So then it depends not on human will or exertion, but on God, who has mercy. Romans 9:16
Sovereign. Possessing supreme or ultimate power. Absolute in authority and unrestricted in supremacy. Omniscient (knows all), omnipotent (can do all; all-powerful), and omnipresent (everywhere at all times).
In God’s sovereignty, we see His goodness, mercy, grace, pursuit, and patience. God raised up a people – the Israelites – to unveil His plan. Piece by piece. Story by story. Hint by hint. Their adoption, their history, the covenants, the Law, the sacrifices, the worship, the promises, the patriarchs, the lineage of Jesus – the Christ; the Messiah.
In God’s sovereignty, He chooses the line from which the Messiah would come. But in His love and grace, it isn’t lineage of the flesh that saves us; it is a lineage of the promise available to all who believe.
In God’s sovereignty, He shows mercy, compassion, and even allows hardening. Paul references Moses and Pharaoh. And while the end result was the destruction of so much of Egypt, God was patient and pursuing. Ten times Pharaoh and the Egyptians saw God’s power and authority on display with an opportunity to submit to Him. And ten times Pharaoh rebelled, choosing to cling to his personal power and position while watching those under his control suffer horrifically. We have a choice to say no to God, and God has a choice to say, “okay…have it your way…if this is what you want, let’s see how it works out for you.”
The prophets consistently preached both invitation to choose God, and consequences for saying, “not now” one too many times.
God chose the exact perfect time the Messiah would enter earth in the flesh and shed blood for our sins. God has chosen the exact perfect time for the Messiah to return one day and complete the restoration for those who put their faith in Him and to unleash His wrath on those who continued to say, “not now, I’ve got this. I’ll do this myself.”
Challenge: Pray for those in your life still trying to do it all on their own and rejecting Jesus as Savior.