Monday, January 26, 2004

The Lord Told Me (last part)...

God has two wills. God's Sovereign Will (what He decrees) and God's Moral Will (what He desires). In this last post reviewing Greg Koukl's Decision Making and the Will of God I'll summarize what Greg says regarding God's Will and quickly roll-up the Biblical view on decision making. I highly recommend that you pick up the CD / Outline packet (through Stand to Reason). It'll only set you back about $20 or so. The Sovereign Will of God is what God decrees. It is His total control over the Universe. He created the natural realm and is Sovereign over it. It is His plan. Scriptural references for it are: Ephesians 1:11; Romans 9:19; Daniel 4:35; Acts 2:23; Acts 4:27-28; Job 12:9. One note regarding this aspect of God's Will is that we usually know about it only in hindsight. Unless God reveals it, through His Word or through supernatural means, it remains a mystery to us. A conclusion here would be that we, then, do not have access to it for decision making purposes. The Moral Will of God is what He desires for mankind in how we ought to live. Scriptural references are: 2 Peter 3:9; 1 Thessalonians 4:3; Ephesians 5:16-18; 1 Peter 2:13-15; 1 Thessalonians 5:15-18. God's Moral Will is completely revealed. It is not revealed as an individual plan but is applicable to all Christians. Rather than give us specific instructions on who to marry, for example, it tells us how to be a good spouse. As Greg Koukl states, "It’s not about what I do, but about who I am." So taking these concepts as outlined in the Bible we have an area of our life that is guided by God's Moral Will. It is what we find written in Scripture regarding God's commands and prohibitions. We are tasked with diligently studying and learning His Word in which we will find how He desires we should live. Intersecting with God's Moral Will is the aspect of Wisdom. The Bible states we should seek Wisdom by either searching God's Word, praying for it, or seeking guidance from wise counsel. Personal factors are then applied as well. In 1 Corinthians 7:40 we read, “In my opinion she is happier if she remains as she is.” Or in 2 Corinthians 9:7, “Let each one do just as he has purposed in his heart; not grudgingly or under compulsion; for God loves a cheerful giver.” Note that we are working this pattern in sequence: 1) Moral Will, 2) Wisdom then, 3) Personal Desires. Too often we work it the other way around. Therefore we have been given the resources with which we can make decisions, our decisions, in this life. Finally we must be cognizant of the fact that God's Sovereign Will encompasses the factors I've just described. This is certainly a great mystery, namely, how can God use our Free Will within His Sovereign Plan. Yet God can, and will, intervene in our lives to work out the purposes of His Plan.

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