RERUN: Trust in the Lord with All Your Heart

by Paul Tautges | January 31, 2018 8:52 am

Trusting God is one of those challenges we as Christians talk about, but may not necessarily define. We encourage one another to “trust the Lord,” but we are not sure what it really means. We also tend to view it as something optional, there are times we trust God and times we do not. But it is more serious than that. Jerry Bridges writes in his book Trusting God, Even when Life Hurts[1], “I have spent a good portion of my adult life encouraging people to pursue holiness, to obey God. Yet, I acknowledge it often seems more difficult to trust God than to obey Him….Yet it is just as important to trust God as it is to obey Him. When we disobey God we defy His authority and despise His holiness. But when we fail to trust God we doubt His sovereignty and question His goodness. In both cases we cast aspersions upon His majesty and His character. God views our distrust of Him as seriously as He views our disobedience.” What does it really mean to trust God? Proverbs 3:5-6 answers that question, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.”

THE REQUIREMENTS FOR TRUSTING THE LORD (v. 5-6a)

Charles Bridges, a minister in the Church of England in the early 1800’s, wrote in his commentary on Proverbs[2], “Man with all his pride feels that he wants something to lean to. As a fallen being, he naturally leans to himself, to his own foolish notions and false fancies. Human power is his idol. His understanding is his God….This is the history of the fall; the history of man from the fall; the dominant sin of every unhumbled heart; the lamented and resisted sin of every child of God.” Walking in God’s wisdom is the opposite of trusting one’s own heart.

THE REWARD FOR TRUSTING THE LORD (v. 6b) God promises clear direction to those who trust in Him. Throughout biblical history, believers have always sought the Lord’s guidance through pleading in prayer. Here are just a few examples: “O LORD, lead me in Thy righteousness because of my foes; make Thy way straight before me” (Ps 5:8); “Lead me in Thy truth and teach me, for Thou art the God of my salvation; for Thee I wait all the day” (Ps 25:5); “Teach me Thy way, O LORD, and lead me in a level path, because of my foes” (Ps 27:11); “Teach me to do Thy will, for Thou art my God; let Thy good Spirit lead me on level ground” (Ps 143:10). In Scripture, we find at least five assurances of God’s guidance.

  1. God will guide into pleasant paths (Ps 23:1-2).
  2. God will guide in making decisions (Ps 25:8-9).
  3. God will guide to the end of life (Ps 48:14).
  4. God will guide by wise counsel (Ps 73:24).
  5. God will guide into understanding the truth (Ps 143:10; Jn 16:13).

Psalm 37:3-5 is a soul-strengthening Scripture for every believer who is struggling to trust God: “Trust in the LORD, and do good; dwell in the land and cultivate faithfulness. Delight yourself in the LORD; and He will give you the desires of your heart. Commit your way to the LORD, trust also in Him, and He will do it.” This is the promise of God when we trust in Him with all our heart.

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Endnotes:
  1. Trusting God, Even when Life Hurts: https://www.biblicalcounselingbooks.com/products/trusting-god-w-study-guide
  2. commentary on Proverbs: http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B003OQUPPM/counoneanot-20
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