The challenge to Trust God
3:5 Trust in the LORD with all your heart, And lean
not on your own understanding;† 6
In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He shall direct your paths.† 7 Do not be wise in your own eyes;
Fear the LORD and depart from evil.† 8
It will be health to your flesh, And strength to your bones.
Trust is defined as the
confident expectation of something. To be able to trust is someone means you
have to be willing to let your guard down and feel confident that person will
not let you down. However, this type of trust does not always come easy. To
illustrate this I want to read you the story that the writer shared about
himself that wrote this Bible study.
Like the little girl many
of have trouble trusting people these days and as parents we instill this idea
into our childrenís head. Donít trust strangers, TV, what you read etc.
Even as adults we have
trouble trusting in others because a handshake doesnít mean much any more and
many have problems keeping secrets.
What are some other
reasons we have trouble trusting in people today?
Postmodernism- there is
no absolute truth.
Do you think these
concerns have made it more difficult to trust in God?
As Christian parents, we
have to be on guard for our children sake.
If we want to be able to
have peace in our lives we must learn to trust in God and the Bible is full of
examples of Godly men and women who learned to put all their trust in Him.
One great example comes
from King Jehoshaphat. He was the king of the Southern Kingdom and he was the
son of King Asa. Overall King Asa was good king who did his best to be pleasing
to God and he apparently passed on these values to his son. Not much is
recorded about King Jehoshaphat in the book of kings, but we learn a lot about
him in the book of 2 Chronicles 17-20.
As soon as Jehoshaphat
became king, his first priority was to have the law read to his people and he
wanted them to understand and live by it. No one is perfect and Jehoshaphat
proves that because he made an alliance with the evil king Ahab by allowing his
son to marry Ahabís daughter.
Because of the alliance
he had made with Ahab, Jehu the prophet came to Jehoshaphat and spoke 2 things
against him 2 Chr. 19:1-3.
1. He was guilty of
helping the wicked which of course is referring to King Ahab as he was at that
time the most wicked king that had ever lived.
2. He was guilty of
helping those who hated God. Again this is a reference to Ahab and all of
Jehu also praised him for
how he had been pleasing to God when he became king by tearing down the high
As Jehoshaphat was
working on reforming his people we find out in chapter 20 that his enemies have
joined forces and they are attacking him and he realizes that he cannot stand
against them alone so he must rely upon God and he prays a beautiful prayer
calling on God for His help.
2 Chronicles 20:1 It
happened after this that the people of
We see 4 things happening
1. He was afraid of his enemy. 2. He set out to seek the Lord. 3. He called for
a fast. 4 Everyone came together to petition the Lord in prayer. I really like
this because Jehoshaphat and his people recognized that they needed the help of
God. Their enemy was to strong and His first defense was to go to God and trust
that He would help him in his time of need.
We can learn a great
lesson from this because many times people have tendency to trust in themselves
more than they trust in God. When troubles enter their life they will do
everything in their own power to take care of it before they even consider
going to God in prayer and asking him for help. As Christians this should not
be the case. Our first line of defense when trouble enters into our life should
be seeking the Lordís help. We should not wait until we have gotten to the end
of our rope and then cry out to God. When we do this we, do not have the trust
in God that we should. †The more we learn
to depend on God, the closer we will grow toward him and realize how much we
need him in our lives.
What examples can you
think of where people trust in themselves instead of God?
Now let take a look at Jehoshaphat
2 Chronicles 20:5 Then
Jehoshaphat stood in the assembly of Judah and Jerusalem, in the house of the
LORD, before the new court,† 6
and said: "O LORD God of our fathers, are You not God in heaven,
and do You not rule over all the kingdoms of the nations, and in Your
hand is there not power and might, so that no one is able to withstand
You?† 7 "Are You
not our God, who drove out the inhabitants of this land before Your
As you can see
Jehoshaphat was pouring his heart out to God and reminding him how powerful he
is and how weak they are. He wanted God guidance because he did not know what
to do and he reminds him that these people who are attacking them are the same
ones he didnít allow the children of
I want you to notice
verse 12 again because it is important,
12 "O our God, will You not judge
them? For we have no power against this great multitude that is coming against
us; nor do we know what to do, but our eyes are upon You."†
Jehoshaphat and his
people knew that they could not defeat their enemy on their own so they did the
right thing. They put their complete trust in God and turned their problems
over to Him.
