Trust in the Lord not in man

“It is better to trust in the Lord, than to put confidence in man.” Psalm 118:8

Doubtless the reader has been tried with the temptation to rely upon the things which are seen, instead of resting alone upon the invisible God. Christians often look to man for help and counsel, and mar the noble simplicity of their reliance upon their God.

Does this evening’s portion meet the eye of a child of God anxious about temporals, then would we reason with him awhile. You trust in Jesus, and only in Jesus, for your salvation, then why are you troubled? “Because of my great care.” Is it not written, “Cast thy burden upon the Lord”? “Be careful for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication make known your wants unto God.”

Cannot you trust God for temporals? “Ah! I wish I could.” If you cannot trust God for temporals, how dare you trust Him for spirituals? Can you trust Him for your soul’s redemption, and not rely upon Him for a few lesser mercies? Is not God enough for thy need, or is His all-sufficiency too narrow for thy wants? Dost thou want another eye beside that of Him who sees every secret thing? Is His heart faint? Is His arm weary? If so, seek another God; but if He be infinite, omnipotent, faithful, true, and all-wise, why gaddest thou abroad so much to seek another confidence? Why dost thou rake the earth to find another foundation, when this is strong enough to bear all the weight which thou canst ever build thereon?

Christian, mix not only thy wine with water, do not alloy thy gold of faith with the dross of human confidence. Wait thou only upon God, and let thine expectation be from Him. Covet not Jonah’s gourd, but rest in Jonah’s God.

Let the sandy foundations of terrestrial trust be the choice of fools, but do thou, like one who foresees the storm, build for thyself an abiding place upon the Rock of Ages.

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Just in Time

May the God you serve all the time save you! DANIEL 6:16

Look at Jonah in the fish belly—surrounded by gastric juices and sucked-in seaweed.… He prays.… Before he can say amen, the belly convulses, the fish belches, and Jonah lands face first on the beach.

Look at Daniel in the lions’ den; his prospects aren’t much better than Jonah’s. Jonah had been swallowed, and Daniel is about to be.…

Or look at Joseph in the pit, a chalky hole in a hot desert. The lid has been pulled over the top and the wool has been pulled over his eyes.… Like Jonah and Daniel, Joseph is trapped. He is out of options. There is no exit. There is no hope.… Though the road to the palace takes a detour through a prison, it eventually ends up at the throne.…

Such are the stories in the Bible. One near-death experience after another. Just when the neck is on the chopping block, just when the noose is around the neck, Calvary comes.

He Still Moves Stones

Tragic Lot

“Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful.” (Psalm 1:1)

One of the most tragic figures in all of Scripture is that of compromising Lot, Abraham’s nephew, who renounced the land of promise for the sinful society of Sodom, ultimately to lose everything of importance.

His slide into apostasy, as traced in Genesis 12-19, seems to parallel the progression described in today’s text of not becoming an ungodly believer.

Lot is first mentioned as traveling with Abram and Sarai from their homeland to Canaan in obedience to God’s command (Genesis 12:4-5; 13:5). A petty problem arises which surely could have been resolved (13:6-10), but Lot chose (v. 11) to walk in the counsel of the ungodly. “But the men of Sodom were wicked and sinners before the Lord exceedingly” (v. 13).

Lot soon found a home in the city itself, not content to merely herd his flocks in the fertile valley. By standing in the way of sinners, when Sodom was attacked by enemies, he was captured (14:12) and later rescued by Abram (vv. 14-16).

Lot’s identification with wicked Sodom did not end there, as it should have, for when the city’s wickedness was beyond God’s forbearance, Lot was found sitting in the seat of the scornful, a leader of the city, sitting in the gates with the town fathers (19:1). Lot was a “just” |or “righteous”| man, “vexed with the filthy conversation of the wicked” (2 Peter 2:7), but his actions (Genesis 19:8) and his lack of spiritual influence even within his own family (vv. 14-16, 31-38) testify to the horror of such a compromising lifestyle.

May God grant us all the persevering faith of Abraham and not the compromising faith of Lot.
JDM

Troubled on every side?

“We are troubled on every side.” (2 Cor. 7:5.)

WHY should God have to lead us thus, and allow the pressure to be so hard and constant? Well, in the first place, it shows His all-sufficient strength and grace much better than if we were exempt from pressure and trial. “The treasure is in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us.”

It makes us more conscious of our dependence upon Him. God is constantly trying to teach us our dependence, and to hold us absolutely in His hand and hanging upon His care.

This was the place where Jesus Himself stood and where He wants us to stand, not with self constituted strength, but with a hand ever leaning upon His, and a trust that dare not take one step alone. It teaches us trust.

There is no way of learning faith except by trial. It is God’s school of faith, and it is far better for us to learn to trust God than to enjoy life.

The lesson of faith once learned, is an everlasting acquisition and an eternal fortune made; and without trust even riches will leave us poor.—Days of Heaven upon Earth,

“Why must I weep when others sing?
‘To test the deeps of suffering.’
Why must I work while others rest?
‘To spend my strength at God’s request.’
Why must I lose while others gain?
‘To understand defeat’s sharp pain.’
Why must this lot of life be mine
When that which fairer seems is thine?
‘Because God knows what plans for me
Shall blossom in eternity.'”