This is the sermon for Sunday morning, September 21st, 2008. I’m also going to post before the sermon a skit that is on youtube. This skit is going to be done live at our church by couple of our members right before the sermon.
WHO DO YOU TRUST?
Before we get into the sermon this morning, let’s watch this short illustration dealing with trust.
The word “Trust” means, “reliance on the integrity, strength, ability, surety, of a person or thing; confidence; confident expectation of something; hope.
This morning, I’d like to ask you a very important question. Who do you trust? After reading to you the definition, this should be a question that all of us need to ask ourselves. If we trust someone, it must be someone of the greatest strength, the purest integrity, and most awesome ability; someone that we can put all of our hopes in.
Unfortunately, looking at trust this way narrows down the list. In fact, it narrows down the list to just one person.
It is my intention that during this sermon you will learn That the only person deserving of our complete trust is Jesus Christ. Another lesson that I want to teach you is when we put our complete trust in Jesus – we receive benefits.
God has many things to say about trust throughout His Word. So this morning, we are going to look at what He has to say about trust as it is found in Jeremiah 17:5-8.
But before we do, let’s invite the Holy Spirit to bless the reading and teaching of the Word and give us insight, correction, and help us to apply the Word’s teachings.
Jeremiah in Chapter 17 is prophesying to Judah. He is not prophesying very good things. He is saying that their sin is before God as someone would take a pen of Iron with the writing point made of diamonds. This is a description that their sins our so vile and deep, that they have left a permanent mark upon the nation, and because of this, God’s anger is kindled against them.
One of their sins that was so vile is they were trusting in the strength of man, other nations, and not in the God who chose them out of other nations. So God gave them two options: Trust in man and be cursed; Trust in God and be blessed.
Even though their sin left a permanent mark and they would be taken into exile because of it, they could still turn to God and He would bless them, even in the midst of exile.
You may ask me, Pastor, what does this have to do with us today?
Well, we still have a decision as believers to make. In all situations, big and small, good and bad, do we trust in man, or do we trust in God? We have to make a decision.
Let’s look at what Jeremiah has to say about the differences of trusting in man and trusting in God.
1. Trusting in man brings a curse.
Jeremiah 17:5-6 ESV – 5 Thus says the LORD:”Cursed is the man who trusts in man and makes flesh his strength, whose heart turns away from the LORD. 6 He is like a shrub in the desert, and shall not see any good come. He shall dwell in the parched places of the wilderness, in an uninhabited salt land.
A. Trusting in man is the easiest choice.
The reason I say this is because we are trusting in what we can see. In either our own abilities, or the abilities of others. The problem is; all humans are lacking in their abilities. We don’t have perfect integrity and strength and we are not always full of hope.
B. According to my reading of verse 5, to trust in man is to turn your heart away from the Lord.
I want you to understand something this morning: this passage was not written to the evil Gentile nations surrounding Judah, but it was written to God’s chosen people – Judah herself. In the same way, I feel we must interpret this passage according to that fact: This passage is written to those who are the called out ones, the saints; the children of God through Jesus Christ. If that is so, then when we put our trust in what we see and on people, we are in essence, turning our back on the God who purchased us and called us out of darkness. Now I’m not saying that it is an intentional turning of our back on Him. Nor am I saying that it is losing our salvation. After all He is the one who saved us. It is not based on our decisions. I’m talking about the constant looking to people, and the philosophies of this world for answers, instead of trusting the Savior of our souls with our entire being.
C. There is a curse that we place ourselves under by trusting in man and not in God.
Again, I’m not talking about a curse of sin, or a curse that loses your salvation, but it is a curse none the less. What is the curse? No deep roots in Christ, and therefore no good growth and the constant living in dry times.
v.6 ESV – He is like a shrub in the desert, and shall not see any good come. He shall dwell in the parched places of the wilderness, in an uninhabited salt land.
D. Now let’s look at the other person that calls for our trust – God Himself.
2. Trusting God brings a blessing.
Jeremiah 17:7-8 ESV – 7 “Blessed is the man who trusts in the LORD, whose trust is the LORD. 8 He is like a tree planted by water, that sends out its roots by the stream, and does not fear when heat comes, for its leaves remain green, and is not anxious in the year of drought, for it does not cease to bear fruit.”
A. Trusting in God is the most difficult choice.
God does not determine how He moves by the difficult times we go through. Neither does He move according to the plans and dictates of man. But He moves according to His integrity, strength, and ability. The difference being God’s integrity, strength and ability is perfect, plus He is the God of all hope.
B. Notice the blessing of trusting in the Lord.
Spiritual growth in Him.
You won’t be like a little shrub out in the wilderness, but like a tree planted by a stream that will continue to bear its fruit.
It can seem so easy to trust people and their ideas and ways, but their solutions are only short term and do not come from the Lord. Do we dare to truly trust in God? Even when others tell us we are wrong?
We can never go wrong trusting in Him. Let’s become known as a church in this community that truly trusts the Lord, and shows others that trusting Him is the best solution for any difficulty.