Today we have many differing theologies about the sovereignty and providence of God. There are debates about God’s sovereignty regarding salvation, God’s sovereignty regarding creation, and God’s sovereignty regarding foreknowledge. There are a growing number of people and Christians today who believe God can only know what can be known. What they are saying in short is this, “The future cannot be known, and therefore God himself doesn’t know it.” Lately, quite a few people have approached me with questions about these very issues. On this note, I want to talk a little about Psalm 33 as I hope it will bless you as it blesses me to know that our God is a sovereign God.
Psalm 33 is a Psalm about God’s transcendent self-existence. There are two parts of the Psalm I want to look at.
“By the word of the LORD the heavens were made,
and by the breath of his mouth all their host.” v. 6
This verse speaks of God’s incomparable power. The fact that he spoke the heavens into existence, the earth into existence, the animal kingdom into existence, and molded man into existence shows that God can do what He pleases. There is of course one thing God cannot do, that which is against His character, that one thing is sin. God can however do anything that is within His character.
To say that God is omniscient, but can only know things that can be known, which would not include the future, is ridiculous. If God, by his very breath can create the heavens and by His hands create mankind, then God can know the future. There are countless passages to support this truth.
“Let all the earth fear the LORD; let all the inhabitants of the world stand in awe of him!
For he spoke, and it came to be; he commanded, and it stood firm.
The LORD brings the counsel of the nations to nothing; he frustrates the plans of the peoples.
The counsel of the LORD stands forever, the plans of his heart to all generations.” vv. 8–11
God has a plan and is not inclined to let man’s plan follow through, but instead will “frustrate” man’s plan, to fulfill his own. I don’t think this passage yields for me to go any deeper into the theology of providence and free will, but I do think that it gives us a basis to say that God has a plan, and it’s bigger than man’s, and it will be carried out. Different people with differing theologies will enter into this passage with their own presuppositions and decide how far to take this, but I don’t think we can take it any further than this: God has a plan, man has a plan, God’s plan is greater, and His plan will prevail.
I love this. I am a sinful man—I hope my plan doesn’t follow through. Praise God that his plan prevails.