This is the attitude that
we must learn to have. If we would learn to involve God more in life by sharing
with Him our problems and our heartaches, we would discover that our problems
will become easier to handle and we will not feel alone because God will be
there for us because He loves us and is concerned about us. So, the next time
you find yourself not knowing what to do to turn your eyes toward God and pray
to Him and trust Him.
Next, we find out that
God answer their prayer and gives them a message.
2 Chronicles 20:14 Then
the Spirit of the LORD came upon Jahaziel the son of Zechariah, the son of
Benaiah, the son of Jeiel, the son of Mattaniah, a Levite of the sons of Asaph,
in the midst of the assembly.† 15
And he said, "Listen, all you of
So after they prayed to
God, He responded through this prophet telling they have nothing to fear
because this battle belongs to the Lord. In fact, they learn that they donít even
have to fight in it. However, they are instructed to stand before their enemy
and to watch God bring their enemy down.
When they heard this
great message from God they did not doubt it and their fear of their enemy
disappeared because they were confident in what God said. To show how much trust
they had in God they praised Him with their voices raised.
Why do think that God
wanted them to watch Him make their enemy fall? Do you think God needs an
audience? No, God knew that when they saw His power that it would help build
their faith and increase their trust in Him. Also, God wants us to face our
enemies with confidence even when He is helping us because He was us to
continue to move forward.
Perhaps one of the
reasons that we struggle with trusting in God is because we donít sit back and
reflect at what God has done for us and is doing for us.
Psalm 46:10 Be
still, and know that I am God;
Sometimes we need stop
everything that we are doing and do this. The way that we can do this is by
thinking about all that God has created for us and how much love He has for us.
We think about various people in the Bible and how God was always there for
them and how He always keeps His promises should increase our trust in Him.
When we think about how He gave His only begotten Son for us when we did not
deserve it, again it should remind us that we mean that much to God. Finally,
when we look back at our life and the prayers that we prayed that God answered,
it should cause us to praise God and have the same confidence that these Jews
had that day.
2 Chronicles 20:20 So they
rose early in the morning and went out into the Wilderness of Tekoa; and as
they went out, Jehoshaphat stood and said, "Hear me, O Judah and you
inhabitants of Jerusalem: Believe in the LORD your God, and you shall be
established; believe His prophets, and you shall prosper."† 21 And when he had consulted with
the people, he appointed those who should sing to the LORD, and who should
praise the beauty of holiness, as they went out before the army and were
saying: "Praise the LORD, For His mercy endures forever."† 22 Now when they began to sing and
to praise, the LORD set ambushes against the people of Ammon, Moab, and Mount
Seir, who had come against Judah; and they were defeated.† 23 For the people of Ammon and
Stories like these in the
OT that give us hope today because they show without a doubt that when we pray
God listens and he responds. When he says he is going to do something he does
what he says every single time. This story confirms that we can believe with
our whole hearts that the promises that are made to us under the new covenant
are absolutely true and we should be like Judah who praised and worshipped God
for what He was going to do and we should also be just as thankful for what He
has already done for us and what He is doing for us today.
We can see how much trust
Their trust paid off
because God caused all their enemies to turn on themselves and not one had
escaped and you can tell there must have been a great number of these men for it
to take 3 whole days for the people of
Once again, on the 4th
day the people rejoiced in this wonderful thing he had done to protect them and
especially since they didnít even have to fight in the battle at all.
