Thursday, April 23, 2020

Trusting in the Power of God

Are you struggling with any fears or worries today? If so, we have a Mighty God who is up to the task of strengthening us! Martin Luther wrote in his wonderful hymn A Mighty Fortress Is Our God, "A mighty fortress is our God, A bulwark never failing; Our helper He amid the flood of mortal ills prevailing." We have an all powerful God who deeply loves us and desires to strengthen us! I have been greatly challenged by Psalm 86 and find great comfort in David's reminders to us of the power of God to help in our time of need. Take not of verses 7-10:
Psalm 86:7-10 In the day of my trouble I will call upon thee: for thou wilt answer me.  (8)  Among the gods there is none like unto thee, O Lord; neither are there any works like unto thy works.  (9)  All nations whom thou hast made shall come and worship before thee, O Lord; and shall glorify thy name.  (10)  For thou art great, and doest wondrous things: thou art God alone.
Notice David's determination to pray in v.7. When trouble came to David he knew enough to bow in prayer. Back in v.1 David asked God to hear (answer) him because he had a great need. David seems to be asking for God's presence to comfort him, but the implication seems to be that he does not "feel" God's presence. So again, here in v.7 David calls upon the Lord. Notice that David is determined to call upon his great God even when he does not "feel" God's presence because he knows the theological truth that God is there for Him. We cannot depend on feelings, but we must depend on God's truth! So David calls upon God through his troubles and trusts that God will answer (v.7).

Notice in v.8 that David understood that the false gods of the nations around him were impotent; no ability to act for they are the figment of man's imagination. What have the false god's ever created or destroyed? Elijah, on Mount Carmel, challenged the worshippers of Baal to call upon their gods to send down fire to burn up their sacrifice (1Kings 18:22ff.). So they cried and cried unto their gods, but nothing happened! Notice 1Ki 18:26-27-
And they took the bullock which was given them, and they dressed it, and called on the name of Baal from morning even until noon, saying, O Baal, hear us. But there was no voice, nor any that answered. And they leaped upon the altar which was made.  (27)  And it came to pass at noon, that Elijah mocked them, and said, Cry aloud: for he is a god; either he is talking, or he is pursuing, or he is in a journey, or peradventure he sleepeth, and must be awaked.
But when Elijah called upon Yahweh, the fire came down and consumed his sacrifice (1Kings 18:31-40).  "Gods" of man's imagination can do nothing! So why do so many today, including Christians, look for help and comfort through idols? Yes, idols. When we look to anything other than our God, we are looking to idols. Idols of philosophy. Idols of psychology. Idols of friends thoughts. Idols of our own thinking. We may even turn to the idols of shopping, sports, eating, etc. We may be tempted to turn to anything to find relief from our problems and frustrations. But listen friend, only God can guide, comfort, and help us!

In v.9 David also found comfort that eventually all nations will be brought under the rule of God in the Millennial Kingdom! He had confidence in the Lord's universal sovereignty and saving plan for the Nations. David sees God's mercy extended beyond Israel. The Abrahamic Covenant promised salvation even unto the Gentiles (Genesis 12:3; 22:18; 28:14). As a gentile, I am especially glad that God's care, mercy, and love extends beyond the Jews.

David then again focuses on God's power in v.10. As seen with many of David's Psalms, he drew hope and strength from rehearsing God's wonderful acts. David says that God does "wondrous things." The Hebrew word means to do something extraordinary, or difficult, especially His acts of deliverance and judgment. These are supernatural acts that defy our understanding, amaze us, and cause us to praise Him. Acts like the crossing of the Red Sea, providing manna/food from heaven, providing water from a rock, feeding Elijah by the ravens, and Joshua's crossing the Jordan River at flood stage. Friends, God is all powerful and can help you through any problem that you have today! Charles Spurgeon wrote, "Being good, God is ready to forgive; being great, He works wonders." 

Listen! Things in your life may be discouraging you and may even seem hopeless, but God can fix them or see you through them. Only God can truly help you! There is no where else to turn. Focus on God's mercy, love, and power! Don't turn to "idols." God is able and delights to help His children. There is nothing in your life to great for Him! Deal with your sins (1John 1:9), humble yourself, and turn to God in full trust and watch Him work on your behalf!

No comments:

Post a Comment