Most of us would say that God can do anything. He is sovereign. Most of us would say we believe that.
But I would like to challenge that on some level…God didn’t stop Adam and Eve from eating of the tree of the knowledge of Good and Evil. Why not? He gave them free will to make a choice. We are not robots. So was God sovereign then? (I would argue yes, he still was sovereign and knew that they would make that choice and had already made a provision for sin in Jesus.)
In Matthew 13 and Mark 6:5, there is the story of when Jesus went to his hometown. The story is rather fascinating if one is studying the sovereignty of God. Speaking of Jesus, the scriptures say “Now He could do no mighty work there, except that He laid His hands on a few sick people and healed them.” There are other stories in the bible that could be looked at.
These events indicate God’s desires and plans are hindered by decisions men make and the condition of men’s hearts. The great Old Testament city of Ninevah was saved at the preaching of a reluctant prophet named Jonah who didn’t even want to be there, but who finally made it after a detour. But 100 years later, the city fell into such depravity again that it was destroyed.
Men can either live in the realm of darkness where demonic powers control them, or men can live in the light, where God’s truth is. It’s always man’s choice. But I believe God is always trying to bring man to the light. That is His desire.
The children of Israel were brought out of Egypt in a mighty display of God’s delivering power, crossed the Red Sea on dry ground with Pharaoh’s forces coming in behind them, then saw the waters close in on the Egyptian forces. They saw wonderful acts of God’s power to feed them and give them water when they needed it, keep clothes and shoes on them for 40 years, but yet Hebrews Chapter 4 has this to say about them:
“Let us therefore fear, lest, a promise being left us of entering into his rest, any of you should seem to come short of it. For unto us was the gospel preached, as well as unto them: but the word preached did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in them that heard it.“
God gave them every reason to believe in and trust Him, yet they did not. We should not miss the times of our visitation when God is speaking to us or showing us things. We need to pay attention.
Psalm 103:9 says that God “will not strive with us forever….” That means there is an end point in a person’s life as well as an end point in the history of the earth when “in the dispensation of the fullness of the times He might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven and which are on earth—in Him.” Ephesians 1:10.
It is God’s will, HIs desire, that all men be saved and come to the knowledge of the truth, but yet we see that all men do not choose Him. Why not? It is God’s will, HIs desire, but yet men have the choice to reject Him and His ways.
God does not always get His way, it would appear, perhaps in the short term. God does not want people to be separated from Him forever in hell. But mankind is still definitely on the way to a destination that is prophesied in the bible, where Jesus is “waiting till His enemies are made His footstool.” Hebrews 10:13. That IS going to happen. Let us keep looking up, look for and even hasten the day of His coming as we grow in holy living.
2 Peter 3:11-12 “Therefore, since all these things will be dissolved, what manner of persons ought you to be in holy conduct and godliness, looking for and hastening the coming of the day of God, because of which the heavens will be dissolved, being on fire, and the elements will melt with fervent heat?“