As Christians, we believe in the sovereignty of God. The sovereignty of God means that He has all authority over the whole earth. God is sovereign ever since the beginning of time. The Bible even says that God is sovereign over our salvation, which can be hard for some Christians to grasp. Some Christians think that human free will trumps God sovereignty. Not sure where they get this idea, but it is out there.
The Bible does tell us God is sovereign, but humans still have a responsibility. What is our human responsibility in light of the sovereignty of God? Derek Thomas wrote:
The assertion of divine sovereignty is not without further questions that should be addressed.
First, there is the question of evangelism. If God is sovereign in all matters of providence, what is the point of exerting human effort in evangelism and missions? God’s will is sure to be fulfilled whether we evangelize or not. But we dare not reason this way. Apart from the fact that God commands us to evange-lize—“Go therefore and make disciples of all nations” (Matt. 28:19)—such reasoning ignores the fact that God fulfills His sovereign plan through human means and instrumentality. Nowhere in the Bible are we encouraged to be passive and inert. Paul commands his Philippian readers to “work out your own salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure” (Phil. 2:12–13).
Second, there is the question of ethics. We are held responsible for our actions and behavior. We are culpable in transgression and praiseworthy in obedience.
Third, in relation to civic power and authority, there is the question of God’s sovereignty in the determination of rulers and government. God has raised up civil governments to be systems of equity and good and peace, for the punishment of evildoers and for the praise of them who do well (Rom. 13:3; 1 Peter 2:14). But this is also true of evil powers and corrupt regimes that violate the very principles of government itself; these are also under the sovereign government of Almighty God.
Fourth, in the question of both the origin and continued existence of evil, the sovereignty of God meets its most acute problem. That God does not prevent evil from existing seems to call into question His omnipotence or His benevolence. Some non-Christian religions try to solve this problem by positing that evil is imaginary (Christian Science) or an illusion (Hinduism). Augustine and many medieval thinkers believed part of the mystery could be solved by identifying evil as a privation of the good, suggesting that evil is something without existence in and of itself. Evil is a matter of ontology (being). Reformed thought on this issue is summarized by the Westminster Confession of Faith:
God, from all eternity, did, by the most wise and holy counsel of His own will, freely, and unchangeably ordain what-soever comes to pass: yet so, as thereby neither is God the author of sin, nor is violence offered to the will of the crea-tures; nor is the liberty or contingency of second causes taken away, but rather established. (3:1)
God is the “first cause” of all things, but evil is a product of “second causes.” In the words of John Calvin, “First, it must be observed that the will of God is the cause of all things that happen in the world: and yet God is not the author of evil,” adding, “for the proximate cause is one thing, and the remote cause another.” In other words, God Himself cannot do evil and cannot be blamed for evil even though it is part of His sovereign decree.
God is sovereign, and in His sovereignty He displays His majestic glory. With out it, we would have no being, no salvation, and no hope. Soli Deo gloria.