Does God appoint the rulers of this world and does He control their decisions?

Howard Coles, Coleford, England

QUESTION

Does God appoint the rulers of this world and does He control their decisions?

ANSWER

It would appear from scripture that political appointments and the administration of the world are controlled by the Lord through a counsel of angels. Scriptures, which support this view, are:

1) Appointments made by the Lord

‘This matter is by the decree of the watchers, and the demand by the word of the holy ones: to the intent that the living may know that the Most High ruleth in the kingdom of men, and giveth it to whomsoever he will, and setteth up over it the basest of men’, Dan. 4. 17.

God spoke to Nebuchadnezzar in a dream communicating to him His decree as confirmed by a counsel of the watchers (angelic beings). The decree of the Most High was that he should be deposed but that his kingdom should be reserved for him once he had humbled himself. Daniel in his interpretation confirms that ‘The Most High ruleth in the kingdom of men, and giveth it to whomsoever he will . . . after that thou shalt have known that the heavens do rule’, Dan. 4. 25, 26. It would appear from these verses that whatever form of national government exists it is God who decrees who shall have the rule, elections or no elections. Verse 17 also confirms that the Lord decides who shall rule ‘the basest of men’. This description being apt for many who have ruled through history up to the present day.

Romans chapter 13 verse 1 declares that ‘there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God’. The word ‘ordained’ means ‘ordering’ or ‘arrangement’. God sets rulers in their location, changes and directs them as He pleases. This does not mean that He ‘originates’ or causes the evil dispositions of rulers, but that He ‘directs’ and ‘controls’ their appointment. This also does not mean that He always approves their conduct; or, that what they do is always right; but the power entrusted to them is from God. He has the authority to remove them when he pleases and if they abuse their power, they do so at their peril. BARNES.

2) The administrative rule of heaven

‘And he said, Hear thou therefore the word of the Lord: I saw the Lord sitting on his throne, and all the host of heaven standing by him on his right hand and on his left. And the Lord said, Who shall persuade Ahab, that he may go up and fall at Ramoth-gilead? And one said on this manner, and another said on that manner. And there came forth a spirit, and stood before the Lord, and said, I will persuade him. And the Lord said unto him, Wherewith? And he said, I will go forth, and I will be a lying spirit in the mouth of all his prophets. And he said, Thou shalt persuade him, and prevail also: go forth, and do so’, 1 Kings 22. 19-22. In these verses the curtain of heaven is drawn back and we are allowed to glimpse something of the administrative process that went on in heaven regarding an action upon the earth. In this case an evil spirit was allowed by the Lord to influence the prophets to lie to Ahab and Jehoshaphat and through this the divine will was accomplished.

3) Ruler’s decisions can be controlled by the Lord

‘The king’s heart is in the hand of the Lord, as the rivers of water: he turneth it whithersoever he will’, Prov. 21. 1. Executive decisions made by the rulers of this earth are under the permissive hand of God and if He deems it necessary to impose His authority and will, He will step in to control. This we believe has often been evidenced in time of war. Witness the illogical and sometimes irrational decisions of Hitler during World War II, which undoubtedly caused him finally to be defeated.

4) God removes rulers

‘But the judgment shall sit, and they shall take away his dominion, to consume and to destroy it unto the end’, Dan. 7. 26. Daniel chapter 7 describes the course and history of four world empires, all of this history, past and future, being under the direct control of the Lord. Verse 26 refers to the removal by the Lord of the final world empire ruler. Ultimately His rule will be in Person. We await that Day with joy!

There are 31 articles in
ISSUE (2006, Volume 61 Issue 4)

1 Corinthians 9-10 (3)

Abortion - The Moral Maze

Adjusting to permanent change

An Alert Assembly

Anna - Just an Old Woman?

Being a Christian Husband

BIBLE STUDY

BURMAH ROAD GOSPEL HALL, PENANG, MALAYSIA

Part 1. Christ and Principalities and Powers

Day by Day - Bible Commands

The Devotion of Youth

Divine, Infinite Dimensiions

Does God appoint the rulers of this world and does He control their decisions?

Editorial

Eternal Security

The Fruit of the Spirit is Self control

Gospel Work and other Activities

Heroes of the Faith – Martin Luther

A History of ‘The Haven’

Hold Your Course

I have a Friend

In Vain or Not in Vain?

The Kingdom – What the Bible teaches about the Kingdom of God

The One Gospel and its Freedom

The Problem of The Problem of Obesity

Some Thoughts on Godliness (1)

The Church in Ephesus

Views from the News

Who Cares?

Wise words from the book of Proverbs

‘Ye are fallen from grace’

This article is not part of a series

There are 47 articles by this author

Do Angels Have Any Relevance To Believers In The Present Age?

I HaveSeveral Questions Arising Out Of Malcolm Horlock’s First Article On 1 Corinthians 14

Are Demons Active Today?

How Does A Christian Deal With Feelings Of Guilt?

How Can I Know the Will of God for My Life?

Is it right for a Christian to drink alcohol?

What do we do if another Christian wrongs us?

How can a young Christian begin to witness for the Lord?

Kingfisher christian camp trust

Does 1 Corinthians 11. 1-16 deal with matters of culture?

Does the Bible teach that there’s a place, or state of existence, called Purgatory?

Christ - Is He not omniscient, all knowing?

Is it acceptable for a Christian to take part in lotteries or other forms of gambling?

How do I deal with temptation in my Christian life?

What is the difference between praise and worship?

Where did evil originate?

How could Christ increase in wisdom and stature, Luke 2. 52?

Is attendance at the meetings of the local assembly essential or optional?

What about Letters of Commendation?

Does intelligent extraterrestrial life exist? and Will God allow man to settle on other worlds?

Is it the fault of Christian parents that their children do not become Christians?

Why doesn’t the Bible tell us exactly when the Lord will return?

Should believers celebrate Christmas?

Should young christian families move to an assembly where there are other young people?

How should a believer deal with depression?

What should be the Christian’s attitude toward Muslims

Why does God allow suffering?

Does God appoint the rulers of this world and does He control their decisions?

Can very young children be saved?

Honesty - Does Truth Matter?

What does the Bible say about same-sex marriage?

What happens to a christian when they die?

Four ‘Yea Lord’s’ in the Gospels

Question Time

Gold and the Glories of the Lord Jesus

Thoughts on the Love of God

Vision for Outreach

Man and the Gospel

How Long

Question: Is it good for us to prepare for the Lord’s supper?

The Christian and the World

The Coming of the Son of Man

The Gospel Yesterday and Today

Question Time

Thoughts on ‘The Disciples’ Prayer’ and the Temptation of the Lord Jesus in the Wi

The King James Version and Principles of Translation - Part 1

The King James Version and Principles of Translation - Part 2