“God’s Plan For The Fullness Of Time” (John 19: 11, ESV) by Carley Evans


Pontius Pilate declares he has authority to condemn or free Jesus. Jesus answers, “You have no authority over Me at all unless it is given you from above.”

After hearing this statement, Pilate “seeks to release him.” The Jews, however, cry out against Jesus, claiming He is opposing Caesar’s rule. They demand Jesus’ crucifixion. The chief priests say, “We have no king but Caesar.” So, Pilate “delivers [Jesus] over to them to be crucified.” (John 19: 12, 15, 16) This is not Pilate’s desire. He wishes to free Jesus, as his wife warns that this man is holy and not to be touched. Pilate, despite his best intentions, relents — going along with the will of the crowd before him.

God holds all authority in heaven and on earth. No one has power over His purposes; no one succeeds against Him.

Even Satan seeks God’s permission to afflict us.

God asks Satan, “From where have you come?” (Job 2: 2) Satan responds that he has roamed “to and fro on the earth.” (Job 2: 2) God invites Satan to consider Job, a true servant of the Lord — a man of integrity who turns from evil “although you incite Me against him to destroy him without reason.” (Job 2: 3)

Without reason? — God destroys Job without reason?

Of course, Job’s friends maintain Job has sinned against God and this is the reason he is being destroyed. Job’s wife says it is God’s caprice, and strongly suggests that Job curse God and just go ahead and die!

God says, “Who is this that darkens counsel by words without knowledge? Dress for action like a man; I will question you, and you make it known to Me. Where were you when I laid the foundation of the earth? Tell Me, if you have understanding.” (Job 38: 2 – 4)

Essentially, Jesus says the same to Pilate. “Who are you that you think you have any authority at all over Me?”

Many respond to this truth like Job’s wife — falsely believing God “destroys without reason.” Others, perhaps only a few, know that God controls every moment in time, every motion in space. All is done with His knowledge; all is within His purposes. And all His purposes are good, perfect.

And this “is the mystery of His will, according to His purpose, which He set forth in Christ as a plan for the fullness of time, to unite all things in Him, things in heaven and things on earth.” (Ephesians 1: 9 – 10)

“Love Endures All Things” (1 Corinthians 13: 6 – 7, ESV) by Carley Evans


Love bears.
Love believes.
Love hopes.
Love endures.

Love bears, believes, hopes, endures all things, says Paul.

Job’s wife says to her husband, “Curse God and die!” (Job 2: 9)

At the foot of the Cross, “the rulers scoff at [Jesus], saying, ‘He saved others; let Him save Himself, if He is the Christ of God, His Chosen One!’ ” (Luke 23: 35)

Job’s love of God bears up under enormous pressure. Christ’s love of us and His trust in His Father endure enormous evil from the hands of men.

“Therefore, since we are surrounded by [such] great…witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endures the cross, despising the shame.” (Hebrews 12: 1 – 2)

“One thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal.” (Philippians 3: 13 – 14)

And the goal is love. “Love never ends.” (1 Corinthians 13: 8)