God guides the affairs of the nations

On the face of it, you can understand why people think that God has lost interest in managing human history. Today we fret over full-scale jihad in the Middle East, shaky management of nuclear weapons, failed states that provide havens for terrorists, kleptocrats who plunder instead of govern, and terrible ongoing refugee crises.

Yet our loving God chooses to stay engaged with his world not only on the micro level—with you personally—but also on the macro level with the rise and fall of nations. When you’re feeling panicky that the world is out of control, let the prophet Isaiah’s promise reassure you: “This is the plan determined for the whole world; this is the hand stretched out over all the nations. For the Lord Almighty has purposed, and who can thwart him?” (Isaiah 14:26,27).

The answer to Isaiah’s question: Nobody. Here’s the thing—God works it both ways. Sometimes he uses Christians to carry out his divine plans. And sometimes he uses seemingly unbelieving kings and emperors, men like Nebuchadnezzar the Babylonian and Cyrus the Persian, as his personal agents. It’s all good. We’ll be okay.

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