Monday, October 09, 2006

The God of Providence

"The history of Providence, as it is unfolded in the Book of Esther, is a key to the history of the world. It enables us to unlock the mysterious counsels of the Ruler of the universe in the events of former times, and teaches us to refer to his Sovereign will, for the manifestation of his own glory, the most dark and frowning occurrences of the times in which we live. History that is not written on this principle, is only a book of atheism; and the Christian in reading it ought always to supply the defect...The Christian is warranted to refer to his God the most trifling as well as the most momentous occurrences of every day. Nothing in God’s world can be so mean as to be below his notice; nothing can be so untoward as to thwart his purpose. This is not only a truth, by the firm, open, and constant belief of which God is to be honored; it is likewise the source of never-failing consolation. We walk by faith, and not by sight. Everything about us seems to counteract God’s word; and if we do not believe that God can bring good out of evil, and turn the most adverse events to the fulfillment of his own glorious purposes, our hearts will fail us every moment. But when we reflect that God reigns on earth as well as in heaven, and that every occurrence is directed by him, we have hope even in affliction, and confidence against the most vigorous opposition to the truth. What a comfort to reflect that nothing has ever taken place but what is according to the counsel of our heavenly Father! A deep and abiding impression of this consoling truth also directs and encourages our prayers. It sends us to the throne of grace, not only when we need deliverance from great dangers, or when we seek the most distinguished blessings, but when there is the most trifling annoyance to be removed, or the smallest comfort or convenience to be wished."
-- By Alexander Carson, in The God of Providence, The God of the Bible, 1853

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