That God is sovereign means that He IS God, the absolute governor of all things. This has profound implications for us: It means He chooses goodness or severity.
Like Joseph, we need to realize that God—not ourselves—is the Creator, engineering events that form us into what He wants us to become.
In the example of a child summoned by a parent to clean up his room, the child's dawdling and complaining are not predestined nor are they part of God's will.
It can be encouraging to us that our patriarchs and the prophets had serious doubts, but God overrode all their fears in accomplishing His purpose.
Unless we acknowledge God's sovereign authority in our lives, following through with the things we learn from scripture, we, like atheists, will not see God.
Rather than having an apathetic relationship toward God, we must ardently, earnestly, and fervently seek God in order to imitate His behavior in our lives.
Works are not the cause of salvation, but instead are the effect of God's creative efforts at bringing us into His image—a new creation.
After our calling, we must seek God and His way, for our conduct is motivated by our concept of God. Coming to know God is the church's biggest problem.
The Laodiceans fail to reciprocate Christ's love for them. The comfort of prosperity blinded them to their spiritual condition, especially their need for Christ.
Correct actions become a sign—a witness—even without any preaching, which is why God's words are symbolically bound to the hand rather than the tongue.
John Ritenbaugh reiterates that Deuteronomy (the Old Covenant in its fullest form) constitutes instruction for the Israel of God, serving as a compass and guide, preparing God's people to enter the Promised Land. None of Deuteronomy is done away. The singular book that was read by Shaphan to Josiah was Deuteronomy; the curses in …
Jesus commands His followers to take our cross and follow Him. Does He mean to carry a pagan symbol, or is there a deeper meaning to His weighty words?
David Grabbe, claiming that the command to take up the cross has been sullied, tainted, and moreover smeared by Protestant heretical syrup, insists that the venerating of the cross (explicitly violating the Second Commandment) pre-dated Christianity by several centuries, having served as the monogram for the Babylonian god …
God's solution to mankind's separation was sending a second Adam, Jesus Christ, to make reconciliation possible. Fasting shows our dependence on God.
The ultimate shame for a covenant people is to be found disloyal. God will be faithful to His purpose for humankind and will pursue it to its glorious end.
Using assumptions, some have concocted some nine conflicting calendars. The preservation of the oracles has not been entrusted to the church but to the Jews.
John Reid emphasizes that we have a responsibility after our calling to conform to the image of Jesus Christ, actively giving of ourselves to overcome. God has called us in order that we glorify Him in our behavior, being His representatives. God wants His people to be just like Him, to imitate Him, to adopt His very nature. If …
The primary function of a priest is to assist people in accessing God so that there can be unity with God. A priest is a bridge-builder between man and God.
We all tend to allow familiarity to lure us into carelessly taking something for granted. This is particularly dangerous regarding God and His purpose for us.
John Ritenbaugh, continuing his comparison of the timid, insignificant sparrow with the virtually unnoticed, timid Church, reiterates that God has complete oversight over the awesome plan of creating offspring in His image. Consequently, we should not fear Satan, his demons, or the world, but we should fear and respect the One …
Even though a Christian's potential is so wonderful, it is still necessary for God to motivate His children to reach it. This begins with the fear of God.
John Ritenbaugh assures us that God is involved in the minute details of every converted person's life just as much as He is in the major historical world events. As a new creation of God (II Corinthians 5:17) we receive continuous, meticulous, detailed attention through the creative activity of His grace which never stops. God, …
The fault of the Old Covenant was with the hearts of the people. Christ took it upon Himself to amend the fault enabling us to keep the commandments.
God has blessed us with the Sabbath, a period of holy time, when He redeems us from the clutches of our carnality and this evil world.
God, following a pattern, routinely calls the lowly and weak to guard against pride. God will transform the weak of this world through His Holy Spirit.
If we love another person, we like to think about him/her, to hear about him/her, please him/her, and we are jealous about his/her reputation and honor.
John Ritenbaugh stresses that the day-to-day choices we make have far-reaching spiritual consequences. When we incrementally learn to fear God, we make a choice to preserve our eternal life. God initiated our calling as an expression of His love and grace. Contrary to popular misconception, the law was given after salvation (as …
At the time of the end, sin will be so pervasive and so compelling that our only resource for enduring its influence will be our relationship with God.
John Ritenbaugh, reflecting on Solomon's ruminations about life being seemingly futile and purposeless, reiterates that a relationship with God is the only factor which prevents life from becoming useless. As many celebrities and public figures withdraw to spend more time with families, so must we withdraw from the rat race of …
God has a vision for us, a vision He has been planning from the foundation of creation, an awesome plan to bring us into His very family, giving us His mind.
God spreads His Word liberally among the world's people. Besides God's direct involvement in converting people, the difference between one growing in it and another "dying on the vine" is the soil in which the Word is planted, explained in Jesus' Parable of the Sower.
John Ritenbaugh reiterates the dominant themes, including (1) Preparing to receive our inheritance (2) Learning to fear God (3) God's grace and (4) God's faithfulness. We will not be prepared to execute judgment in the Millennium unless we are experientially persuaded of God's faithfulness to His Covenant and of His intolerance …
John Ritenbaugh, reminding us that Jesus handpicked the twelve apostles for a specific work, notes that there is a strong possibility that God has also handpicked each one of us to fulfill a particular role in the Body. Like an engineer on a building project, Jesus Christ has constructed a blueprint with detailed specifications. …
Works demonstrate our faith, our response to God's calling and His freely given grace. Reciprocity is always a part of our relationship with God.
Once we accept God's sovereignty, it begins to produce certain virtues in us. John Ritenbaugh explains four of these byproducts of total submission to God.
We must thoroughly examine ourselves, exercising and strengthening our faith, actively giving love back to God, to avoid taking Passover in a careless manner.