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Sunday, 6 November 2016

In control!

I suspect that most of us have done it - intended to click on one link on the computer screen, and accidentally clicked on the one above/below it!  It happened to me earlier today, and I ended up with a message about conspiracy!  However, I noted down the three questions that were asked on the sound-clip, as I have different answers to them!  Here they are:

1. Who really controls the world?

According to the theory - and, in human terms, it may well be true - it is a group of "Big Banks" and transnational companies.  However, when I open the pages of my Bible, I discover that this is not actually the case!  I read, for example, that "... The kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers take counsel together, against YHWH and His anointed, saying, 'Let us burst their bonds asunder, and cast their cords from us.' He Who sits in the heavens laughs; YHWH has them in derision. Then He will speak to them in His wrath, and terrify them in His fury, ..." (Ps 2:2-5).  Later on, in the same Book of Psalms, we read: "For dominion belongs to YHWH, and He rules over the nations." (Ps 22:28).  Just one further quotation from the Psalms: "The Lord reigns; let the peoples tremble! He sits enthroned upon the cherubim; let the earth quake! The Lord is great in Zion; He is exalted over all the peoples. Let them praise Thy great and terrible name! Holy is He!   Mighty King, lover of justice, Thou hast established equity; Thou hast executed justice and righteousness in Jacob. Extol YHWH our God; worship at His footstool! Holy is He!" (Ps 99:1-5; emphasis added). 

Yes, make no mistake about it.  The One Who really controls the world is the One Who created it!

2. Who is pulling the strings?

Well, that question is actually answered in the response to the first one!  However, "pulling strings" suggests a more personal aspect.  The old Book of Proverbs has this to say: "Many are the plans in the mind of a man, but it is the purpose of YHWH that will be established." (Prov 19:21).  Writing to the Ephesian disciples of Jesus, almost 2,000 years ago, Paul could say: "In Him, according to the purpose of Him Who accomplishes all things according to the counsel of His will, we who first hoped in Christ have been destined and appointed to live for the praise of His glory." (Eph 1:11-12; emphasis added).  Again, writing to his fellow-believers in Rome, he could give the wonderful assurance that: "We know that in everything God works for good with those who love Him, who are called according to His purpose." (Rom 8:28; emphasis added).

Now, let me make clear that I am not suggesting that we are all like puppets, with Almighty God as the puppet-master!  We have been given the wonderful privilege - and awesome responsibility - of free-will.  I make decisions, on a daily basis. Sadly, it is often the case when time shows that IO made a wrong decision!  But this does not affect the overall plan and purpose of God. He, from His vantage point of eternity, sees every decision I make before I have made it and, in ways that are totally beyond my puny understanding, works them into His ultimate plan for me, and for the whole of creation!  By the way, there is much more on that topic in the chapter on "Predestination" in my book "Great Words of the Faith". (see above).

3. Who is hiding behind the curtain?

That has to be my favourite question of the three!  The Biblical "curtain" was the one in the Tabernacle and, later, the Temple, that separated the Holy Place from the Holy of Holies.  It was through this curtain, or "veil" that the High Priest alone was permitted to go - and only on one occasion each year (the day of Atonement; Yom Kippur) after special sacrifices and other rituals.  Iyt was "behind the veil" that the Shekinah (the visible manifestation of the glory of God) was seen.  It was the veil that kept that awesome sight from mortal men.

When Jesus of Nazareth breathed His last as He hung on a cross at Calvary, we read "And behold, the curtain of the temple was torn in two, from top to bottom;" (Matt 27:51).  In other words, the barrier that symbolised the separation between God and mankind was removed - and removed from above! The way was now open for us to enjoy direct access to the Father - without priest, or sacrifice, or a keeping of the Law.  So, the anonymous writer of the Letter to Hebrew disciples of Jesus could write: "Therefore, brethren, ... we have confidence to enter the sanctuary by the blood of Jesus, by the new and living way which He opened for us through the curtain, that is, through His flesh, ..." (Heb 10:19-20).

Who is hiding behind the curtain?  No-one!  The way is open; the veil has been torn; through the shed blood of Jesus, I can enter the presence of the Creator of all that is.

I confess to actually enjoying reading some of the conspiracy theories that abound, today. One or two of them even have that "ring of truth" about them.  But when it comes to the sovereign power of God, and my access to Him through the sacrificial death of the Lord Jesus - and, of course, His glorious resurrection! - then it is no theory. All of that, and more, has been confirmed by billions down through the centuries, and even millennia.

Of course, the real question is: "What have you done about it?!  Have you come, in repentance and faith, to this same Jesus; seeking forgiveness for your sins, and entering into a new life through, and with, Him?  If not, why not?  I commend Him to you - and will happily provide any help that I can. There are also a couple of useful links further down the page.  Do use them!

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