leader of men this world has ever known. He was entrusted with the commandments; he talked with God on the mountain top.

Is any son of God restless or over-anxious? Then let him think of this minute event and its consequences, and let him watch for the Divine Hand in even life’s smallest events.

Here lies peace. John the Baptist arrived exactly on time to behold the Lamb of God, and be labeled the greatest of all men born among women. Saul was at the right spot when our Lord Jesus visited him.

All is of God. Life’s minutest circumstances are under His control. Therefore, be anxious for nothing. He knows. He loves. He cares. One Captain is competent enough for any ship. We are all only passengers.

Joseph A. Freeman
Unsearchable Riches, Volume 26 (1935)
(abridged & edited)
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God’s Free Will and Man’s Limited Will

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When we speak negatively of humanity’s free will we don’t suggest that we don’t have a will at all. We have a will, it is just not free;[1] neither do we have the unrestricted ability to carry out our will.

God, on the other hand has a will that is absolutely free,[2] and without any restriction in executing it whatsoever. In other words, His will is absolutely sovereign[3] without restraint from any outside source.

God is the Father and we are His children. Relatively speaking, when my children were young they had a will, but it was not free. I caused the exercise of their will to be limited, while mine in relationship to theirs, was sovereign. I did so for their maturity and growth; for their welfare and safety. I had their best interest at heart. So it is with God.

To advocate human free will is to deny God’s Godhood. For there to be a God, there can’t be two conflicting wills. There is room in His universe for only one with free will. It’s impossible for a finite being to have an absolutely free will. If creatures had absolute free will, then the creation would be greater than the Creator. God’s will is FREE; man’s will is NOT.

Based on fancied “free will,” Christianity essentially has God gambling on an experiment. We, however, are not the masters of our own fate. We are not the lords of our own lives. We are the creatures, not the Creator. We’re like a leaf on a stream, unaware of the current beneath carrying it along, or of its destination.

We can relax in our constrained wills as creatures, and rest in Father’s free will as Creator. He is our benevolent Dad; He always knows exactly what He is doing, and those of us granted faith have the eyes to see that it all works for eventual good (Romans 8:28).

C2Pilkington-4Clyde L. Pilkington, Jr.
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[1]“Not limited” – Cambridge Dictionary; “unconstrained; unrestrained; not under compulsion or control … not obstructed” – Webster’s Dictionary (1828).
[2]Interestingly, “free” is a synonym of “sovereign.”
[3]“Self-governing; independent … having supreme rank or power …” – American Heritage Dictionary.

A God Worthy of the Name

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What a relief to point to a God worthy of the name! A God Who has a purpose in pain and a design in death. A God Who will use every groan for His glory and His creature’s gain, and will turn every torment into ecstasy and the exaltation of His great name.

God’s glad message does not consist in heralding a horrid hell. It concerns His Son, and the universal reconciliation is but the gospel ultimate, for it, too, concerns His Son and His eventual triumph. It is the popular orthodox “gospel” which is driving men into various by-paths.

KnochA.E. Knoch (1874-1965)
Unsearchable Riches, Vol. 9, page 98
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The Example of Babel

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God caused the confusion at the Tower of Babel for His purposes. We can look to this historical event and somewhat get a grasp of the grand plan and know that it fits perfectly into what God has been doing in world affairs ever since.

In light of this, maybe we can begin to understand God’s sovereign plan to hide Paul’s message of grace as the church entered the 3rd and 4th centuries. Not only was God in control of those in charge of the distortion of this message, but His plan was not thwarted by the nefarious church that eventually introduced mankind into the dark ages, the gruesome crusades, the reformation, and now the 30,000 denominations we see all around the world.

This has been no less a part of God’s plan than the Tower of Babel. To this, we should include the many false religions. Even though they miss the mark, God uses them all for His grand purpose, which is to eventually display His love and mercy to all.

Keep in mind, this life is not about each of us “getting it right.” It’s God’s way of creating a unique story each one of us will take with us to the day of resurrection. Our pain, frustrations, sin, heartaches, sickness, grief, etc. – these dark things in our lives are the necessary back drop that will forever help us see and experience His love. They’re all a necessary contrast!

We can easily get frustrated with the rejection we experience and also wonder, “Why has God kept this message of the forgotten gospel visible only to a minuscule few?”

Fortunately, we can relax in His sovereign Hand while simultaneously stepping forward with an excitement that He is beginning to reveal this beautiful declaration of relentless love to more and more people around the world – and He’s using us to do it. What a humble privilege we have.

mike-owensMike Owens
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Infinite Love, Wisdom, Power and Justice

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The fact that man was created by a God of infinite love, wisdom, power and justice, is a guarantee that such existence will not in any case prove an endless curse.

Infinite love would desire the final happiness of all.

Infinite wisdom would arrange a perfect plan which, when carried through, would secure the end desired.

Infinite power would secure all that infinite love desired, or infinite wisdom devised.

Infinite justice could be satisfied with nothing less than what the other attributes of God claimed – the triumph of good.

John Crenshaw Burruss (1821-1912)
Voices of the Faith (1887), page 156
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Peace – Be Still!

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Another year has gone. Our eyes are still fixed on that portion of the Divine Calendar so clearly marked as the era of Grace. God’s clock moves steadily on. The saints alone enjoy peace.

Our Lord Jesus is in the boat and all is well. So long as Paul was in the ship all was well with the mixed crew. So it is today amidst all the terrible happenings; let us take courage. Nothing can possibly happen until the era of Grace has run its course. We need not be distressed even for the poor old world, for all will arrive safely on land, even though on perhaps just broken pieces of ship. He must eventually be All in all.

So, as we travel along the highway of another year of Grace, may we keep our minds stayed upon Him, and may we keep our eyes fixed upon that portion of the Divine Calendar which is so especially ours, the era of Grace. Let us talk of peace, and may His peace preside in our hearts. Peace – be still!

Joseph A. Freeman
Unsearchable Riches, Volume 30 (1939)
(edited & abridged)
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