I believe that God is absolutely sovereign. That means that he is in control of all things, and that nothing is outside of his authority. He is the one and only God. He knows all things. He is all-powerful.
At the same time, I believe in the freedom of men and women to choose. I believe that God has given us free will, and because of this we now are responsible for the choices that we make.
I have to make this admission: I am not sure how all of this works out. I cannot fully explain it in a way that is satisfactory to everyone. I have friends who are more confident in their ability to explain God than I am. Some are Calvinist. Others are Arminian. And if you are uncertain as to the meaning of either of those terms, it’s OK. This column is not an attempt to explain or argue about those terms.
Because I am neither Calvinist nor Arminian, I have a couple of friends who tell me that I am confused. But I think there are things in the Bible that are not fully explainable.
Now, I do not mean that we should throw our arms in the air and give up thinking. I believe we need to do all we can to have a better understanding of who God is. But we also must admit that we cannot know everything there is to know about him.
In Revelation 19, John sees a vision of heaven opened up and the Lord Jesus Christ riding on a horse. In verse 12, John says that Jesus “has a name written that no one knows but himself.” In that same paragraph, John referred to Jesus by a number of names: “Faithful and True,” “The Word of God” and “King of Kings and Lord of Lords.” But he also says that Jesus has a name that only Jesus knows.
Here’s what I think John is saying. We cannot know everything there is to know about the Lord. He remains mysterious to us in some ways — and that is simply because he is God. If I could know everything there is to know about God, he really would not be God. But he is greater and more powerful than we are. After all, he is God.
I want to do all I can do to more about this God. I want to know him better. I want to serve him. But I acknowledge that I can never understand him fully. As we read in Psalm 118:23, “This is the Lord’s doing; it is marvelous in our eyes.” God is indeed marvelous and wonderful and mysterious. He is powerful and knowledgeable and loving. He is God, and I am not. And that is good news.
This marvelous God invites you to come to him and trust in him. I pray that you will do just that.