subject of providence, see Philippi, Glaubenslehre, 2:272-284; Calvin, Institutes, 1:182-219; Dick, Theology, 1:410-448; Hodge, Systematic Theology, 1:581-616; Bibliotheca Sacra, 12:179; 21:584; 26:315; 30:593; N. W. Taylor, Moral Government, 2:294-326.
Providence is God?s attention concentrated everywhere. His care is microscopic as well as telescopic. Robert Browning, Pippa Passes, ad finem: ?All service is the same with God ? With God, whose puppets, best and worst, Are we: there is no last nor first.? Canon Farrar: ?In one chapter of the Koran is the story how Gabriel, as he waited by the gates of gold, was sent by God to earth to do two things. One was to prevent King Solomon from the sin of forgetting the hour of prayer in exultation over his royal steeds. The other was to help a little yellow ant on the slope of Ararat, which had grown weary in getting food for its nest, and which would otherwise perish in the rain. To Gabriel the one behest seemed just as kingly as the other did, since God had ordered it. ?Silently he left The Presence, and prevented the king?s sin and helped the little ant at entering in.? ?Nothing is too high or low, Too mean or mighty. if God wills it so.?? Yet a preacher began his sermon on <401030>Matthew 10:30 ? ?The very hairs of your head are all numbered? by saying: ?Why, some of you, my hearers, do not believe that even your heads are all numbered!?
A modern prophet of unbelief in God?s providence is William Watson. In his poem entitled The Unknown God, we read: ?When overarched by gorgeous night, I wave my trivial self away; When all I was to all men?s sight Shares the erasure of the day; Then do I cast my cumbering load, Then do I gain a sense of God.? Then he likens the God of the Old Testament to Odin and Zeus, and continues: ?O streaming worlds, O crowded sky. O life, and mine own soul?s abyss, Myself am scarce so small that I Should bow to Deity like this: This my Begetter? This was what Man in his violent youth begot. The God I know of I shall ne?er Know, though he dwells exceeding nigh. Raise thou the stone and find one there, Cleave thou the wood and there am I. Yea, in my flesh his Spirit doth flow, Too near, too far, for me to know. Whate?er my deeds, I am not sure That I can pleasure him or vex: I, that must use a speech so poor It narrows the Supreme with sex. Notes he the good or ill in man? To hope he cares is all I can. I hope with fear. For did I trust This vision granted me at birth, The sire of heaven would seem less just Than many a faulty son of earth. And so he seems indeed! But then, I trust it not, this bounded ken. And dreaming much, I never dare To dream that in my prisoned soul The flutter of a trembling prayer Can move the Mind that is the Whole. Though kneeling nations watch and yearn, Does the primeval purpose turn? Best by remembering God, say some, We keep our high
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