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prov·o·ca·tion - something that provokes, arouses, or stimulates. pant - to long eagerly; yearn. a collection of thoughts intended to provoke and inspire. these posts are hoping to encourage people to think, especially Christians, and pant even harder for the waterbrooks of the Lord. If you are not a believer in Christ Jesus, I welcome your perspective and encourage your investigation on these matters.

Saturday, April 08, 2006

Extolling Exhaustive, Meticulous Sovereignty

As I have mentioned earlier, I have been working my way through some of the most difficult questions concerning the Christian life including providence, causality, sovereignty/free will, concurrence/compatibilism, etc. and I thought I’d share some of my thoughts and finds on P&P. I don’t know how much I will be able to share, but I thought I’d start with this gem.

For those of you who uphold God’s exhaustive and meticulous sovereignty over all, you will undoubtedly enjoy this poem. May it be meat for your meditation and encouragement for His exaltation.

Sov’reign Ruler of the skies, Gracious, ever wise; All my times are in thy hand, All events at thy command.

His decree who form’d the earth Fix’d my first and second birth; Parents, native place, and time, All appointed were by him.

He that form’d me in the womb, He shall guide me to the tomb; All my times shall ever be Order’d by his wise decree.

Times of sickness; times of health; Times of penury and wealth; Times of trial and of grief; Times of triumph and relief;

Times the tempter’s power to prove; Times to taste the Saviour’s love All must come, and last, and end, As shall please my heavenly Friend.

Plagues and deaths around me fly; Till he bids, I cannot die; Not a single shaft can hit, Till the God of love sees fit.

John Ryland (1753-1825)

Note: ""penury" = extreme poverty Source: The Providence of God by Paul Helm (Downer's Grove, IL: InterVarsity), 1993.

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