God Working In History

W. Terry Varner
May 28, 2017

It goes without saying that many people feel a sense of uncertainty in our country and culture. Our country reflects its uncertainty by the seeming deep despair especially toward religion. Our culture shows little, if not, greater despair. This is seen in the lack of absolutes and disrespect for both God and the Bible. As Christians and from the Lord’s perspective, let us examine both history' and culture from the pages of the Bible.

God Working in History. We being with the Patriarchal dispensation when God intervened in history to save and develop His teaching among His faithful servants. In the Mosaic dispensation, we begin with the nation of Israel in Egyptian slavery and continue until their defeat by the Babylonians. To do so, God worked various sovereign acts to discipline and teach His people. When Persia defeated Babylon, God acted powerfully by having King Cyrus release Israel from seventy years of captivity allowing Israel to return to the Promised Land. Following Israel’s return, God acted through the Greek Empire by disseminating the Greek language and translating the Hebrew Bible into Greek. With the fall of Greece to the Roman Empire, Israel was oppressed and dominated by the Romans well into New Testament times. God acted in human history by revealing to Nebuchadnezzar, king of the Babylonians by the prophet Daniel, that it is He who pulls down and raises up kingdoms. In Daniel m2, God reminds us that He is in charge of the times and seasons of men (cf. Acts 17:26). The prophet Isaiah reminds us that God’s ways and thoughts are not like those of man (cf. Isa. 55:8-9).

God Worked His Beat in the Worst of Times. The great pivotal moment in human history was during the worst of times. The worst evil occurred in the cross when the sinless Christ died for the sins of man (cf. Rom. 5:8; 1 or. 15:1-4; 2 Cor. 5:21; Eph. 1:7). Does not God acting by His sovereign power in the cross and the resurrection, teach us He offered His grace and forgiveness to all men (cf. Titus 2:11)? Does this not teach us the important fact that God is in charge or sovereign?

In our country and culture’s deep despair, God’s work has not changed. He still uses the cross and the resurrection in answer to man s despair and life. While corruption and evil continues and seems more successful than does good and righteousness, God’s powerful acts of the cross and resurrection is the divine answer. Sin’s power was defeated at the cross (cf. Heb. 2:14). The sting of death and the holding of man in the grave were conquered through Jesus’ death and resurrection. There are two major questions: (1) How do we get sinners to listen and obey the message of the gospel before the judgment? (2) How do we motivate Christians, cleansed by the blood of Jesus, to take seriously the power of the cross and the resurrection?

We must never forget that then gospel remains God’s power to salvation (cf. Rom. 1:16) and the power to keep the saved saved (cf. Rom. 1:17) so that eternity may be enjoyed. Jesus promised that He would allow nothing, absolutely nothing, to prevail upon His work and His church. Jesus makes all the difference and His word teaches and guides man how to live for Him. Consider: Outside of the cross of Jesus and His resurrection, there is no hope in this world.

Our world’s culture is a culture of despair. If Christianity could flourish in the first century during one of the worst of pivotal times in human history, then we can trust God will continue through His powerful message to change lives and hearts of those who obey Him. Jesus is alive and must be worshipped, praised, adored, and trusted by men if they enjoy Heaven.