Psalm 62:5-8 NLT I wait quietly before God, for my hope is in Him. He alone is my rock and my salvation, my fortress where I will not be shaken. My salvation and my honor come from God alone, He is my refuge, a rock where no enemy can reach me. O my people, trust in Him at all times. Pour out your heart to Him, for God is our refuge. Interlude
Avies paraphrase: God alone is my Source; He is my refuge from the storm, my high fortress for protection from my enemies. He is my salvation and my honor; my hope is in Him and when I am in His protective custody no enemy can reach me! I trust in Him at all times! I pour out my heart to Him in times of trouble because He is my refuge. It is in Him alone that I put my trust and my hope!
Through the last year I have seen and heard of so much fear that is going around through the internet and from well meaning friends. I have had to weed through what I chose to believe and what I believed was simply scare tactics sent from the evil one. I am amazed at how much fear has been circulated through the lives of well meaning Christians. It serves to me as an indicator of where our faith is and what needs to be taught to strengthen us to meet the challenges of our future. As I’ve read and studied God’s word throughout the last 25 years the one thing that has repeatedly been revealed to me is that God is a God of faith; He does not instigate fear in the hearts of His people, but we have an enemy who comes to steal, kill and destroy and his attacks against God’s people are based on his ability to deceive and cause us to fear what he can do more than we have faith in God’s ability to provide for, protect and bless His people. We may be going through tough times, but the God who spoke the world into existence is the One in which I place my trust and I know that He will provide and care for His own!
Psalm 118:8, 9 It is better to trust in the LORD Than to put confidence in man. It is better to trust in the LORD Than to put confidence in princes.
It has been said that Psalm 118:8, 9 are the verses that are at the very center of the Bible. I have not counted them to see if it is true; however, I did research it a little and found that there is substantiation that supports this belief. Both of these verses speak of trusting God instead of man.
Look at what it says: (Amplified Bible) It is better to trust and take refuge in the Lord than to put confidence in man. It is better to trust and take refuge in the Lord than to put confidence in princes.
There is one who we are to trust and take refuge in; God and Him alone! He is the only Source that we can count on. He is the One who will protect from the storm; provide a refuge in the time of trouble; hear and rescue us from disaster. Who are you placing your trust in? Where is your faith?
Jesus chastened His disciples for not having faith when they were in the boat crossing over the sea and a great storm arose when He was asleep in the boat and they became frightened that they were going to perish because the storm was raging around them. They woke Him from his sleep and said to Him, “Teacher, do You not care that we are perishing?” (Mark 4:38) The scripture goes on to say that Jesus arose, rebuked the wind and said to the storm, “Peace, be still!” When the sea obeyed he turned to His disciples and said, “Why are you so fearful? How is it that you have no faith?” (Mark 4:39, 40)
Could it be that God is asking us, as born again believers, the same thing in the day of our storm? “Why are you so fearful?” “How is it that you have no faith?” Jesus was right there in the boat with His disciples when they encountered the storm. God is right here with us, living within each believer by the presence of His Spirit. He is with us in the midst of our storms. Has He not said that the Greater One lives within us and is greater than he that is in the world? (1 John 4:4)
Jesus Himself cautioned His disciples about getting caught up in the tribulations that were yet to come in John 16:32, 33:
“Indeed the hour is coming, yes, has now come, that you will be scattered, each to his own, and will leave Me alone. And yet I am not alone, because the Father is with Me. “These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.”
How did Jesus overcome the tribulation of the world? By depending on the Father who was with Him. He knew His source was not in man, but in the Father. He placed His faith in God, not in man. His trust was in His Source, the One true God. He knew where He had come from and where He was going. (John 13:3) You may say, “well, He was the Son of God”; “He was God Himself, in a physical body”. And that is true, Jesus is the Son of God; the second person of the Trinity; the very exact representation of the Father. But, Jesus was also a human being, like you and me, who depended on the presence of the Holy Spirit within Him as God, His Father, had anointed Him with the Holy Spirit and power to go about doing good; preach, teaching and healing; demonstrating the power of God resident within the life of a believer. (Acts 10:38) Jesus laid His deity aside to become a human being that He might experience all that we experience in life and still overcome and be counted worthy to redeem mankind through paying the penalty for our sin. (Philippians 2:5-11) It took a sinless man to redeem the authority back that man had given to the devil through the Fall in the Garden of Eden. (Romans 5:12-21) Jesus depended on the Father, through the power of the Spirit that we might have a worthy example to follow showing us how to life by faith, just as He did.
Romans 12:3 tells us that we have all been given a measure of faith. But our success in our walk of faith depends on what we do with that measure that we have been given. Jesus’ disciples once asked Him to give them more faith and He simply responded that it only take the faith of a mustard seed to pull up a mulberry tree by its roots and plant it in the sea. (Luke 17:5,6) The size of our faith is dependent up the size of our God. Do we see God as a small God or has He been magnified in our lives to the magnificent, all-powerful God that He really is?
God told Joshua when he was getting ready to lead the children of Israel into the Promised Land that He would be with him and would not leave him nor forsake him. He told him to be of good courage; that no man would be able to stand before him and that as He was with Moses so He would be with Joshua. He went on to say in Joshua 1:7-9:
“Only be strong and very courageous, that you may observe to do according to all the law which Moses My servant commanded you; do not turn from it to the right hand or to the left, that you may prosper wherever you go. “This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success. “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.”
Notice that He instructed Joshua to meditate in the Word; that’s what the Book of the Law was at that time. He told him to not let it depart from his mouth, but to meditate in it day and night, and be sure to observe all that is written in it. In other words, don’t just read it, but DO it! In the book of Romans it is recorded that our faith grows through hearing the Word; or in other words, faith arises within us through meditating on the Word of God.
Romans 10:17 So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.
Faith comes as we hear and do the word of God. Faith grows within our spirits through meditating on the Word! To meditate in the Hebrew means “to reflect; to moan; to mutter; to ponder; to meditate or contemplate something as one repeats the words. The Hebrew word for meditate, hagah, represents something quite unlike the English “meditation”, which may be a mental exercise only. In Hebrew thought, to meditate upon the Scriptures is to quietly repeat them in a soft, droning sound, while utterly abandoning outside distractions. To meditate on the Word of God for faith to arise in your heart is to speak the Scriptures over and over again until they take root in your spirit and become life to you! When God’s word as the solution to your problem becomes bigger within you than the problem is on the outside of you, then you will have faith to overcome because God is your Source!
1 John 5:4 For whatever is born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith.
Just being born again does not mean that you overcome the world. The potential is there but it is not automatic. The victory comes as you exercise your faith to overcome! Thank God, He has well equipped each one of us for the victory, but will we do what is necessary to send fear fleeing and win the good fight of faith?
Father, I thank You for being my Source. I know that You have well equipped me to be a faith-walker and a conqueror through my faith in You and Your presence within me! Thank You, Father, for giving each one of us the measure of faith that we need to develop our ability to win over the effects of this present age. Father, I lift up to You those who may be struggling in their faith walk today. I ask You to show them who they are in Christ Jesus and the great power that You have made available to them through Your Spirit within them. I pray that they will be encouraged in knowing that You are their Source and there is nothing that the evil one can throw against them that can conquer or defeat them when they lean on and trust in You as their refuge and defender. Thank You for granting them the victory through Christ Jesus their Lord! In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.