What IS THE sovereignty of god?

The sovereignty of God is one of the many attributes given to the Lord. It is a critical doctrine for the Christian to embrace because it determines the strength of every other doctrine. The sovereignty of God speaks of His ruling governance over everything in the universe. This entails His omniscience (all knowledge), omnipotence (all powerful), and omnipresence (always present everywhere). It is through these characteristics that God exerts His power and control over time, space, and matter.


We must understand that God’s sovereignty makes Him an autonomous being that relies on nothing and no one. His behaviour is not dependant on humanity or any other created thing. This relates to God’s aseity and eternality. In the fullness of His great wisdom, God decides what He will do and holds the power to do so. He exerts His control in any way that pleases Him, not needing permission from anyone (Psalm 115:3). Therefore, we must assume that any act from God is without mistake and without fault. He is completely good, just, and right in everything He chooses to do (Psalm 89:14).


What is clear about this is that His actions inform us of His will and agenda. God’s will is supreme above all other wills. Therefore, humanity although they possess a high degree of free-will, could never override the will of God. The first reason is that God has foreknowledge of every human thought and behaviour. He does not react to our actions in surprise because He already knew of them. Secondly, God does everything within His counsel and control to protect and preserve His will in the universe (Ephesians 1:11). Thus, God allows humanity to operate in their own freedom but never to a point where they could thwart God’s plans (Isaiah 14:27; Job 42:2). This is why we see God taking His time to precisely reveal things to humanity. Everything He says and does falls within His perfect timing (2 Peter 3:8).


For some, this level of control and foreknowledge can be perplexing, even to the strongest of Christians. However, the fact that everything in our lives is perfectly held within the hands of God ought to be the most comforting reality. Even if the whole world falls into error, God’s plans will never fail and will triumph over all things. He knew of it already and His plans are already in motion. Therefore, we have the greatest of hopes because the Lord never sleeps nor slumbers and works all things together for the good of those whom He loves (Psalm 121:4; Romans 8:28). We have no reason to worry because the Lord is supremely in control over every situation in our lives. We have all the more reason to go to the Lord because He alone can bare all anxieties and give to us the peace which surpasses all understanding (Philippians 4:6-7).

Although the Lord has governing authority over all things, it does not remove the responsibility of human beings. When we commit sin, we cannot blame God as is if He is the one responsible. He may have allowed you to make that wrong decision, but He is never at fault for those sinful behaviors. We sin simply because we desire our will over the will of God (James 1:13-15). Therefore, we live in a world where humanity lives in constant rebellion against God's will unless they accept His gift of grace and turn from their depraved lifestyle. In this sense God's sovereignty still exists even while evil is permitted. Eventually God will judge all evil and restore all things (Ecclesiastes 12:14).


The sovereignty of our God is consequently the most comforting doctrine the Christian can ever believe in. It will be something that strengthens your faith in God through every trial of your life (James 1:2-4). You can trust in the Lord completely because He alone can deliver us and see us through every battle and difficulty.

Isaiah 25:8-9

8     He will swallow up death forever.
The Sovereign Lord will wipe away the tears
    from all faces;
he will remove his people’s disgrace
    from all the earth.
The Lord has spoken.

9 In that day they will say,

“Surely this is our God;
    we trusted in him, and he saved us.
This is the Lord, we trusted in him;
    let us rejoice and be glad in his salvation.”