Week1. Thursday: The Purpose of God’s Plan
PRAY: Ask God to speak to you from His Word
READ: Ephesians 1:11-12
11 In him we were also chosen, having been predestined according to the plan of him who works out everything in conformity with the purpose of his will, 12 in order that we, who were the first to put our hope in Christ, might be for the praise of his glory.
UNDERSTAND: get a deeper understanding of the key words
Chosen (Greek: klēroō): to pick out or choose for one’s self
Predestined (Greek: proorizō): to decide beforehand one’s destination
Plan (Greek: prothesis): purpose (2 Timothy 1:9)
Works Out Everything (Greek: energeō pas kata): to work after or out of
Conformity: a better translation is, “according to”
God works all things according to His will (see Romans 8:28-31).
We call this the “Sovereignty of God” meaning He is in complete control.
Whatever happens must come from God or be allowed by God.
Will (Greek: thelēma): God’s determined plan (Acts 22:14)
Hope (Greek: proelpizō): to put trust in, lean into (1 Timothy 4:10; Hebrews 11:1)
Praise of His Glory: all that God does is for His glory
Common Question: If God is in control, why does evil exist? Does God cause evil?
The argument goes like this: If God is good, He would want to do something about evil. If God is in control, He could do something about evil. But evil still exists. Isn’t that proof that either God doesn’t exist? Or at least that He is not in control? Here’s the biblical answer. God allows evil for reasons we cannot possibly understand fully. God does not cause evil, we cause it, but He does obviously allow it. The best answer is that God HAS done something about evil. He provided a way to be forgiven and turn away from evil. He also takes the evil in the world and works it ultimately into something good. And God, in His grace, limits evil so that we are not nearly as evil as we possibly could be.
APPLY: What is this passage calling me to do?
There is a lot of peace in knowing that God is always at work in every situation we face. No matter what is happening in your life, God is not only in control, He is actively involved. He has a purpose and a plan for everything in our lives. Our issue is TRUST. At the core of all our frustrations with God is a lack of faith (trust). Turning away from God, being angry with God, or even believing that maybe He’s just not in control is devastating. If God is not in complete control (sovereign), then we lose all hope and peace in this life.
What circumstances (now or in the past) have caused you to doubt God’s sovereignty?
Are you currently trusting God in every area of your life?
If God is not in complete control, what are the other options?
PRAY: Thank God for being in control and ask Him to help you trust in Him.