There are lots of Christians who want to know the will of God for their lives, the problem is they don’t really know or understand what the will of God is…
In fact, you can segment the will of God into four categories and these help us get a better handle on what this elusive concept really is.
The four categories are:
- God’s ‘decretive’ will
- God’s ‘preceptive’ will
- God’s ‘permissive’ will
- God’s ‘sovereign’ will (which is almost the same as His decretive will but more complex)
God’s sovereign will is by far the most complex and brain straining concept to understand so we’ll leave it as the last one to look at. In this program, we’ll take a look at God’s decretive will.
God’s decretive will is when He alone decrees that something is determined to happen, for example, God decreed the universe and all that is in it would exist… and it does. God decreed that His Son would be born a human and would die for the sins of mankind… and He did. God’s decretive will is also known as His Sovereign will. He decreed He’d be born to a virgin in Bethlehem and betrayed for 30 pieces of silver. All these things and so many more all happened because God decreed that they would happen.
God’s decretive will is entirely according to His heart and His purposes.
Job 23:13, ‘He is unique and who can turn Him? What His soul desires, that He does.’
We can’t alter or thwart what God has decreed.
Psalm 2:2-8, ‘This kings of the earth take their stand and the rulers take counsel together against the Lord and against His Anointed, (speaking of the Messiah) saying, “Let’s tear their fetters apart and cast away their cords from us!” He (that is God) sits in the heavens and laughs, the Lord scoffs at them. Then He’ll speak to them in His anger and terrify them in His fury, saying, “As for Me, I have installed My King upon Zion, My holy mountain. I will surely tell of the decree of the Lord: He said to Me, ‘You are My Son, today I have begotten You. Ask of Me and I’ll surely give the nations as Your inheritance, and the very ends of the earth as Your possession.”’
The world wants to cast God away and undermine His plans and God’s response is to simply laugh at them and issue them a warning not to be so foolish. Nothing will prevent God’s plans.
you can’t have an alternative consequence to the decretive will of God, it will be exactly what God has decreed it will be
God also proves Himself through His decretive will, revealing the end from the beginning.
Isaiah 46:10, ‘Declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times things which have not been done, saying, “My purpose will be established, and I’ll accomplish all My good pleasure.”’
God rules over His creation ensuring the absolute unfolding of His decreed will.
Acts 17:24-28, ‘The God who made the world and all things in it, since He is Lord of heaven and earth, doesn’t dwell in temples made with hands; nor is He served by human hands as though He needed anything since He Himself gives to all people, life and breath and all things. He made from one man every nation, of mankind to live on all the face of the earth, having determined their appointed times and the boundaries of their habitations, that they’d seek God if perhaps they might grope for Him and find Him, though He isn’t far from each one of us. For in Him we live and move and exist, as even some of your own poets have said, “For we also are His children.”’
In many ways, you can see God’s decretive will very clearly in Genesis 1, where we see God speak His will and it comes into being. He said, “Let there be light”…and there was light. In fact, you can’t have an alternative consequence to the decretive will of God, it will be exactly what God has decreed it will be and it doesn’t matter what our preferences, biases or delusions may be.
We can’t change or alter God’s decretive will, no matter how much effort we might engage in to change it. That’s seen very clearly in Psalm 2, where the leaders of the nations of the world engage in plotting and scheming to overthrow God, His Son and His decretive will for humanity. God’s response is to laugh and scoff at their efforts.
God has made the decree for human history to unfold in a particular manner and as it unfolds, God’s plan of redemption comes to its complete fruition. Do we always understand why God decrees for things to happen the way they do? No. In many ways, it’s beyond our comprehension, but we can look at history and see how God maneuvered humanity and events to bring about His decreed purposes and we ‘WOW’ over what He’s done.
What that does for us, is give us assurance and confidence that since He’s brought humanity this far according to His divine decrees, He can certainly see us through our personal lives and lead humanity to our ultimate redemption when His Son returns.