Tag Archives: God’s sovereignty

“Now there arose up a new king over Egypt, which knew not Joseph.”  (Exodus 1:8, KJV)

These 13 words describe how easily life can be transformed from mountaintop to valley; from “can do no wrong” to “can do nothing right”; from the big house to the dog house.

We do well to remain mindful of how quickly the externals of our life can change; and to grasp lightly our health, wealth, and personal relationships.  Egypt — although gracious and hospitable for a time — was not God’s destination for the Children of Israel; a much better land awaited them.  The “new king over Egypt, which knew not Joseph” was the catalyst for the beginning of the next phase of God’s plan for the Israelites.

Changes await all of us, and some changes may not be welcome changes.  Fear not.  A change in circumstance provides the “elbow room” in our lives for the growth that is to come.

God did not desert the Children of Israel, even in their distress; and God will not desert the disciples of Jesus.  As we are reminded in Romans 8: Nothing shall separate us from the love of God!  – Luther

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“I know the greatness of the LORD — that our Lord is greater than any other god.  The LORD does whatever pleases him throughout all heaven and earth, and on the seas and in their depths.  He causes the clouds to rise over the whole earth.  He sends the lightning with the rain and releases the wind from his storehouses.”  (Psalm 135:5-7, NLT)

More than forty years ago, J. B. Phillips wrote a book (which is still in print, by the way) titled, “Your God is Too Small.”  The title alone provokes the question: How big is your God?

The psalmist, as we see in today’s selection, had a big God.  There is a direct relationship between the size of our problems and the size of our God.  As I heard related several years ago in a sermon by Austin, Texas pastor Gerald Mann: “Big God, small problems.  Small God, big problems.”

Having a God that cannot be bossed, because He is all-powerful; that cannot be bought, because he has infinite resources; is a comfort, a joy, and an arsenal for whatever problems life presents!  – Luther

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“The Lord does whatever pleases him, in the heavens and on the earth, in the seas and all their depths.”  (Psalm 135:6, NIV)

“Unbossed and unbought” was the slogan of the late Shirley Chisholm (1924-2005).

Chisholm was the first black woman elected to the U. S. Congress (New York – 1968); the first black candidate from a major political party (Democratic) for the U. S. Presidency (1972); and the Democratic party’s first female nominee for President.

Although I was too young to vote in 1972, I remember well the appeal of Congresswoman Chisholm: Direct, truthful, principled, and — of course — “unbossed and unbought.”  Many in the electorate who were on the margins of political influence and financial power were energized by Chisholm’s history and her message.

The psalmist’s description of God is of One who is truly sovereign.  Sovereignty is defined as “the quality of having supreme, independent authority” in a particular realm; or, as the psalmist says: Doing “whatever pleases him in the heavens and on the earth, in the seas and all their depths.”

It should cheer us to worship a God who is sovereign over (and in) everything because He can never be “bossed,” and He can never — ever — be “bought.”  – Luther

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