First of all, let’s see what is written in God’s Word concerning our lives. Hebrews 9:27 tells us about ourselves. It says, “And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment.” It is written in God’s Word that all have an appointment with death. Everyone born will die. (The only exception to this rule is if the Lord returns and raptures us out. 1 Corinthians 15:51 says, “Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep (die), but we shall all be changed.” What else does God’s Word say about our lives? Job 14:5 says about man, “Seeing his days are determined, the number of his months are with thee, thou hast appointed his bounds that he cannot pass.” The Lord knows all there is to know about us. He knows the very second we will be born and He knows the very second we will die.

We have this emphasized in Psalm 139:15-16, “My frame was not hidden from You, When I was made in secret, And skillfully wrought in the depths of the earth; Your eyes have seen my unformed substance; And in Your book were all written The days that were ordained for me, When as yet there was not one of them.” King David understood that even before he was born, the Lord knew him and that a certain amount of days “were ordained for me.” So, according to the Word, our lives will all go as these verses indicate. We are all born, and we will all die. The Lord knows the exact dates!

What about our actions? Is it written, and thus declared, how we shall live our lives? Let’s consider the words of the Lord Jesus in Luke 13:34, “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, which killest the prophets, and stonest them that are sent unto thee; how often would I have gathered thy children together, as a hen doth gather her brood under her wings, AND YE WOULD NOT!” The Lord’s desire was that the nation of Israel would receive Him as their foretold Messiah, but they refused Him. The decisions we make will determine how we live our lives and where we will spend eternity. Joshua told the children of Israel in Joshua 24:15, “…choose you this day whom ye will serve…” A choice was given and individual decisions had to be made. We find the Lord talking to the children of Israel in Deuteronomy 30:19 saying, “I call heaven and earth to record this day against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore CHOOSE LIFE, that both thou and thy seed may live.” Again, a choice was given and individual decisions had to be made. Here, though, the Lord plainly made known His will…CHOOSE LIFE. Can you imagine the Lord’s frustration and sadness as He asks His people in Ezekiel 18:31, “Why will ye die?”

There are promises the Lord makes to us, if we will obey Him, and He makes promises to those who do not obey Him. We read in 1 John 5:12, “He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life.” If you have the Son, which means if you have him as your own savior by believing in Him, you have eternal life…that’s a promise. If you do not have the Son because you refuse to accept Him as your savior, you do not have life, and that is also a promise.

There are certainly times the Lord will openly interfere in our lives to accomplish His perfect purpose. In Daniel, chapter 2, King Nebuchadnezzar cast Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego into a fiery furnace because they would not bow to his image. This was not their time to go, so the Lord protected them from the flames of the fire. In Daniel, chapter 6, King Darius cast Daniel into a den of lions because he would not cease to pray to the true God. This was not his time to go, so the Lord protected him by closing the mouths of the lions. In Acts, chapter 12, Herod put Peter into prison with the intention of killing him. It was not his time to go, so the Lord sent an angel to rescue him. Notice however, that in this same chapter, Herod killed James…and the Lord did not prevent that. It was his time to go and the Lord allowed his death.

I hope we can see that we are responsible to live in faith before God. We are responsible to receive Christ as our savior. About 80 times in the Bible, we have this expression, “It is written.” All those things will surely come to pass. But, in dealing with individual souls, we are responsible for our own actions. We learn in 2 Peter 3:9 that, “The Lord is…longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.” This is God’s will for each one of us, yet each one of us has to decide whether we will obey God’s Word and accept His Son, Jesus, as our own savior. (258.8)