We have a weak and limited view of God. Because our relationship with Him is often driven only by our personal concerns, we forget that He is the God who moves nations.
“He has established His throne in the heavens, and His sovereignty rules over all” (Psalm 103:19 NASB). While God is “intimately acquainted with all our ways” (Psalm 139:3), He is also overseeing all of human history.
In His rule, God’s judgments play an essential role. Like pain to the human body, God’s judging hand can rest on a man, a family, a church, a community, or a nation for His purposes.
When God was preparing Moses as an instrument to be used in delivering His people from Egypt, He proclaimed that He would “lay My hand on Egypt and bring out My hosts, My people the sons of Israel, from the land of Egypt by great judgments” (Exodus 7:4). Spurgeon said that God’s hand is “very helpful when it uplifts, but it is awful when it presses down” (Treasury of David, Vol. II, p. 91).
These judgments came in the form of plagues that were awful but effective. In the end, a hardened Pharaoh (who thought he was the most powerful force in the world) bent to the will of the ultimate King. And this is one of the purposes of God’s judgment: to bring us to the end of ourselves and into submission to the will of God.
What we often fail to understand is that the will of God is “good and acceptable and perfect” (Romans 12:2). It is the best possible path for us and for everyone we are responsible for. God’s judgments are His tool to bring such pressure in our lives that we will see the value of making any necessary adjustment to align ourselves with His perfect, gracious plan.
The Ultimate Purpose
The ultimate purpose of everything is God’s glory. God announced this to Moses and Aaron so they would be clear about His intent:
“The Egyptians shall know that I am the LORD, when I stretch out My hand on Egypt and bring out the sons of Israel from their midst” (Exodus 7:5).
He heard the cry of His children and remembered His covenant. And in the end, the recipients of His judgments knew that He is God and there is no other.
This is something we should know and believe without the necessity of such judgments. And this is the most foundational belief from which every other right thought comes.
He is God. He is the great I AM, the One who made us, owns us, loves us, is merciful toward us, comes to redeem us.
He is the One who has plans of good and not evil for us all the days of our lives … the One who had planned before the foundation of the world to bring a Deliverer for our ultimate and eternal salvation … the One whose lovingkindness never ceases. He is God and can do whatever He pleases, but He is good and always does what is right.
Our Current Pressure
There is hardly a pastor or theologian that would not agree that right now, America is under the remedial judgment of God. We are feeling His mighty hand pressing down.
Part of this judgment is the removal of His hand of protection, provision, and blessing. He often gives us what we want in our pride and sinfulness, which is the worst thing that could possibly occur but one of His most effective judgments.
He is calling us to wake up and recognize His lordship, to surrender our will to the will of Him who has loved us with an everlasting love. His judgments are the precursor to revival and awakening if we will hear Him and cry out to Him. And … it begins with me.