Tuesday, February 2, 2016

The Lord Provides

(1Corinthians 2: 6 - 14) However, we speak wisdom among those who are mature, yet not the wisdom of this age, nor of the rulers of this age, who are coming to nothing. But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, the hidden wisdom which God ordained before the ages for our glory, which none of the rulers of this age knew; for had they known, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory. But as it is written: “Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, nor have entered into the heart of man the things which God has prepared for those who love Him.” But God has revealed them to us through His Spirit. For the Spirit searches all things, yes, the deep things of God. For what man knows the things of a man except the spirit of the man which is in him? Even so no one knows the things of God except the Spirit of God. Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might know the things that have been freely given to us by God. These things we also speak, not in words which man’s wisdom teaches but which the Holy Spirit teaches, comparing spiritual things with spiritual. But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.

I have often wondered about the incredulous amounts of oil that has been taken out of the earth over the last hundred years by numerous nations. The level of consumption has grown exponentially each year as more countries become part of the twentieth century manufacturing and producing world. In 1872, the standard oil barrel was firmly established as 42 US gallons. A recent estimate of total world oil consumption in 2014 amounted to 20,802 barrels of oil per day which amounts to 873,684 gallons used up each day of the year or 75,927,30 barrels a year. These figures are rather astounding when one considers how much of the earth’s volume is filled with solid rock, molten magma, coal, water and natural gas which leaves one wondering about the standardized story of how the dinosaurs and the primordial forests decayed down through the ages supposedly creating these vast oil reserves, thus allowing the unbelieving world to negate God from the picture entirely. 

British Petroleum has provided an intriguing update to its global oil reserves estimate in the company's recent yearly review of energy statistics. BP raised its reserve estimate by 1.1% to 1,687.9 billion barrels, which is enough oil to last the world 53.3 years at the current production rates. However, there's likely a lot more oil left in the tank beyond what BP sees today. This statement once again leaves the primordial explanation wanting and extremely doubtful for a believer who understands that God created all things with simply a word, speaking all things into existence which remains fully under His control. 

Consider the following old testament story of God’s provision through nature and the prophet Elijah which illustrates how the needs of those who trust in Him will be fulfilled. When Ahab became King of Israel the backdrop was set for one of the most astounding shows of God’s providence through His prophet Elijah as Ahab and Jezebel continued to murder the prophets while attempting to eradicate all trust in the one true God of Israel.

(1Kings 16: 29 - 32) In the thirty-eighth year of Asa king of Judah, Ahab son of Omri became king of Israel, and he reigned in Samaria over Israel twenty-two years. Ahab son of Omri did more evil in the eyes of the Lord than any of those before him. He not only considered it trivial to commit the sins of Jeroboam son of Nebat, but he also married Jezebel daughter of Ethbaal king of the Sidonians, and began to serve Baal and worship him. 

(1Kings 17: 1 - 16) Elijah the Tishbite, from Tishbe in Gilead, said to Ahab, “As the Lord, the God of Israel, lives, whom I serve, there will be neither dew nor rain in the next few years except at my word.” Then the word of the Lord came to Elijah: “Leave here, turn eastward and hide in the Kerith Ravine, east of the Jordan. You will drink from the brook, and I have directed the ravens to supply you with food there.” 

(Elijah was on the run, fleeing from those who would take his life and he followed God’s instructions and headed out to the wilderness)

So he did what the Lord had told him. He went to the Kerith Ravine, east of the Jordan, and stayed there. The ravens brought him bread and meat in the morning and bread and meat in the evening, and he drank from the brook.
Some time later the brook dried up because there had been no rain in the land. Then the word of the Lord came to him: “Go at once to Zarephath in the region of Sidon and stay there. I have directed a widow there to supply you with food.” So he went to Zarephath. When he came to the town gate, a widow was there gathering sticks. He called to her and asked, “Would you bring me a little water in a jar so I may have a drink?” As she was going to get it, he called, “And bring me, please, a piece of bread.”
“As surely as the Lord your God lives,” she replied, “I don’t have any bread, only a handful of flour in a jar and a little olive oil in a jug. I am gathering a few sticks to take home and make a meal for myself and my son, that we may eat it and die.” Elijah said to her, “Don’t be afraid. Go home and do as you have said. But first make a small loaf of bread for me from what you have and bring it to me, and then make something for yourself and your son. For this is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says: ‘The jar of flour will not be used up and the jug of oil will not run dry until the day the Lord sends rain on the land.’” She went away and did as Elijah had told her. So there was food every day for Elijah and for the woman and her family. For the jar of flour was not used up and the jug of oil did not run dry, in keeping with the word of the Lord spoken by Elijah.

As long as God’s elect remains on the earth He will continue to provide for the needs of mankind as He sees fit in spite of the dark thinking of those who believe the world’s destiny is somehow limited and controlled by man.

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