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  • Chad Werkhoven

Psalm 104 - Control, Authority & Presence

Defeat doubt by solidifying your trust in God's sovereign providence.

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Read Psalm 104

Listen to passage & devotional:


Heidelberg Catechism Q&A 26

Q. What do you believe when you say,

“I believe in God, the Father almighty,

creator of heaven and earth”?

A. That the eternal Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,

who out of nothing created heaven and earth

and everything in them,

who still upholds and rules them

by his eternal counsel and providence,

is my God and Father because of Christ his Son.

I trust him so much that I do not doubt

he will provide

whatever I need

for body and soul,

and he will turn to my good

whatever adversity he sends me

in this sad world.

He is able to do this because he is almighty God;

he desires to do this because he is a faithful Father.



My former professor, John Frame, describes God's sovereignty as having three aspects: control, authority and presence.

All three of these aspects are on display in Psalm 104.

This Psalm, like so many of them, uses beautiful poetry to describe the control that God maintains over His creation. Notice all of the active verbs: God wraps, stretches, and fits. He makes (4x), sets and rebukes.

God has this absolute control over all things because He alone has the authority to do so. Verse 32 captures God's authority: "He looks at the earth, and it trembles; He touches the mountains, and they smoke."

But it's the third aspect of God's sovereignty that we're focusing on here today: His presence. God is not just an omnipotent force scowling from a distance over the universe He called into being. Just the opposite, in fact! The entire universe depends on God's ongoing presence to provide for all of its needs on an ongoing basis.

The trees, birds, mountains, even the moon, the sea and all of its creatures "all look to You to give them their food at the proper time (v27)." Notice that it's not the presence of God that terrifies His creatures, rather it's when "You hide Your face, they are terrified."

Dig Deeper

We live in a culture of doubt and skepticism, and many people - maybe even you - worry constantly that all you have will be lost.

Today our catechism helps us escape that doubt: I trust him so much that I do not doubt...

Escape the doubt and skepticism of this world by reminding yourself often of the trust you can have in God because of the control, authority and presence He demonstrates in His Word.

  • ACKNOWLEDGE WHO GOD IS: O LORD my God, you are very great; you are clothed with splendor and majesty (v1)

  • ALIGN YOUR LIFE WITH GOD'S WILL: Pray that you will trust God's control, authority and presence so much that you will not doubt His providence.



Read the New Testament in a year, a chapter a day - Acts 27


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