Bible verses about
Trusting in God
(From Forerunner Commentary)
These verses do not say we should not follow a man; they say we should not put our trust in men despite their high status in society or government. No matter how much power or influence they can exert on our behalf in this world, they are not to be trusted as we trust in God.
John W. Ritenbaugh
'I'll Never Follow Another Man!'
God continues His response to the prophet with a stunning rebuke, one which contains more than a veiled threat.
This translation masks the moment—the import—of God's words. He is warning Jeremiah that he must return, that is, repent, abandoning “this mistaken tone of distrust and despair,” as The Amplified Bible glosses verse 19. God promises He will restore him as His prophet, the “mouth” of God, only if he comes to understand the difference between the precious way of God and that vile way of the wicked.
The Living Bible better conveys the import of God's comments to Jeremiah with this paraphrase of verse 19:
Stop this foolishness and talk some sense! Only if you return to trusting me will I let you continue as my spokesman.
The Message handles the same passage this way:
Take back those words, and I'll take you back.
Then you'll stand tall before me.
Use words truly and well. Don't stoop to cheap whining.
Then, but only then, you'll speak for me.
The Good News Translation presents this paraphrase:
If you return, I will take you back, and you will be my servant again. If instead of talking nonsense you proclaim a worthwhile message, you will be my prophet again.
It is clear that God is not mincing His words. In this time of crisis for Judah, God demands a servant in whom He can have confidence, one who will fearlessly warn in the face of persecution and who will remain committed to carrying out His work to its conclusion—no matter where that work may take him. God needs an individual of resolute and indefatigable faith.
Actually, God is telling Jeremiah that his office of prophet is on the line. He absolutely must overcome his doubts of God's fidelity. He must not fall back into the ways of the people of Judah. He can only continue to be separate from them by believing God.
A Tale of Two Complaints (Part Two)
God is stating what is later reiterated in Jeremiah 23. There is individual responsibility, and we have to face up to the fact that there is no hiding from God. He does not intend this in a mean way—not at all. He is not trying to make us feel as though we need to be looking over our shoulder all the time for His club to come down on us. That is not what He is looking for.
He is looking for us to get the good out of life. His reasons are honorable, loving, kind, and good. He is trying to help us to understand that cause and effect are at work. We need to consider: Do we really trust God?
John W. Ritenbaugh
The Sin of Self-Deception
Jesus asks the man to do what had seemed impossible a moment before. At His command, the man places himself in full view of the synagogue's audience so that everyone present can witness it, and without even touching him, Jesus immediately heals him. When the man stretches out his hand for all to see, the crowd witnesses positive proof of Christ's power and holiness.
Despite the shame of his withered hand, the man still attends Sabbath services at the synagogue. He places a higher priority on worshipping God than on his personal discomfort. The principle illustrated here is that people should not use physical problems as an excuse for not going to church. A person should attend services when able.
The downside of missing services is that, eventually, spiritual problems with far more serious consequences will develop. No one can do much in service to God if he allows physical problems or handicaps to impede his worship and service of his Creator. In a sense, many of us suffer from withered hands. Sin so paralyzes us that we cannot serve God as we would like. Yet, anyone in God's church can be empowered to do the needed things for our Healer.
The real issue is faith. Jesus fulfills God's intention for the Sabbath day by restoring this man to health and strength. In answering Christ's call to step forward, the man shows what a little faith and obedience can do. This tests his courage and faith as he rises above his human fears. He entirely trusts Christ, and his healing is God's response.
Martin G. Collins
The Miracles of Jesus Christ: Healing a Withered Hand (Part Two)
Jesus ends verse 7 with the phrase "though He bears long with them." This seems to imply that God bears long with His people's cries for help. But this is not the sense. The pronoun "them" refers, not to God's elect, but to their oppressors, whom God endures far longer than we do. The Jamieson, Fausset, and Brown Commentary states: "[T]he meaning is, that although He tolerates these oppressions for a long time, He will at length interpose in behalf of His own elect."
Then, Jesus states emphatically in verse 8, "I tell you that He will avenge them speedily"! "Speedily" is probably another poor choice of words; it is better rendered "suddenly" or "unexpectedly." When God's tolerance of these oppressors has run its course, He will promptly act at the right time—"out of the blue," as it were—to deliver His people.
Then at the end of verse 8 comes the question that pertains to each one of us now, today. Jesus asks it at the conclusion of the Parable of the Persistent Widow, a parable promising God's faithfulness: “Nevertheless, when the Son of Man comes, will He really find faith on the earth?”
The implication seems to be that very few will have the strength of faith that Jesus is talking about. As the God of the Old Testament, Jesus, having looked into man's heart from Creation and seeing humanity's trajectory to our day, had every reason to ask if there would be faith at the end time! Even the Jews of His lifetime, full of Messianic fervor, did not have the faith He is seeking! Would even His chosen people—Christians, the followers of Christ—have saving faith?
Do we have this faith? What, then, is the evidence Jesus is looking for that will establish that we have the faith He is looking for? Some might view this "faith" as a powerful individual faith to move mountains or to perform some other great miracle. Yet, what Jesus is looking for are those who completely trust Him as God, and based on that trust, are living by faith according to God's revealed truth despite all of the pulls and pressures from the world.
John O. Reid (1930-2016)
Will Christ Find Faith?
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