In light of the dominant cultural narrative and yet another contentious election year, we need to be reminded that the Lord Jesus is holding all things together.  “Christ is the one through whom God created everything in heaven and earth.  He made the things we can see and the things we can’t see – kings, kingdoms, rulers, and authorities. Everything has been created through him and for him.  He existed before everything else began, and he holds all creation together” (Col. 1:16-17).  Jesus will return and culminate all this by giving the kingdom back to His Father “who gave his Son authority over all things” and make him “utterly supreme over everything everywhere” (I Cor. 15:28).      

We need to remember often who really is in charge.  In Matt. 28, Jesus tells us, “I have been given complete authority in heaven and on earth.”  It is all too easy to think of ourselves as the potter rather than the clay.  In Jeremiah 18, the prophet is told to “go down to the shop where clay pots and jars are made.  I will speak to you while you are there” (v.2).  Jeremiah observed the potter rejecting a jar that did not turn out as the potter had hoped.  “So the potter squashed the jar into a lump of clay and started over” (v.4).  God reminded Judah (as He reminds us), “O Israel, can I not do to you as this potter had done to his clay?  As the clay is in the potter’s hand, so are you in my hand” (v.5). 

God then declared, “If I announce that I will build up and plant a certain nation or kingdom, making it strong and great, but then that nation turns to evil and refuses to obey me, I will not bless that nation as I said I would” (v.9-10).  Jeremiah was to go and warn all Judah and Jerusalem: “This is what the Lord says: I am planning disaster against you instead of good.  So turn from your evil ways, each of you, and do what is right” (v.11). 

Then we have this fateful reply from the people: “Don’t waste your breath We will continue to live as we want to, following our own evil desires” (v.12).  God was preparing disaster for his people. Only if there was repentance could that disaster be averted.  God knew their hearts; he knew their response would be, “Don’t waste your breath.”  This accurately describes much of our public mindset today.   

In Isaiah 29, the prophet accuses the people of hiding their plans from the Lord. “Woe to those who go to great depths to hide their plans from them the Lord, who do their work in darkness and think, ‘Who sees us? Who will know?'” (v.15).  Isaiah confronts this mindset: “How stupid can you be?  He is the potter, and he is certainly greater than you. You are only the jars he makes!  Should the thing that was created say to the one who made it, ‘He didn’t make us?’  Does a jar ever say, ‘The potter who made me is stupid'”? (v.16).   How true this is of our nation’s present mentality.

May our response be like Isaiah’s when he later acknowledges God as our creator: “…Yet, Lord, you are our Father. We are the clay, and you are the potter.  We are all formed by your hand” (Is. 64:8).  He then cries out to God in prayer: “Oh, don’t be so angry with us, Lord.  Please don’t remember our sins forever.  Look at us, we pray, and see that we are all your people” (Is. 64:9).