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Potent Prooftext: He Watcheth Me

02 May 2011 by David

Q. 18. What are God's works of providence?
A. God's works of providence are his most holy, wise, and powerful preserving and governing all his creatures; ordering them, and all their actions, to his own glory.

Q. 19. What is God's providence towards the angels?
A. God by his providence permitted some of the angels, willfully and irrecoverably, to fall into sin and damnation, limiting and ordering that, and all their sins, to his own glory; and established the rest in holiness and happiness; employing them all, at his pleasure, in the administrations of his power, mercy, and justice.

Q. 20. What was the providence of God toward man in the estate in which he was created?
A. The providence of God toward man in the estate in which he was created, was the placing him in paradise, appointing him to dress it, giving him liberty to eat of the fruit of the earth; putting the creatures under his dominion, and ordaining marriage for his help; affording him communion with himself; instituting the Sabbath; entering into a covenant of life with him, upon condition of personal, perfect, and perpetual obedience, of which the tree of life was a pledge; and forbidding to eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, upon the pain of death.

Are not two sparrows sold for a cent? And yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father. But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. So do not fear; you are more valuable than many sparrows. —Matthew 10:29–31

What a comfort this passage is. This surely is not the deist’s god, who watches from a distance while the world runs itself. This is the one true God: the God of the Bible; the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob; the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ — our God! Our God is no passive observer. He is personally involved in the smallest, most insignificant events. Take heart! You are not alone. “His eye is on the sparrow,” and you are certainly more precious to him than any number of sparrows.

But the sparrow does fall — this cannot be overlooked. The Lord gives us no promise of earthly comfort or safety. Hard times will come. We will suffer. We will die. Like the sparrow, we will fall. But, as the sparrow flies or falls only by the will and providence of its creator, so we also live, suffer, and die in his hand. He has promised to be with us always (Matthew 28:20), to supply all our needs (Philippians 4:19), to limit our temptations and provide our escape (1 Corinthians 10:13), and to work trials for our good (James 1:2–4). He has promised, in the end, “the crown of righteousness … to all who have loved His appearing” (2 Timothy 4:8).

These are God’s works of providence: to carry us through, from beginning to end, in his hand. “His eye is on the sparrow, and I know he watches me.”