Tuesday, October 2, 2018

The Providence of God

Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from the will of your Father” (Matthew 10:29).

Yesterday we saw that the answer to worry is to trust in God’s care for us. This leads us to consider the doctrine of God’s providential care over all things. The doctrine of God’s providence is the biblical teaching that God superintends all things that come to pass in His world.

The word providence is a little bit of a misnomer. It comes from two Latin words: pro, meaning “before,” and video, meaning “to see.” Thus, in a sense, providence refers to both God’s seeing something before it happens, and before His face, in the sense that He oversees it. Thus, providence includes more than just foreknowledge. It includes His government over all things.

God sees all things. He sees every sparrow that lands on the ground. There is not the slightest detail that is overlooked by the gaze of God. He governs this world and manages it in total awareness of what is going on. The hairs of our heads are all numbered (Matthew 10:30), and every idle word we speak is heard by God.

On the one hand, this is very frightening, but at the same time, it should be comforting. The God who sees and hears is a God who cares. “So don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows” (v. 31). God knows fully what we need, and is willing and able to help us. Because of this, we don’t need to be afraid to be in His presence. As the old spiritual says, “His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me.”

There is nothing more comforting than the doctrine of divine providence. We can be assured that God is aware, not only of every one of our transgressions but also of every one of our tears, aches, and fears. The modern world would have us believe there is no heavenly Father, no kindly providence overseeing the lives of believers and that the universe is ruled solely by natural laws and chance. There is surely no comfort in such a belief, and there is not a shred of evidence for it either.

God sits on His throne, leaning forward lovingly to watch the lives of His children. Meditate on God’s providence over all you think and do. Take another minute to thank God for the fact He sees every hurt and need you have.