Is there Unrighteousness with God? Have you got mad when things have not gone your way, or perhaps blamed God for your mistakes saying, well you made me? These are the questions we come too in times of distress and confusion; we get mad at God wondering what is going on! We see some people prosper that are evil or do not deserve it and the good seem to miss out on blessings and opportunities and even suffer. Here Paul so eloquently answers our hurts and questions.
Calvin saw a danger in the Reformed faith, which a tendency could crop up to just place God as sovereign and us as the elect to do nothing with our faith and call. Thus, Calvin spent most of his writing to promote our responsibility in life and duty, as well as prayer. Calvin knew that our human faulty thinking would lead to theologians to misuse the reformed principles to cover their laziness or fear to work and exercise their will for God's glory. Such as to do no evangelism, thinking that is purely the role of the Holy Spirit, yes it is, but we are still commanded to do it!
· What can we say then? People were saying that God is unfair. Paul summarizes the previous passage by saying this idea cannot pass without the attention it is due.
· Certainly not! Paul says God is indeed not unfair because God is not obligated to save anybody. For we all deserve to be condemned (Rom. 6:2, 15; 7:7).
· b.Says to Moses, Israel was chosen by God's grace and purpose (Ex. 9:16; 33:19; Duet. 7:6-8), as the elect.
· God shows mercy, therefore they as well as we have no right to question God and say He is unfair. Since God is not obligated, then we must be filled with joy, because He chose us sinners (Gratitude), so that it flows onto others (evangelism).
· Him who wills, the choices that God makes in election have not closed the doors to those individuals who were not elected (If it did, we would have "Double Predestination", those who are elected to Hell, this is not found in Scripture).
· We trust God because He is righteous; thus He makes the right decisions, we do not make the right decisions. His ways are far beyond our understanding; He is God and chooses as He pleases, period.
· How dreadful is a Christian who is self-righteous and critical of others (Ex. 9:16; 33:19). God is righteous even when He shows mercy to some and not to others.
· Pharaoh, his heat was hardened by himself and God. This does not mean God made him evil or caused injustice, rather God allowed Pharaohs own evil choices to come to its full completion to teach him, Egypt and the Jews that God is sovereign. God gave Pharaoh over to His own choices that is what God hardened means (Ex. 14:17-28).
· This Passage points to "Unconditional Election": from the Reformed Theology principles of TULIP (see website channel on Doctrines at http://www.intothyword.org/).
· You will say to me then, means blaming God for our choices. When we receive mercy we are not receiving a reward; rather His grace! Election is no excuse to sit and do nothing in service and witness to others!
· He wills, God is sovereign and we have free will, the Bible teaches both, we may not fully understand it, but there it is. We are the elect and chosen, which we must know we have no right to it. Thus, our responsibility and call must be directive and purpose driven, His purpose! To sit and hide behind theology is a coward's and reprobate's way out! Spurgeon said, "We have a chosen people, and yet His gospel is to be preached to every creature..."
Disappointments are the impact between our expectations and experiences while ignoring the promises of God. Our expectations will collide with our experiences and then create a life of anger, self-pity and resentment. We will get mad at God because what we want out of life has not been met, what we thought that is.The choice is yours and the key is where you look for your hope! This is about our circumstances and how we look at our Lord. How we see adversity and His sovereignty will totally affect how we learn and deal with it (Phil 1:27-30). What is the key? Learning our hope is in the Lord, not in our expectations (Psalm 25:4-5; Mark 9:17-27; John 16:33; 2 Cor. 12:7-10; 11:23-27; Heb. 12: 6-10)! Our great comfort is that He does care! He does love us and wants us to succeed in Life, but He wants our attention on the right avenue not the distractions.
To get over our disappointments and setbacks, God wants us to know His mercy. When we realize what He has done for us and what would be required without Christ we can't do that or be just before Him. We also need to know that our knowledge and experiences do not compare to God's. We have to be able to be God's clay, for Him to mold and shape us that you are aware of and surrendered to the Holy Spirit in all that you do.
1. When you were a child what did you think was totally unfair? What about now?
2. Have you ever felt that God is unfair? How and why?
3. In times of distress and confusion, do you call God uncaring, unconcerned or callous? Why would people do this, Christian or otherwise?
4. Do you or do you know someone who might think they have a right to be saved?
5. Do you trust God because He makes the right decisions?
6. How can you answer yours or others hurts and questions concerning the perception that God is unfair?
7. Why does God have no obligation to save us or to show mercy?
8. Why does He show mercy?
9. Our plight of doubt should not focus on the whys of life, but on the how do we respond and grow. So how can we do this?
10. Why do we have no right to criticize and question God? Yes? No? Why or why not?
11. How do you feel knowing that you, no matter how good you are or think you are deserve to be condemned?
12. How do you feel knowing that since you are condemned, He saved you anyway?
13. Since God chose you, what flows onto others because of your gratitude?
14. Why would some Reformed Groups not believe in doing evangelism?
15. Do you believe some Christians use theology as an excuse to cover their call and responsibility?
16. If so, what can you do as part of the church to prevent or turn away from such thinking?
17. Why would the choices that God makes in election, would not close the doors to those individuals who were not elected?
18. His ways are far beyond our understanding; He is God and chooses as He pleases, period. Does this statement comfort you or scare you and why?
19. Why do you suppose is it a dreadful thing for a Christian to be self-righteous and critical of others?
20. Why do some Christians only consider themselves and not others?
21. What area in your spiritual journey are you growing in lately? And what can you do to be more pliable clay, that is to grow even deeper and richer?
Remember God's character is just and fair!
©1998, 2001, 2004, Rev. Richard J. Krejcir, Discipleship Tools www.discipleshiptools.org