Monday, March 5, 2018

Whom Do You Trust? God or Man?

Thus says the Lord: “Cursed is the man who trusts in man and makes flesh his strength, whose heart turns away from the Lord. 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. Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord, whose trust is the Lord. 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” (Jeremiah 17:5-8 ESV).

Again, we read words of faith from King Asa saying: “Then Asa called to the LORD his God and said, "LORD, there is no one besides You to help in the battle between the powerful and those who have no strength; so help us, O LORD our God, for we trust in You, and in Your name have come against this multitude. O LORD, You are our God; let not man prevail against You" (2 Chronicles 14:11 NASB).


Brethren, this teaching that the Lord gave us to share with you this week has been well proclaimed by distinguished men and women of God. We will not take a different approach; we will, however, share with you how God delivered us from dependence on man. The Lord revealed to me that there are truly God-fearing and obedient people following His teachings on this website. He further said, many are impatient concerning His coming and that we should just pray, study His word for fruit bearing and witness. In addition, the Lord said many people despise these basic teachings which are aimed to build and foster a relationship with Him. When I asked the Lord in prayer why some people only focus on the visions He gives us on this website, He said it’s because they think they have nothing to learn from the teachings, but there is always room in each person to learn about Him. Furthermore, we shared with you in the past what the Lord said: that any message from Him, whether through us or others, should be appreciated and it is given for the benefit of mankind in obedience to Him. Let me hasten to clarify that I am not preaching dependence on man’s teaching; like the Lord, I strongly encourage Bible reading.

Anyhow, today’s message is intended to put your focus on God. The man of God Nehemiah acted on his faith in God when he decided to approach King Artaxerxes to grant him permission to go rebuild the walls of Jerusalem (Nehemiah 1; 2). He prayed, knowing that the God of his fathers is forever faithful, and after prayer God granted his request. Without going into much detail, every request Nehemiah asked of the King was given. He went to Judah and work began and even against strong opposition they completed their work (Nehemiah 2; 6).

Likewise, the apostle Paul, when he was attacked and challenged by the Jewish authorities (Acts 21:27-40), did not forsake his faith and run to the brethren for help. He trusted in God and defended the message God gave him to deliver. The Lord promised to be with him (Acts 18:9-10). These examples and many others are proof to show that God is faithful and trustable in ALL circumstances.

Faith and Obedience Are Key to God’s Deliverance

I am going to turn to some personal experiences I and others had with the Lord. The years 2007 and 2009 were the most challenging times of my life. In a nutshell, I was unemployed in both these years and naturally, when we are unemployed, our dependence shifts to men. I praise the Lord that I went through this unpleasant experience. It was bitter in every respect and frustration briefly separated me from my family. During this time, all doors seemed to have been locked for me. I tried everything including the Lord. As I briefly allude in a previous article, Prayer is the Key to Solving All Problems – Part I, we stood on the verge of losing our house, I attended a Bible school course and because I could not pay, the pastor had me work at his church painting and cleaning, and my compensation was used to pay my tuition. Brethren, I don’t mean this with evil motives; I simply want to highlight how serious my problem was. Before the pastor decided to give me chores at his church, I came to Bible school as usual and just before the evening’s lecture, the pastor handed out text books to the rest of the class and I was skipped. Almost immediately, everybody looked at me. They knew I was not employed and had no income to pay for my tuition. I sat motionless not knowing where to hide myself. I felt rejected and I quipped under my breath, “Lord, is this really happening?” During all this time the pastor avoided eye contact with me. After sitting through the lecture for a few minutes, I could not contain myself, so I took my bag and left.

When I got home my wife asked why I was early, so I related my experience to her. She was stunned and added this experience to our existing sorrows. Later that night, my wife advised that we pray and ask the Lord for help because she knew I really wanted to complete my Bible school training. The following day I contacted the pastor asking him if I could at least take the semester exams, which were due in a week’s time. I praise the Lord; this midnight prayer worked on the pastor and he called me and suggested I do some work to compensate for my studies. If we did not pray and trust in the Lord, the humiliating experience I had would have kept me back, but God sent me right back, and I humbled myself and went.

In a separate situation, my pastor who knew I was unemployed, promised to speak to someone she knew and who could arrange for me to get a job. I took her word and I started trusting God for a job through the promise she gave me. I am still waiting; this promise never materialised until I realized I trusted in the pastor’s promise, and not on God. When we don’t have faith, it is easy to trust in people more than God. In the Bible school incident, and prior to us praying, I trusted on the pastor’s compassion of which he didn’t have, until we prayed and the Lord moved him (Proverbs 29:25). Glory to the Lord Jesus Christ!

In yet another situation, we turned to many other people for help including our parents; they all deserted us. Not only did we struggle to put food before our children, but we lived in fear of losing our house at any time. The greatest fear that tormented me was not just losing our house, but losing my family. Brethren, if we trust in people God cannot help us; these experiences resulted in some bitter feuds with my wife. As it is, since I had nowhere to go and no one to turn to for help. I went into my room and I called upon my God in bitterness of spirit. I cried, “Lord, if You are there, then only you can help me!” I sought the Lord earnestly in prayer and this even led me to take Charis, who was only nine (9) years old at the time, as a prayer partner. This experience is very sacred to us and it makes me emotional; for many nights we prayed and read the scriptures, making God our only hope for survival until the Lord’s surprise visit to us on January 25, 2010. Although, this did not mean now our problems disappeared; we still lived in want. The Lord wanted us to trust in Him and as our focus turned from trusting in human compassion, He taught us to trust in Him. Gradually, we learned and prayed trusting Him personally for all our needs. We don’t have earthly riches, nor do we desire it. We are rich in Christ and He supplies all our daily basic needs; this is our simple trust in God.

In conclusion, do you trust in people using your faith in men? Or do you only have faith in a religion, but not in God? If you trust in religion, then you are trusting in man and are dependent on man. If this is the case, you will be controlled by man. This is disobedience folks; the above scriptures warn us not to trust in the arm of flesh, but in the Lord (Jeremiah 17:5-8). I am not suggesting we should not ask for help when there is a need; habitual help is dependence on man. I need to clarify another point here; the Lord told us that He assigned people in the body to provide for the needs of His children as a right from Him. These He assigned to the work of the “altar”, so they must live from the fruit of their ministry and service to Him and man (1 Corinthians 9:11-14). This is by no means dependence on man; it is God’s command.

Finally, our salvation should not depend on people, a ministry or some priest; if we have surrendered to all these in disobedience to the written word of God and the Holy Spirit, then we becomes slaves of man. The truly God-trusting person will first listen and follow God’s counsel more than what man says (Acts 5:29).

Holy Regards,

Brother Glenn.

PS: We are sharing a new vision the Lord has given us for this week.