Author Jerry Bridges introduces his expository Bible study on the sovereignty of God with one question requiring a two-fold answer from the reader: “Can you trust God?” In other words, is God dependable (worth of trust) during times of adversity and do you have a strong relationship with God so that you believe He’s with you in your adversity even though there’s no visible evidence that He is?
But what makes trusting God so difficult? The author tells us that adverse circumstances often don’t make sense and can’t be explained. In addition, we often don’t know how long those circumstances will last or how painful they will be. Dr. Bridges adds,”The sovereignty of God is often questioned because man doesn’t understand what God is doing. Because he does not act as we think He should, we conclude He cannot act as we think He would.”
Yet confidence in God’s sovereignty is crucial to our trusting Him, as this foundational statement from the author points out: “If there is a single event in all of the universe that can occur outside of God’s sovereign control, then we cannot trust Him.”
One paradox of our belief and acceptance of God’s sovereignty is that the more our acceptance grows, the more we tend to question His love. In contrast, the author quotes Philip Hughes: “That he cares not is just as unthinkable as he can not.”
Trust is not a passive stance, but a devout and ardent act by which, through the Holy Spirit’s power, we lay hold and cling to God’s promises in the face of overwhelming adversity with thanksgiving, worship, humility, forgiveness, crying out to God, and seeking God’s glory.