"SILENCE AND SOVEREIGNTY"
By Rev. Tom Tuura
Pastor of Christ Lutheran Church
2021 Theme: "You are the Light of the World"
A couple of things come to mind this month. Hopefully two extremes. Silence. Quiet. It is nice to have peace and quiet. And the other, perspective on God’s sovereign control over our world.
There is so much noise in our world. I have to admit that following a decent snow, of say six to eight inches, which used to be fairly common back home, it would be a quiet wonderland of beauty. Unfortunately it was very cold too, and throw in some wind and its not fun anymore, but I digress. A quiet wonderland of solitude is a regular dose of medication we need in our weary souls.
Psalm 62 is an example, of the many reminders and even commands in Scripture. The Psalmist said, “Truly my soul silently waits for God; from Him comes my salvation. He only is my rock and my salvation; He is my defense; I shall not be greatly moved. (Psalm 62:1,2)
What a concept, to wait silently for the Lord! Silence is a forgotten virtue, and a mental health necessity. We’ve heard of waiting on the Lord. Often it is the toe tapping, nervous, looking at the clock every five seconds waiting. No, the Psalmist says my soul waits S I L E N T L Y.
The Psalmist repeats himself in verse 5. “My soul, wait silently for God alone, for my expectation is from Him. He only is my rock and my salvation; He is my defense; I shall not be moved.”
The verse above says one more thing, “God alone”. We have far too much going on in our schedules, homes, relationships and jobs. And our entertainment often only adds to it. Our problem is we cut out our relationship to God in worship and silence, because we can. Everything else demands our participation. There’s always that person, event, or appointment with arms crossed with a fixed stare, and audible alarm demanding our attention. And because God’s speaks in silence, His demands are easy to ignore.
There’s a third bonus word here too, which almost escaped our notice, O N L Y. Do you see it there in verse 1? I don’t think its the same thing as the previous word. So we have this: Can we wait SILENTLY, for God ONLY and ALONE?
God only and alone is nothing to fear. That’s why Jesus went to a quiet place, alone to be with His Father. The Psalmist says wait SILENTLY for God A L O N E.
The other extreme, is the noise of politics. We all are really weary of this. But I’ll throw this our there, because we need to be acquainted with this too. This should help quiet our anxiety.
The Bible mentions some of the great kings and rulers of even secular history, either by name or by their reign, from the Pharoahs, to Sennacherib, Cyrus, Darius, and Augustus, not to mention David and Solomon. Some God exalted, and some He humiliated and humbled. Daniel interpreted a dream belonging to one of the great historic kings of earth, Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon, involving several of the successive kingdoms of history, (Daniel ch 2) and their demise.
In our Sunday sermons I’ve been discussing these kings and prophets and how God easily manipulated and managed even their evil intent for His own Kingdom and glory.
And another example, from the New Testament, none other than St. Peter and St. John the apostles, prayed this question from King David, “Why did the nations rage, and the people plot vain things? The kings of the earth took their stand, and the rulers were gathered together against the Lord and against His Christ.” (Acts 4:25-28). Who were those rulers? Herod and Pontius Pilate. What did they do? Only what His hand and purpose determined to be done, (v 28).
So once again, as a new “ruler” is inaugurated, we need to remember that God is still on the throne and they will only do “whatever Your hand and Your purpose determined before to be done.”
Because we have that hope and trust in God, we know that we can ourselves pray for them, and in general, submit to them, and honor them, which Christians have done throughout history, with few exceptions. Because they themselves are subject to God.
Paul then reminds us of the spiritual forces of evil and rulers of darkness of this age which are the true forces we wrestle.
Whatever your feelings about this new ruler, we can all be assured of this one thing, God is on the throne, and they will accomplish His sovereign purposes, whether they want to or not.
Quiet, God alone, and His sovereign power. What do we have to fear? Nothing.
That’s my view from the Blackberry Patch Pulpit