“Trust in the Lord with all your heart
and lean not on your own understanding;
in all your ways submit to him,
and he will make your paths straight.
Do not be wise in your own eyes;
fear the Lord and shun evil.
This will bring health to your body
and nourishment to your bones.”
Commands (suggestions) and a promise. Outline takes that form
(Command # 1)
Trust in the Lord with all your heart…
“Teach me your way, Lord,
that I may rely on your faithfulness;
give me an undivided heart,
that I may fear your name.”
When we ask for an undivided heart, God will test us
and we will be given opportunities to choose between God and everything else.
Remember the story of Abraham taking his promised son, Isaac to the alter.
(slide) By faith Abraham, when God tested him, offered Isaac as a sacrifice. He who had embraced the promises was about to sacrifice his one and only son, even though God had said to him, “It is through Isaac that your offspring will be reckoned.” Abraham reasoned that God could even raise the dead, and so in a manner of speaking he did receive Isaac back from death. Hebrews 11:17-19
Abraham TRUSTED GOD WITH ALL HIS HEART (and with the outcome).
Application: Do you trust God with your Isaac?
Example: Annso and i
“If you love something, let it go. If it comes back to you, it’s yours forever. If it doesn’t, then it was never yours in the first place.” -unknown
Let me encourage you a little: She came back!
Review: Trust in the Lord with all your heart.
(Command # 2)
…and lean not on your own understanding
Relying exclusively on MY OWN INSIGHT can stand in the way of…
Leaning on my understanding is the opposite of living by faith.
(slide) “Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.” (Hebrews 11:1)
Remember what happened in the garden of Eden.
The snake got Eve to try and think it through on her own,
to question the reasoning behind the word of the Lord.
“Did God really say, ‘You must not eat from any tree in the garden’?”
2 The woman said to the serpent, “We may eat fruit from the trees in the garden, 3 but God did say, ‘You must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden, and you must not touch it, or you will die.’”You will not certainly die,” the serpent said to the woman. “For God knows that when you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”
When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom, she took some and ate it. She also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it. Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they realized they were naked; so they sewed fig leaves together and made coverings for themselves. Genesis 3:1-7
Is knowing evil really desirable? “Don’t you want to experience things first hand?”
Example: “Not even once” at Kealakehe High School.
Understanding is not essential for spiritual success
(Blind faith is more valuable than worldly wisdom)
- That’s why Jesus had the child stand among them and said,
(slide) “Truly I tell you, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.” Mark 10:15
Review: And lean not on your own understanding…
(Command # 3)
…in all your ways submit to him,
Example: Physical Training.
What’s more important, knowing exactly how, physiologically, the training works or just doing exactly what the trainer says?
Understanding is not a requirement for success.
(Promise) - he will make your paths straight.
I will lead the blind by ways they have not known,
along unfamiliar paths I will guide them;
I will turn the darkness into light before them
and make the rough places smooth.
These are the things I will do;
I will not forsake them.
If you do those 3 things, you don’t have to ask which way to go anymore!
(Command # 1)
Do not be wise in your own eyes;
The biggest enemy to mature Christians. (Pride)
To some who were confident of their own righteousness and looked down on everyone else, Jesus told this parable: “Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. The Pharisee stood by himself and prayed: ‘God, I thank you that I am not like other people—robbers, evildoers, adulterers—or even like this tax collector. I fast twice a week and give a tenth of all I get.’
But the tax collector stood at a distance. He would not even look up to heaven, but beat his breast and said, ‘God, have mercy on me, a sinner.’
“I tell you that this man, rather than the other, went home justified before God. For all those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.” Luke 18:9-14
Do not be wise in your own eyes.
“Just when we are most anxious to have our heart the temple of God, we shall find the two men coming up to pray. And the publican (tax collector) will find that his danger is not from the Pharisee beside him, who despises him, but the Pharisee within who commends and exalts. In God's temple, when we think we are in the holiest of all, in the presence of His holiness, let us beware of pride.
"Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan came also among them." (Job 1:6)
- Murray, Andrew
Isaiah, was a highly righteous prophet and what was his response to God?
“Woe to me!” I cried. “I am ruined! For I am a man of unclean lips, and I live among a people of unclean lips, and my eyes have seen the King, the Lord Almighty.” Isaiah 6:5
Review: Do not be wise in your own eyes…
…fear the Lord and shun evil.
Shun - persistently avoid, ignore, or reject
Remember Joseph and Potiphar’s wife…
He was in charge of the house and once she took a liking to him, she asked him over and over to sleep with her…
But he refused. “With me in charge,” he told her, “my master does not concern himself with anything in the house; everything he owns he has entrusted to my care. No one is greater in this house than I am. My master has withheld nothing from me except you, because you are his wife.
How then could I do such a wicked thing and sin against God?” And though she spoke to Joseph day after day, he refused to go to bed with her or even be with her. Genesis 39:8-10
Did you know that avoiding evil sometimes means rejecting a person.
(Promise) This will bring health to your body
and nourishment to your bones.
“When I kept silent,
my bones wasted away
through my groaning all day long.
For day and night
your hand was heavy on me;
my strength was sapped
as in the heat of summer.
Then I acknowledged my sin to you
and did not cover up my iniquity…
Rejoice in the Lord and be glad, you righteous;
sing, all you who are upright in heart!”
Psalm 32:3-5, 11
Command/Promise Summary slide
Do you meditate on the promises of God?
Bridgeman school verse when I was asking God for an answer.
Do I believe the promises of God?
“The Lord gave them rest on every side, just as he had sworn to their ancestors. Not one of their enemies withstood them; the Lord gave all their enemies into their hands. Not one of all the Lord’s good promises to Israel failed; every one was fulfilled.” Joshua 21:44-45
What’s the first thing that happens when you get up in the morning?
What’s the first thing you do when you get bad news?
Who is establishing your thoughts?
Is it think, then pray or is it pray then think?
I hope you are contending with God for things.
Don’t miss out!
As a pastor, I’m prescribing,
(slide) like a doctor, medicine to a sick patient.
If you struggle to find the right path, read this verse over in the amplified version of the Bible (2 times daily) once in the morning and once at night right before bed, in faith, with a little humility, and obedience to what it says to do, and over time, God will make your path straight.
“Trust in and rely confidently on the Lord with all your heart
And do not rely on your own insight or understanding.
In all your ways know and acknowledge and recognize Him,
And He will make your paths straight and smooth
[removing obstacles that block your way].
Do not be wise in your own eyes;
Fear the Lord [with reverent awe and obedience] and turn [entirely] away from evil.
It will be health to your body [your marrow, your nerves, your sinews, your muscles—all your inner parts]
And refreshment (physical well-being) to your bones.”
It’s a promise of God. Believe it! and Live!