Our beloved God through His beloved psalmist, our beloved brother, demonstrates for us the proper attitude we are called by God to adopt when we experience assorted difficulties which seem to come out of nowhere.
25 My soul clings to the dust; Revive me according to Your word. 26 I have declared my ways, and You answered me; Teach me Your statutes. 27 Make me understand the way of Your precepts; So shall I meditate on Your wonderful works. 28 My soul melts from heaviness; Strengthen me according to Your word. 29 Remove from me the way of lying; and grant me Your law graciously. 30 I have chosen the way of truth; Your judgments have I laid before me. 31 I cling to Your testimonies; O LORD, do not put me to shame! 32 I will run the course of Your commandments, For You shall enlarge my heart. 33 Teach me, O LORD, the way of Your statutes; And I shall keep it to the end. 34 Give me understanding, and I shall keep Your law; Indeed, I shall observe it with my whole heart. 35 Make me walk in the path of Your commandments, For I delight in it. 36 Incline my heart to Your testimonies, and not to covetousness. 37 Turn away my eyes from looking at worthless things; And revive me in Your way. 38 Establish Your word to Your servant, Who is devoted to fearing You. 39 Turn away my reproach which I dread, for Your judgments are good. 40 Behold, I long for Your precepts; Revive me in Your righteousness. Psalms 119:25-40
Those who are God’s children through repentant faith in Jesus Christ will exhibit this attitude while they are suffering from unexplained trials and tribulations. This portion of Psalm 119 is echoed in the New Testament in 1 Peter chapter one.
3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His abundant mercy has begotten us again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 4 to an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled and that does not fade away, reserved in heaven for you, 5 who are kept by the power of God through faith for salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. 6 In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials, 7 that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ, 8 whom having not seen you love. Though now you do not see Him, yet believing, you rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory, 9 receiving the end of your faith—the salvation of your souls. 1 Peter 1:3-9
What I am going to say brings me no joy, but instead sorrow. However, it serves as a warning to God’s dearly beloved children. When we struggle may we be drawn to Christ and to His Word for our edification and comfort. Let us not embrace the bosom of a foreign god by going to the consolations of fallen man. This will only result in betrayal of the truth and being led astray.
This has been, unfortunately, illustrated for our warning and learning in the life of Kent Hovind. He was jailed for nine years on charges of defrauding the government of tax revenue. Dr. Hovind, according to his own testimony, didn’t submit to this as the hand of God, didn’t repent and humble himself, and did not find refuge in Christ and His Word. He read works of false believers, at least one for sure, William Paul Young, during his imprisonment according to his own testimony and has been led astray, calling a blasphemous book a work that came from God (?!!). How can that be? God is never the Author of anything that is anti-biblical and anti-christ. He referenced The Shack in this statement, and so has proven that he is an untrustworthy witness for Christ, His gospel and His kingdom. Let us all be warned and always only forever trust our Savior and His glorious Word whenever we encounter trials, persecutions and difficulties.
16 Yet if anyone suffers as a Christian, let him not be ashamed, but let him glorify God in this matter. 17 For the time has come for judgment to begin at the house of God; and if it begins with us first, what will be the end of those who do not obey the gospel of God? 18 Now “If the righteous one is scarcely saved, Where will the ungodly and the sinner appear?” 19 Therefore let those who suffer according to the will of God commit their souls to Him in doing good, as to a faithful Creator. 2 Peter 4:16-19
Lord Jesus Christ may we be faithful to You in hard times and times of seeming blessing. May our faith in You be founded upon Your Word alone, and not on the word of any man, however so beguiling. Amen, Lord Jesus may it be so!