Psalm 104 shows the scope of God’s creative power in the works of His creation so that God demonstrates his governing hand over creation. God creates, preserves and governs all things. To understand thanksgiving one must understand God’s providence. The word providence comes from two Latin words “pro” and “videre” meaning to see before hand. God is not merely a spectator, passively knowing in advance, what will happen through his foreknowledge. He knows in advance because he plans in advance. The Children’s catechism explains the doctrine of providence. “God’s works of providence are, His most holy, wise, and powerful preserving and governing all His creatures, and all their actions.”
There was a time in this country when thanksgiving was recognized as a legitimate aspect of life. Even the holiday we call Thanksgiving reminded people and especially Christians that all of our worldly goods were a result of God’s gracious hand. Today Thanksgiving is merely a long holiday weekend that marks the beginning of Christmas shopping. There are more sales advertisements in the Thanksgiving day newspaper than any two Sunday newspapers put together. We have more goods and products being consumed today than ever before. We have more to be thankful for, in the way of material wealth, than ever before. Yet, there is less interest in thankfulness than ever before. Even so, God’s government is in charge of “all His creatures and all their actions.”
Government is almost a dirty word, because we attach the wrong ideas to the concept called government. When the word government is used, most people automatically think of a political structure. Sometimes the word government reminds us of a place called Washington D.C, Montgomery, AL or any city hall in America.
The dictionary says the word government means the exercise of administrative powers. Another dictionary definition was: “the political direction and control exercised over the actions of the members, citizens, or inhabitants of communities, societies, or states.” Christians must be aware that the word government when applied to Christianity means something very different from when it is applied to political thought.
A government of the people by the people and for the people is bad thinking in biblical terms.
Divine government is defined by that activity of God whereby He rules all things sovereignly, with purpose, ultimately disposing all things according to the counsel of His will. God is the governor of the universe. No, God is not just the governor of the Universe. He is the King of the Universe. He is the cosmic monarch. But, unlike a finite monarch, God rules with a righteous right hand. As the Heidelberg Catechisms says: “Providence is the almighty and ever present power of God by which he upholds, as with his hand, heaven and earth and all creatures.
Unfortunately, American contemporary Christianity has tried to dethrone the cosmic king of the Universe and make him the president of a democracy.
God’s government extends over all creation. “Whatever the Lord pleases, He does, in heaven and in earth, in the seas and in all deep places” (Psalm 135:6). I have heard a people say that God wanted to bring revival to such and such place and God wanted to do this and that. How ridiculous; God does whatever he wants to do.
God’s government has no place for chance and luck. The common understanding of chance has to do with probabilities. At the root of chance is an event without a cause. Likewise, there is no such thing as luck. Chance and luck is nothing more than fatalism. It is an effect without a sufficient and antecedent cause.
God causes all things to come into being and God powerfully preserves all things that come into being, God powerfully governs all things that come into being.
Happy Thanksgiving is not complete without Thanksgiving for God’s Government.