Many years ago, there was found in an African mine the most magnificent diamond in the history of the world. It was presented to the king of England in hopes it could be displayed in his crown. The king sent it to one of the most skilled diamond cutters in Amsterdam. Once it was in the lapidary’s hands, he took the gem of priceless value and cut a notch in it. He then struck a hard blow and the remarkable jewel lay in two pieces in his hand. Some would have thought his actions were a criminal and careless mistake. However, for weeks, the lapidary had studied the gem for its quality, defects, and its lines of cleavage. He had planned with detailed precision where to strike the blow. When the blow was struck, he did the one thing which would bring that gem to its most perfect shapeliness, radiance, and splendor. The impact which seemed to ruin the precious stone was, in fact, the rescuing of it.
In Mark 7, we read the account of Jesus healing a deaf and dumb man. When the multitude saw the miracle, neither manners, money, nor military might could keep them quiet. In fact, in verses 36 and 37 they expressed these words, “they…were beyond measure astonished, saying, He hath done all things well…” It is worth noting that the word “astonished” means “to strike with a blow.” Like an expert lapidary, Jesus delivered a blow that revealed the glory of God in their hearts. It made such an impression upon them that their conclusion was not that He did some things well, or even a few things well, but rather “all things well.” The Lord’s responses are always well-timed. The Lord’s rationale always hits the mark. The Lord’s results are always victorious. It is foolish to attempt to measure the Lord by the standards we hold for men or even angels. Puritan preacher Thomas Watson once said, “God can make a straight stroke with a crooked stick.” We may not be able to explain, equate, or emulate all the Lord does, but we can say “He hath done all things well.” Notice why the Lord still leaves us astonished at His works.
Nothing is beyond His recognition. John noted in I John 3:20, “God…knoweth all things.” The word “knoweth” is deeper than simply being acquainted with facts. It means He is intimately aware and touched by what He knows. When the children of Israel were laboring under the iron fist of Pharaoh and certain in their heart the Lord had forgotten them, He said to Moses in Exodus 3:7, “I have surely seen the affliction of My people…for I know their sorrows.” Beyond Egypt, the wilderness would be a testing of suspense, strain, and sorrow, but Moses would conclude in Deuteronomy 4:7 that God is “nigh…in all things…” No matter what the circumstances of our life may be, we are never out of the view of the Lord’s eyes. The Lord never blinked in David’s distresses, Daniel’s dilemma, Samson’s defeat, or Jonah’s disobedience. During the trial of Jesus, we are told “they…blindfolded Him.” The Lord is never left in the dark when it comes to seeing through material, through mysteries, or through men!
Nothing is beyond His reach. The Apostle Paul wrote in Colossians 1:17, “and by Him all things consist.” The word “consist” paints a beautiful picture of the Lord’s care in our lives. It simply means “to hold together.” We often hear people speak of being in the will of God, but have you ever felt the best explanation for your life was that of being on the wheel of God? In Jeremiah 18, the prophet observed the potter who “wrought a work on the wheels.” The word “wrought” means “to fashion” and is a picture of the clay being pressed and squeezed against the spinning potter’s wheel. As the wheel turns at its rapid pace, if it were not for the strong hands of the potter, the clay would utterly fly apart. It was the pressure of the Lord’s hands that enabled Baruch to keep writing, Nehemiah to keep building, and kept Elijah from suicide. The pressures of life are many, but often when we can find no way out, if we would simply pause in our struggle we would discover our lives are being pressed against the very heart of God Himself.
Nothing is beyond His repair. In Psalm 57:2, David explained, “God… performeth all things for me.” The word “performeth” means “to complete, to bring to a perfect end.” When it comes to reading novels, people are drawn to great authors. But, have you ever wondered what makes a great author. A great author is someone who has the ability to take every person, plot, and predicament and somehow weave them all together by the time the story ends. That is exactly what Paul was trying to express about the Lord when he wrote in Romans 8:28, “and we know that all things work together for good…” Although Joseph found himself in a pit and a prison, the Lord raised him to a platform. When Mordecai was headed for certain tragedy, the Lord turned it into triumph. When Samson had forfeited his strength, the Lord favored him with strength one more time. No matter what plots and ploys and devil may register in our lives, the Lord is still the one who writes the final chapter!
Nothing is beyond His rule. Again, Paul declared in Philippians 3:21, “He is able even to subdue all things unto Himself.” The word “subdue” means “to put in subjection, to take control.” Simply put, the Lord is able to do “all things well” because He is the Lord of all things! That is why the Bible is clear in Matthew 19:26, “…with God all things are possible.” No matter how imposing the challenge, how impressive the foe, or how impossible the task, all things are under the controlling hand of the Almighty. It was Charles Spurgeon who once said, “If the Lord will not suffer it, neither men nor devils can do it.” Jesus astonished and amazed even His loyal disciples “that even the wind and the sea obey Him”. In fact, the only thing the Lord cannot do is that which is contrary to His nature. Perhaps David said it best in Psalm 62:11, “twice have I heard this; that power belongeth unto God.”
Have you ever wondered what is the secret of those lives who achieve beyond their spiritual abilities. Maybe the discovery is found in Paul’s words, “that God may be all in all” in our life. Only because He “giveth us richly all things” can I be “sufficient in all things” in order to “do all things”. When the Lord places His hand on your life, you may feel like nothing more than a lump of clay, but to Him, you might just be a diamond in the rough!
Your Most Proud Pastor,
© 2009 Alan Stewart
Alan Stewart: Dr. Alan Stewart has served as Senior Pastor of Rechoboth Baptist since December 1999. He attended The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, Moody Bible Institute, Covington Theological Seminary, and Mid-America Baptist Theological Seminary.
Prior to pastoring the Tennessee church, Alan was an evangelist for 15 years. He has preached revivals/pastor’s conferences in Tennessee, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, Arkansas, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, and Maryland. He also preached crusades/conferences in India, Hungary, and conducted a crusade in South Africa in August of 2009. Pastor Alan is married to Jeanne, and they are blessed with two children – Sierra and Seth.