God Controls Nations
God Controls Nations
In a number of places in Scripture we can see God’s Providence at work in the nation of Israel. In judges chapters 13-16 we read the story of Samson. In this passage we find that the Israelites once again did evil in God’s sight. God delivered them into the hands of the Philistines for 40 years. During this time a man from the tribe of Dan named Zorah’s wife was barren. God sent His angel to appear to her and tell her that she would have a son. They named him Samson.
God set the requirements for a Nazirite in numbers 6:1-21. A Nazirite is a sacred person who was concentrated for divine service for a specific period of time as a result of a vow and commitment to God. The vow and commitment could be made without the person’s knowledge or approval as in Samuel’s case. Three of the most famous Nazirites were: Samuel – 1 Samuel 1:11, Samson – Judges 13:3-5, John the Baptist – Luke 1:14-15.
After Samson grew up he went visiting to a nearby Philistine city. Sampson saw a Philistine woman that was beautiful to him. He lusted for this woman. He returned home and tells his parents to get this woman for him as his wife. His parents reply “isn’t there an acceptable woman among our people”. Samson replies “get her for me she’s the one to become my wife”.
Sampson and his parents do not know that this was God’s plan all along: Judges 14:4 His father and mother did not know that it was from the LORD, for he was seeking an opportunity against the Philistines. At that time the Philistines ruled over Israel.
The Philistines had been ruling over Israel for 40 years. Samson’s going to visit the Philistine city was the fulfillment of God’s purpose. God permitted it, that it might be a means of bringing about the deliverance of Israel from the Philistine rule. As the story progresses God uses Sampson’s anger to free His people from captivity. As we read in Scripture such marriages were forbidden for the Israelites, in order to keep them separate from the idolatrous nations such as the Philistines.
There are a number of passages where God intervenes in events so that His purpose and will would be fulfilled. Joshua 11:20; 1 Kings 12:15; 2 Kings 6:33; 2 Chronicles 10:15; 22:7; 25:20; Psalm 115:3.
The Law expressly forbids intermarriage with the nations around them – Exodus 34:11-16; Deuteronomy 7:1-4; Ezra 10:2; Nehemiah 13:27.
God told the Israelites that he would drive out the Amorites, Canaanites, Hittites, Perizzites, Hivites, and Jebusites. The rationale for the prohibition to the seven nations of Canaan applied equally to all other idolaters. They will turn away your sons from following after God – Deuteronomy 7:3-4.
Neither Sampson nor his parents realized that God’s Providence was at work. God was seeking an occasion to bring about His judgment upon the Philistines. Through Samson God would bring devastation and death upon the Philistines. The marriage to the Philistine woman was God’s way of stirring up Samson’s anger against the enemies of God’s people. The Philistines trick Sampson and he leaves and the woman is married to another man. While the readers of Judges 14 know God’s secret the main characters in chapter 14 do not – Judges 14:4.
In Scripture we see numerous passages that refer to God’s sovereignty over nations, governments, and rulers. There are about 50 references to God’s controlling nations and rulers. When man has a problem understanding what God has said – God I believe repeats: Ephesians 1:11 In him we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to the purpose of him who works all things according to the counsel of his will,
Other Scriptures Psalms 103:19; Isaiah 17:3; Daniel 4:31; 4:36; 5:18; 7:27; 11:4.
God controls all events of history. All the decisions of the rulers, Kings, and parliaments. All the actions of their governments, army, and navy serve His will.
What events in our world today do you see God’s Providence?