Thursday, June 25, 2009

the lot is cast

I am in the middle of the Beth Moore Bible study on "Esther," subtitled, "It's Tough Being a Woman." This study has been such a blessing for many reasons, but today, day 4 of week 3, I am blessed and in awe of God's sovereignty like I've never been before.

God's name isn't mentioned in the book of Esther, but thanks to this in-depth Bible study, I can see Him and His hand all over this story! Haman, enemy of the Jews and a man with newfound political power and favor from the great Perisan King Xerxes, issued an edict that all Jews would be killed, destroyed, and annihilated on a given day. To determine the date of the murders, they cast lots, seemingly leaving it up to random chance. However, Beth Moore points out that Proverbs 16:33 says,

The lot is cast into the lap, but its every decision is from the Lord.

In all things, my God is Lord and King and in control!

Then, Haman had the edict sent out to be received by the Jews on the day of Passover. However, he must not have realized that that was the day when Jews were to tell the story of their deliverance from the Egyptians, reminding them of God's power, favor, and sovereignty, on the very day they would have received the news of the planned massacre. Haman thought he was in control, but this timing was the Lord's, who gives us hope when we feel hopeless.

I also love how God showed love and favor to the people at a time when they were scattered about, having been assimilated into Persian culture because they had chosen to stay there rather than return to Jerusalem. That means that even when I am not drawing near to God, even when I am in sin, He still knows and cares about and controls everything that is happening to me, causing all things to work together for my good. He does not forget His children, even when we forget Him.

I can think of nothing that could happen to me that could possibly be more horrifying and widespread and randomly violent than the edict Haman ordered. However, though it would probably have made the Jews feel fearful and powerless, my God was there, sovereign and in control, His hand at work through seemingly hopeless events. How much more, then, should I trust Him with all the things that cause me to feel fearful and powerless??

The lot is cast into the lap, but its every decision is from the Lord.
--Proverbs 16:33

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