2 Chronicles 20:27 Then
they returned, every man of Judah and Jerusalem, with Jehoshaphat in front of
them, to go back to Jerusalem with joy, for the LORD had made them rejoice over
their enemies.† 28 So they
As they made there way
back home they continued on being very thankful for what God had done for them
and the other kingdoms heard about how God had delivered them that day and
because of this they had peace all around.
So, as we can see that
Jehoshaphat and his people are great examples of putting their complete trust
†How can you and I learn to have this level of
trust in the Lord? Well, we have already talked about this some, but I want to
suggest to you that there at least 2 methods that will help us to learn to
trust in God.
1. Observe our
experiences. This means that we need to sit and think about all the blessing we
have received in our lifetime. Notice what David says about this:
Psalm 40:5 Many, O
LORD my God, are Your wonderful works Which You have done; And
Your thoughts toward us Cannot be recounted to You in order; If I would
declare and speak of them, They are more than can be numbered.
If you and I were to sit
down and start trying list all the wonderful things that God has provided for
us and done for, I donít think that we could every list them all because God
has done so much for us.
If you have been here for
the previous 2 nights then you have learned 2 things that will help add to your
First, we must open our
eyes and see how God is working all around us.
Second, we must spend
time with God by reading His Word, studying His promises and how has worked in
the lives of those in Bible that trusted Him.
We must also do like
Jehoshaphat and stand still and take time out everyday to pray to God and
reflect on all that He has done for us.
2. Alter our
expectations. Some lose faith in God because they have in their mind how things
should turn out and when they donít they become disappointed and in some cases
fall away. However, we need to remember the Word s of,
Isaiah 55:8 "
For My thoughts are not your thoughts, Nor are your ways My
ways," says the LORD.
This means that what we
think should happen and what God does are not going to be the same and we must
understand this and realize that God is in control and that He knows what is
In the example prayer
that Jesus gave to disciples He told them that they should pray, Give us this day our daily bread Mat. 6:11.
Does this mean that God is going to provide food for us with no effort on
our part. No. But, if we move forward with our faith and work at getting that
food, we can know that God will help us to be successful in what we do.
Now some people pray to
God for riches, but God has never promised to make us rich physically, but He
does make us rich spiritually because when we are in Christ and we are living
faithfully we have all the spiritual blessings that are found in Christ Eph. 1:3. Jesus has made this possible
for us as Paul says in,
2 Corinthians 8:9 For you
know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though He was rich, yet for your
sakes He became poor, that you through His poverty might become rich.
It should give us great
comfort that God is looking out for us and that He will provide for us and if
we have enough trust in Him then we should worry about things so much. Jesus
tells us why,
Matthew 6:25 "
Therefore I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what
you will drink; nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more
than food and the body more than clothing?†
26 "Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow
nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you
not of more value than they?† 27
"Which of you by worrying can add one cubit to his stature?† 28 "So why do you worry about
clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil
nor spin;† 29 "and yet I
say to you that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of
these.† 30 "Now if God so
clothes the grass of the field, which today is, and tomorrow is thrown into the
oven, will He not much more clothe you, O you of little
faith?† 31 "Therefore do
not worry, saying, 'What shall we eat?' or 'What shall we drink?' or 'What
shall we wear?'† 32 "For
after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that
you need all these things.† 33
"But seek first the
Jesus is teaching us that
our priority should be to God and His kingdom. When we can trust God enough to
put Him first in our life, then everything else will fall into place. Again, it
may not work out like we hoped, which is why must alter our expectation and
realize that God knows what is best for us. As Paul said,
Romans 8:28 ††And we know that all things work together for
good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.
Again this does not mean
that everything in our life is going wonderful, it simply means that God is
working in the background and He take those difficult moments in our life and
ultimately make something good of it when we love Him and trust Him.
A great example of this
comes from the story of Joseph. We should all be familiar with this story.
Josephsí brother could not stand him because their father loved him more and
showed him favoritism. One day they decide to kill him, but instead they sold
him into slavery. Then his brother told their father that he was killed by a
wild animal. So, even though Joseph was a faithful man of God, he had to endure
many hardships and live as slave, but God still blessed him wherever he went.
