"O Lord, I know that the way of man is not in himself: it is not in man that walketh to direct his steps" (Jeremiah 10:23).
A Nineteenth-Century poet boasted: "I am the master of my fate; I am the captain of my soul." The Twentieth Century Humanist Manifesto proclaims: "No deity will save us; we must save ourselves." A popular song proudly asserts: "I did it my way!"
The fact is, however, that humanism has failed. Whether exercised at the level of government paternalism or individual self-sufficiency, the notion that any man or group of men can make decisions and go their own ways with no regard to the will of their Creator is arrogant foolishness. "There is a way which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death" (Proverbs 14:12).
God does have a will for both men and nations. "In times past [He] suffered all nations to walk in their own ways. . . . And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men every where to repent" (Acts 14:16; 17:30). It would make a tremendous impact for world peace and national happiness if only our national and world leaders would formulate their policies in accordance with the revealed will of God, through His Word.
But this ideal may never be approached until Christ Himself returns. In the meantime, He has promised guidance in each individual life when that life is truly yielded to His will. No man can really "direct his steps," as our text points out, but "The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord: and . . . none of his steps shall slide" (Psalm 37:23,31).
God's will is always in accordance with His Word, of course, for He cannot contradict Himself. We can therefore confidently act on His promise: "In all thy ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct thy paths" (Proverbs 3:6). HMM