by Jerry Bridges /
Read all the posts published to date in this 9-part series on God’s Providence from Cruciform’s good friend, the late Jerry Bridges. This was a teaching Jerry was presenting in the months leading up to his fatal heart attack in March, 2016.
GOD’S PROVIDENCE, PART FIVE OF NINE
In the previous post we saw that God in His sovereignty caused Genghis Kahn and the generation that followed him to conquer one fourth of the world’s population, forming the largest nation-state in human history…and then God destroyed it by using fleas. Today we’re looking briefly at ways God’s providence affects us directly in our personal lives.
1. Health and physical disabilities
Who has made man’s mouth? Who makes him mute, or deaf, or seeing, or blind? Is it not I, the Lord? (Exodus 4:11)
Have you or your loved ones faced health or disability challenges? Clearly, God is in control of every part of our bodies and how they function.
2. Financial and social standing
The Lord makes poor and makes rich; he brings low and he exalts. (1 Samuel 2:7)
Many people live to some degree in constant fear or worry over their material prosperity, their position in society, or both. But we see here that God alone ultimately determines our level of wealth or poverty.
For he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust. (Matthew 5:45)
I also withheld the rain from you when there was yet three months to the harvest; I would send rain on one city, and send no rain on another city; one field would have rain, and the field on which it did not rain would wither. (Amos 4:7)
The plain and most important meaning of these passages speaks specifically to weather conditions. That said, there is value and biblical legitimacy in understanding weather as a metaphor for other aspects of life that can seem random but are in fact subject to God’s will. That is, we all experience the blessings of good weather and the trials of bad weather, literal or otherwise. Yet our God is in sovereign control over all of it, in every place, all the time.