STRONG FAITH IN A FAITHFUL GOD Part 1 of 2
by John Lowe
Text: "I will cry unto God most high; unto God that performeth all things for me."
DAVID was in the cave of Adullam. He had fled from Saul, his ruthless foe, and had found shelter in the clefts of the rock. In the beginning of this psalm, he rings the alarm-bell. "Be merciful unto me," he says, and then the clapper hits the other side of the bell. "Be merciful unto me." He expresses his misery again and again. "My soul trusteth in thee; yea, in the shadow of thy wings will I make my refuge, until these calamities be overpast." With these words, he comforts himself by faith in his God. For faith to be true faith, it must be an active faith. Its activity, however, must begin with prayer. This should precede any action. "I will cry," he says, "unto God most high."
Do you know that when he was in the cave, he was graciously saved by God, even when Saul was close at his heels? God used the winding caverns to conceal him from Saul and his men, while they were close at hand. There is an ancient legend that contains a note about this, which may or may not be true. It states that a spider spun its web over the door of that part of the cave where David was concealed. If that’s the way it was, David would probably have written about the little things God had done for him which had great results. If God makes a spider spin a web to save his servant's life, David traces his deliverance not to the spider, but to the wonder-working God, and he says, "I will cry unto God most high, unto God that performeth all things for me."
It is wonderful to hear the prayers of these great men of God when they face adversity. It’s the sick oyster that makes the pearl, and not the healthy one. And it’s the Christian in trouble and pain that prays the best prayers.
Our text is capable of three meanings. I want to call your attention briefly to these three meanings. David said, "Unto God who performeth all things for me."
FIRST, he could be thinking about God’s divine intervention.
SECONDLY, there is a possibility he is referring to unbreakable faithfulness. David was confident that God would work out the fulfillment of the promises He had made.
THIRDLY, there is a definite certainty that God is going to work it all out according to the covenant He had made with David.
To begin with, the first meaning of the text concerns:―
I. THE DIVINE INTERVENTION.
The text talks about a service―"I will cry unto God most high; unto God that performeth all things for me." "All things," suggests the idea that in everything that I have to do, I am only an instrument in His hand; it is God that does it for me. The Christian has no right to do anything that he cannot ask for God's help to do it. In effect, he should have no business which he could not leave with the Lord. Any work in which he cannot ask for God’s help, or that he can’t give the care of into God’s hands, is unfit for him to be engaged in. You can depend upon it, if I cannot say about my whole life, "God performeth all things for me," there is sin somewhere.
Let’s think about our day-to-day life, and apply the text to it. Should we ask God every morning to help us through the day? Although we are not going out to preach or going to church for worship, and even though it is only our ordinary business, that ordinary business ought to be a consecrated thing. We ought to find opportunities to serve God in our common and ordinary activities and by our service glorify God.
On the other hand, we may do something to hurt the cause of Christ as we go through an ordinary day. Therefore, let’s begin the day with prayer, and continue all through the day in the spirit of prayer, and at the end of the day thank God for anything that was accomplished. Any success that we have had, if it is real success, is from our God who gives it to us. Doesn’t it say in the Bible, "Except the Lord build the house, they labour in vain that build it?" That is a statement that can be applied to the whole Christian life.
If we are going to be blessed, as Jabez craved when he said, "Oh! that thou wouldst bless me indeed," it must come from God, and it can come from nowhere else. So then, if you’re a Christian, pray continually to God that performeth all things for you.
Could it be that right now, some of you are worried about some petty little thing, or you have spent the whole morning trying to work out some trivial matter? Don’t you think we often suffer more from our little troubles than from our great ones? A thorn in the foot may make you ill-tempered, while a dislocated joint would expose your grit. Often the man who can bear to lose a fortune with the composure of Job, will cringe and seethe due to a trivial annoyance that should only excite a smile or a groan. We are apt to worry about things that never happen, or if they do, don’t amount to much. Is it because we forget that God performeth all things for us?Don’t we ignore the fact that our success in little things depends upon His blessing? Don’t you know that God can make the gnat and the fly a greater trouble to Egypt than a severe storm? So never ignore your little troubles, but instead, give them all to God. Thank God for the little things. Put the little things into His hand, because it is nothing to God to work in the little, for the great is little to Him. After all, there is not much difference in our littles and our greats to the infinite mind of our glorious God. Cast it all on Him who numbers the hairs of your head, and who won’t allow a sparrow to fall to the ground without his decree. Pray to God about the little things, for he performeth all things for us.
I believe that all of us at one time or another has prayed about some great thing like changing jobs. Friends, don’t take a step without waiting upon the Lord, but if you are convinced that the change has God’s approval, go ahead with it, because he performeth all things for you.
There’s too much anxiety around today that causes physical and emotional sickness when we try to deal with our forebodings ourselves. Some of those knots we try to untie could better be cut by the sword of faith. We should put an end to our difficulties by leaving them with the Lord. Hasn’t He been your guide up until this moment? Then follow Him like the Israelites followed the cloudy pillar through the wilderness. Follow Him confident that all is well and keep close to Him, for He performeth all things for you.
Just now, perhaps, you are surrounded with real trouble and grief. I want to encourage you to pray to God when you have hard times; He will show himself once again to be a God who is all-sufficient to his people in their times of need. He is always near. I do not believe that He has said, "When thou walkest through the green pastures, I will be with thee, and when thy way lies close by the river of the water of life, where lilies bloom, I will strengthen thee." I believe he will do it, but I do not remember such a promise in His Word; but "When thou goest through the rivers, I will be with thee," is a well-known promise of His.
If He is ever present with you, it will be when you are hurting: if he can be absent, it will certainly not be when his servants most want His aid. You rest in Him then. But you say, "I can do so little because of this problem I have." Do what you can, but leave the rest to Him. If you can see no way of escape, does that mean that there is none? If you can’t see any help, is it to be inferred that help cannot come? Thy Lord and Savior couldn’t find a single friend among the whole family of man, "Yet," said he, "could I not presently pray to my Father, and he would send me twelve legions of angels?" If it was needed for your help, the squadrons of heaven would leave the glory-land to come to your rescue, even if you may be the least and poorest of the children of God. He’ll do it for you, so be obedient, trustful, and patient.
It is your place to obey, it’s His to command; it’s yours to see, it’s his to perform. He will perform all things for you.
It is always unwise to anticipate our troubles. Didn’t God say, "Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof?" Of all the ways a person can torture himself, the most foolish is to import future trouble into the present. Instead of worrying about what might happen, think of some gracious promises you found in the Word, and lay hold of them with faith. Then, whatever you perceive is going to happen in the future, will be in God’s hands. He rules and He overrules: he will make all things work together for good; he will surely bring you through. Goodness and mercy shall follow you all the days of your life, and you shall dwell in the house of the Lord forever. He is the one who will perform all things for you.
It seems strange to me that you see your weaknesses, you see the temptations that will attack you, and the troubles that threaten you, and you are afraid. Don’t look at these things and don’t think about them.
This is no business of yours. Leave it in His hands, for He will manage it all very well, and He will do the kindest and the best thing for you; so be confident and rest in peace. And it should be the same even at life's close. He performeth all things for me.