At Potiphars house
everything was going good until his wife tried to sleep with Joseph, but he
would have nothing to do with it, but of course she accused him of attacking
her and so husband had him thrown into prison and even there Joseph was put in
charge and finally we know that ends up interpreting the Pharaohs dream and
ends up being put in 2nd command. When the 7 years of famine begin,
his brothers were in trouble food wise so they had to go to
Once again Joseph saw his
brothers and Joseph wanted to teach them a lesson so he accused them of being
spies and made one of them stay behind and he wanted them to bring Benjamin back
with them and they did. He did all this so he could see his youngest brother
and he was going to have arranged to make him look a like thief and make them
leave Benjamin with them, but
Genesis 50:18 Then
his brothers also went and fell down before his face, and they said,
"Behold, we are your servants."† 19 Joseph said to them, "Do
not be afraid, for am I in the place of God?† 20 "But as for you, you meant
evil against me; but God meant it for good, in order to bring it about
as it is this day, to save many people alive.† 21 "Now therefore, do not be
afraid; I will provide for you and your little ones." And he comforted
them and spoke kindly to them.†
This great example of God
can make things work together for the good. So do not ever expect that your
life is going to be trouble free as a Christian because it not and some
Christians may even have to endure sufferings, But no matter what you have to
deal in this life we need to take the words of Paul to heart.
Romans 8:18 For I
consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be
compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.
No matter how bad things
get for us we can still have hope and trust that if we endure our hardships, we
will have a home in heaven.
Hebrews 11, gives has
been called the hall of faith because it numerous examples of those that
trusted in God and stood firm in the faith. Sometimes their faithfulness gave
the great results beyond their expectations. For example,
Hebrews 11:32 And
what more shall I say? For the time would fail me to tell of Gideon and Barak
and Samson and Jephthah, also of David and Samuel and the prophets:† 33 who through faith subdued
kingdoms, worked righteousness, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of
lions,† 34 quenched the
violence of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, out of weakness were made
strong, became valiant in battle, turned to flight the armies of the aliens.
Each of these men had
great faith and trust and God and they accomplished great things they could
have never done on their own. Sometimes we may have great things happen in our
life like this, but notice the next few verses
Hebrews 11:35 Women
received their dead raised to life again. And others were tortured, not
accepting deliverance, that they might obtain a better resurrection.† 36 Still others had trial of
mockings and scourgings, yes, and of chains and imprisonment.† 37 They were stoned, they were
sawn in two, were tempted, were slain with the sword. They wandered about in
sheepskins and goatskins, being destitute, afflicted, tormented --† 38 of whom the world was not
worthy. They wandered in deserts and mountains, in dens and caves of the
Here we have some people
that were faithful and they trusted in God but bad things happened to them and
I am sure they had something else in mind instead of being tortured and killed,
but even in circumstances like this we must learn to keep our faith and trust
because even if our earthly life ends on a rotten note, we can still rejoice in
the reward we receive that will last for an eternity. We need to remember the
words of Jesus.
"And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. But
rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.†
Also we should allow the words of
Hebrews 13:5 Let
your conduct be without covetousness; be content with such
things as you have. For He Himself has said, "I will never leave you nor
forsake you."† 6 So we
may boldly say: "The LORD is my helper; I will not fear. What can
man do to me?"
Use 1Kings 17: 8-16 if
So, how great is your
faith? Are willing to start trusting God more and making Him your first line of
defense or are you still struggling with trusting yourself or others more than
God? Well, I hope this lesson has shown how important is that we,
Proverbs 3:5 Trust
in the LORD with all your heart, And lean not on your own understanding;† 6 In all your ways acknowledge
Him, And He shall direct your paths.† 7
Do not be wise in your own eyes; Fear the LORD and depart from evil.† 8 It will be health to your flesh,
And strength to your bones.
(This VBS lesson was adapted from ď