The Sovereignty of God
Unwanted Results of an Inordinate Emphasis on the Exercise of Sovereignty
There is an unwanted result of an inordinate emphasis on the exercise of sovereignty which is excessive desire to see God unleash power. Because men equate sovereignty with action, lack of performance diminishes the validity of the claims of sovereignty.
54 And when his disciples James and John saw this, they said, Lord, wilt thou that we command fire to come down from heaven, and consume them, even as Elias did? 55 But he turned, and rebuked them, and said, Ye know not what manner of spirit ye are of. 56 For the Son of man is not come to destroy men’s lives, but to save them. And they went to another village.
Sadly, many, as James and John, believe sovereignty must have expression in order to be of value, and any limitation of action is a loss of sovereignty. In fact, the harsher the expression of God the more valuable and certain is sovereignties’ existence. In other words, God must act so men can believe it exists. We are all too much like the Son’s of Thunder who know the record of Elijah and long to personally experience the unleashing of God’s overwhelming power so men can see sovereignty and fear.
This is a fatal flaw in the thinking of many because God is sovereign apart from expression. Sovereignty is not an action but a state of being. It is an established jurisdiction. If God remained totally inactive He would still be sovereign because expression does not make one sovereign. Expression only gives opportunity for men to experience the sovereign state. Sovereignty is rank and supreme sovereignty means supreme rank.
Sovereign rank is a state of authoritative jurisdiction in which a sovereign may act unopposed. Sovereign authority or jurisdiction is based in the sovereign’s ability to enforce and maintain all expressions of will. However, there are degrees of sovereignty.
In absolute sovereignty, as with God, the Sovereign is the ultimate power enforcing the jurisdiction of his actions and may disallow any possibility of dispute or opposition according to His personal ability to enforce His sovereignty. This being stated, the sovereignty of God rests firm because God is singularly omnipotent.
In a lesser degree of sovereignty the sovereign may be subject to a higher sovereign establishing a limited authoritative jurisdiction such as in the Magna Carta.
In the case of God, His Person is the only temperance for His sovereignty. He will never in His absolute state of sovereignty violate His Person. God alone determines the expression of His sovereighty; no one else has that ability. God may limit himself by His own sovereign choice to do so. He may revoke His self-imposed limitation as it pleases Him, and only Him. He may grant to His creation any authority He wishes, even if for a time allowing freedom of will. He may rescind such allowances at any time He wishes without destroying His sovereign state of Being or diminishing Him as God.
God, the sovereign, gave men the freedom to choose or reject his gift of salvation. At no time, does this, in any way, diminish the sovereign state of God. Freedom of choice does not diminish sovereignty, but demonstrates the unfathomable confidence of God in His own sovereign state.