I listened to an excellent message today by John Piper.
John Piper states so well what God has been teaching me in our missionary journey these past four plus years. I urge you to take 35 minutes and listen to this sermon!
The passage he bases his message on is John 9:1-39 where Jesus heals the blind beggar. His disciples had asked him who had sinned, his parents or the man.
"Jesus turns the question around and says, in effect, human causes are not decisive in explaining things. Divine purposes are decisive. Verse 3: "It was not that this man sinned, or his parents
, but that the works of God might be displayed
in him [God's purpose]."
The reason causes are not the ultimate explanation for things is that God is not ultimately a responder but ultimately a planner. In
other words, when God ordains that something happen,
God is not, at the bottom, responding to human causes.
He is, at bottom, planning a purpose.
The implication of this for your life is profound. No matter what mess you're in or what pain you're in, the causes of that mess
and that pain are not decisive in explaining it. What is decisive in explaining it is God's purpose.
Yes, there are causes. Some of
them your fault, perhaps, and some of them not. But those
causes are not decisive in determining the meaning of your mess or your pain. What is absolutely decisive is God's purpose. "It was not that this man sinned, or his parents, but that the works of
God might be displayed in him" (verse 3).
And if you will confess your sins, and hold fast to Jesus as your
Rock and your Redeemer and your Riches, God's purpose for
your mess and your pain will be a good purpose. It will be worth everything you must endure. We know this is true because God says so. Romans 8:28: "And we know that for those who love
God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose."