By Lewis Willis
It was Job who said, “Man that is born of a woman is of few days, and full of trouble” (Job 14:1). Many men would attest to the truthfulness of that statement. Often our troubles come upon us so quickly and unceasingly that we cannot even discern their source. All we know is that we are “full of trouble.”
If we had only an occasional time of difficulty, most would handle the situation with deliberation. However, it is when the troubles overwhelm us that we become weary and distressed. There is a need to cry for help but, frequently, men do not know where to turn for aid and comfort.
Christian, this brings us to one of our greatest blessings in the Lord. Perhaps we sometimes overlook it, but it is there that we can find special providence in time of need. As is always true of providence, it is difficult to identify the workings of God. I have never been terribly concerned about identifying what God has done he takes care of that. I am interested in affirming that he has promised his help to his people who are serving him. One of the great messages of the Scriptures is that God helps and delivers those Who trust in him (Psa. 37:40).
Permit me to focus our attention on the promise of God’s help which is found in a single Bible book, the book of Psalms. The Scriptures speak for themselves. After we note these, we will make an application.
Man Cannot Help
Be not far from me; for trouble is near; for there is none to help (Psa.22:11).
Give us help from trouble: for vain is the help of man (Psa. 60:11;108:12).
Put not your trust in princes, nor in the son of man, in whom there is no help (Psa. 146:3).
Unless the Lord had been my help, my soul had almost dwelt in silence (Psa. 94:17).
I find it interesting and important that David affirms that man can neither deliver himself, nor find deliverance in other men. In that last passage quoted above (Psa. 94:17) he said without the Lord, his soul was dead. Man must learn not to trust in men, even noble men (Psa. 146:3).
God Can And Will Help
And the Lord shall help them, and deliver them: he shall deliver them from the wicked, and save them, because they trust in him (Psa. 37:40).
Why art thou cast down, 0 my soul? and why art thou disquieted in me? Hope thou in God:for I shall yet praise him for the help of his countenance (Psa. 42:5).
Help In Time of Trouble .. .
God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble (Psa. 46:1).
But I am poor and needy: make haste unto me, 0 God: thou art my help and my deliverer; 0 Lord, make no tarrying (Psa. 70:5).
O God, be not far from me: 0 my God, make haste for my help (Psa. 71:12).
O Israel, trust thou in the Lord: he is their help and their shield… Ye that fear the Lord, trust in the Lord: he is their help and their shield (Psa. 115:9, 11).
Let thine hand help me; for I have chosen thy precepts (Psa. 119:173).
I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help. My help cometh from the Lord, which made heaven and earth (Psa. 121:1-2).
Happy is he that hath the God of Jacob for his help, whose hope is in the Lord his God (Psa.146:5).
Let me see if I can summarize what David has said about the help God gives to his people. He said God, which made heaven and earth, is our hope. He is present to help when we are in trouble. He will deliver us. This deliverance is contingent upon us trusting in him and choosing to live by his precepts or commandments. The man who does this is happy or blessed.
From The New Testament
The same message that God will help his people is found in the gospel. Consider: “Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee. So that we may boldly say, The Lord is my helper, and I will not fear what man shall do unto me” (Heb. 13:5-6). “Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world” (Matt. 28:20). “Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God … I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me” (Phil. 4:6, 13). “Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time: Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you” (1 Pet. 5:6-7).
The message is undeniable. God is available to help his people in their times of trouble if they will trust in him and do his will.
All that has been said is valuable to the Christian only if he will apply it in his life. We cannot afford the luxury of forgetting or ignoring what God has promised us. Certainly, no one is justified in blaming God for his troubles, when he has failed to apply this truth in his life. God is not the author of bad things, but of good. James said, “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning” (Jas. 1:17). It is the Devil who is the source of our problems, not God. Peter said, “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour” (1 Pet. 5:8). We must be careful that we not falsely charge God with our troubles. He is not the cause of the troubles he is the help and deliverance from them.
I was just thinking, if all of these things are true, and they are, why do many Christians, in time of trouble, drift away from God instead of toward him? It is one of the sad facts of our time that we frequently will not turn for help to the only true and reliable source of help the Lord God. Perhaps these thoughts will help us by way of reminder.
Guardian of Truth XXXVIII: 11, p. 3-4
June 2, 1994