“In God We Trust” is printed right on our money, yet do we trust Him or the money itself? Most of us would exclaim that we trust God, but in reality trust in others, circumstances, or ourselves. We trust that the money we’ve paid into Social Security will be there to fund our retirement; we insist that we do certain jobs because “if you want something done right, you have to do it yourself; and Grandma always believed this, so it’s good enough to get me into heaven.
If we truly examine our motives, we might be surprised what we truly trust in!
I. Judges 12:1-7. A gentle word is supposed to turn away wrath (Proverbs 15:1), but Jephthah learned with first the Ammonites and then the Ephraimites that that doesn’t always work. He had tried to put his trust in his fellow Israelites to save him from a foreign invader, and they didn’t like him putting his trust in God when they refused his request. You may experience friends’ or relatives’ pressure for you to follow their advice or examples, but often their ways run counter to God’s Word. Adam and Eve experienced this in Genesis 3:1-6. As a Christian, we must always follow God’s way.
II. 1 Samuel 13:8-12. We can misplace our trust by putting it in others, circumstances, or ourselves. When Samuel was later than he said he would arrive and King Saul was watching his army grumble and disperse, he justified in his own mind that offering the sacrifice, a job only for the Levites, was okay for him to do. God ripped the kingdom away from him because of his disobedience. Sin is not trusting in a good God to follow His perfect plan in His perfect way in His perfect timing for you. Worry is trusting only in ourselves (Matthew 6:25-33) as is having little faith (Matthew 14:28-31).
III. Psalm 20:4-7. A Christian will firmly place his trust in God, knowing that His ways and thoughts are so much higher than ours (Isaiah 55:8) and that God never forsakes those who put their trust in Him (Psalm 9:10). Indeed, for that which is most important–salvation–Jesus Himself tells us to put our trust in Him (John 14:1-3).
We might examine ourselves in light of Scripture and ask if we are placing our trust in God and He is just using the people and circumstances around us as tools for His plan or if we are trusting in those people, circumstances–even ourselves–to save us.