Who Is Driving Your Life?
By: Brian A. Yeager
We live in a world full of bad influences (I John 2:15-17 and I John 5:19). While Christians are expected not to conform to this world (Romans 12:1-2), such still occurs. We all should be able to cite the Scriptures that warn us about evil influences in our lives (Proverbs 1:10-19, Proverbs 4:14-16, Proverbs 13:20, Proverbs 19:27, Matthew 26:41, I Corinthians 5:6, I Corinthians 15:33, Ephesians 5:1-11, II Timothy 2:14-18, II John 9-11, etc.). That being said, this is not what we are going to discuss in this article.
Influence is not what people often think of when they consider what causes righteousness and evil. Many people are convinced that when they do good God has supernaturally caused them to do so. On the other hand, those same people think that people who do evil have been made to do so by Satan (some even think God is behind that too).
Chapter three of the “Westminster Confession of Faith” says this: “God from all eternity did by the most wise and holy counsel of his own will, freely and unchangeably ordain whatsoever comes to pass; yet so as thereby neither is God the author of sin; nor is violence offered to the will of the creatures, nor is the liberty or contingency of second causes taken away, but rather established” (http://www.reformed.org/documents/index.html?mainframe=http://www.reformed.org/documents/westminster_conf_of_faith.html).
Then, there are people who will think that God or Satan is behind everything, but in some “mysterious way” (http://myorthodoxy.wordpress.com/2011/09/08/why-does-god-work-in-mysterious-ways/). Think about something that should be obvious… If God were behind the driver’s seat of the lives of men and women, would anyone ever do something wrong? The answer is, NO! Sin causes spiritual death (Romans 6:23). God doesn’t want anyone to be spiritually lost (Ezekiel 18:31-32 and I Timothy 2:3-4). That then leaves us with some questions. One of those questions is obvious; who does God want to be in the driver’s seat of your life?
God Expects You To Be The Driver
Neither God nor Satan makes decisions for anyone. Notice the following Scriptures that PROVE that God put you in the driver’s seat of your life: “Then shall they call upon me, but I will not answer; they shall seek me early, but they shall not find me: For that they hated knowledge, and did not choose the fear of the LORD: They would none of my counsel: they despised all my reproof. Therefore shall they eat of the fruit of their own way, and be filled with their own devices… And with many other words did he testify and exhort, saying, Save yourselves from this untoward generation… Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness? And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel? And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you, And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty… Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling… But Christ as a son over his own house; whose house are we, if we hold fast the confidence and the rejoicing of the hope firm unto the end… For we are made partakers of Christ, if we hold the beginning of our confidence stedfast unto the end” (Proverbs 1:28-31, Acts 2:40, II Corinthians 6:14-18, Philippians 2:12, Hebrews 3:6, and Hebrews 3:14).
You cannot read the Scriptures above, be honest, and think that you do not have control over what you do. God has clearly given us the power to choose right or wrong (Deuteronomy 30:15-20). If we choose to do evil, that choice causes God grief in His heart (Genesis 6:5-9). We’d better never try to blame God when we make those wrong choices either. God does not tempt us to do evil (James 1:13-16). God has done something though that has a huge impact on our salvation.
As The Driver, Where Should We Get Our Directions?
While God will not make us do something, He does give us plenty of guidance. That guidance, contrary to popular opinions rooted in ignorance, is not through direct influence. The guidance we get from God is through His words. The inspired word of God gives us wisdom and fully equips us to carry out every good work (II Timothy 3:15-17). His word gives us the light along the paths we travel in life (Psalms 119:105). God’s word gives us correction (Proverbs 6:23 and II Timothy 4:2). When the word of God abides in us (Colossians 3:16), we can overcome the wicked one (I John 2:14). That point brings us to another question. God doesn’t make us turn away from Him, but what about Satan?
Does Satan Steer Us In The Wrong Direction?
First, we should realize that when you’re in control that means no one else is. That should answer this question since we’ve proven already that God has put us in control of our lives. Secondly, we need to understand that God has power over Satan and his angels (Jude 6 and Revelation 20:1-2). That does not mean that Satan’s influence is gone from this world. Think about this in a clear, reasonable fashion. God created man upright. Man chose not to remain upright (Ecclesiastes 7:29). Satan tempted Eve and she in turn tempted Adam (Genesis 3:1-19). Both Adam and Eve sinned. The Scriptures reveal that it was man who sinned, not Satan making them sin (Romans 5:12).
We are the drivers of our lives. We have to make the right decisions to be saved. Neither God nor Satan is to be blamed or credited with making you do anything. You and I are responsible for our decisions (Isaiah 3:10-11, Jeremiah 2:19, Ezekiel 18:20, Matthew 12:34-37, Romans 2:5-10, II Corinthians 5:10, and Galatians 6:7-9). Therefore, when presented with a decision to make, let’s be sure we make the right choice (Psalms 119:30 and Luke 10:38-42).
Volume 12 – Issue 52 - September 16th, 2012