Mishmash of Esther 2 & 3. The wicked lust of the king and the murderous temper of Haman, used by God! A long, but worthwhile quote from the sermon (promise you’ll read it all the way through!):
“It is the wickedness of men which God sovereignly uses to fulfill His holy purposes.
“Now let’s make no mistake here, let there be no misunderstanding, let nobody go away and say that I’m saying something which I’m not saying.
“God does not approve of divorce, or of polygamy, or of murderous plots, or of drunken kings. He is against those things. But when He works His purposes, He does not work despite those things. Such is the nature of His sovereignty that He actually brings to pass His purposes by means of those things! That is the extent of the sovereignty of God in Scripture.
“Now that is a great comfort to all of us in a depraved world. There is immense antagonism to the people of God. Because we’re members of the Church of Christ, we seem often to forget that the Church of Christ is more persecuted today than it has ever been in its history. It is! In those parts of the world with no books, and no pastors, and no churches, and no fellowship, and if you ask them what they have got, the only answer they can say is, “Suffering!” That’s all they’ve got! And yet, the very wickedness that threatens to wipe them out, God is actually using that wickedness as a means to prevent them from being wiped out. He’s actually using the wrath of man as the means to praise Him, he’s actually using the sin of man as the means by which His eternal purposes come to pass.
“And I never tire of taking us back to the cross and pointing out that this happened there. It was fight of man’s wickedness to take the Lord of glory and crucify Him. That was an awful and wicked sin! But it was that awful and wicked sin which was the very means which God used – for the Son of God to lay down His life on behalf of guilty sinners.
“So although we live in a wicked world and are depressed by that wickedness, that wickedness, nonetheless, we should remember, brings to pass what God has decreed. That is an immense comfort!”
A lot of people think that God looks at the evil in this world and wishes it didn’t happen. God is love, after all. The wickedness and hate and sensuality and other sins running a muck on this planet and in the minds and hearts of people are things that God doesn’t want to happen… but they happen, and God’s only choice is to comfort those who experience it and to guilt trip people into repentance with it.
These people should be ashamed of themselves, and embarrassed that they worship a false god who has no control over anything, no sovereignty, no power over all of nature.
The true God, He does not cause the evil to happen, He does not will the evil to happen, He does not bring it about, but He uses the natural evil within human hearts to bring about His good, His loving, His powerful, His ultimate purpose.
So they can keep their sorry god. I choose to worship the God that knows evil exists, and actually uses it to bring about His plan for us.