BLESSED IS THE MAN THAT TRUSTETH IN HIM
By John C. Carpenter
David, the psalmist, wrote, I will bless the LORD at all times:
his praise shall continually be in my mouth. My soul shall make her boast in the LORD: the humble shall hear thereof, and be glad.
O magnify the LORD with me, and let us exalt his name together. I sought the LORD, and he heard me, and delivered me from all my fears.
They looked unto him, and were lightened: and their faces were not ashamed. This poor man cried, and the LORD heard him, and saved
him out of all his troubles. The angel of the LORD encampeth round about them that fear him, and delivereth them. O taste and see
that the LORD is good: blessed is the man that trusteth in him. O fear the LORD, ye his saints: for there is no want to them that
fear him (Psalms 34:1-9). What does it mean to trust in the Lord, and what is the fruit of trusting in the Lord?
To start, it
will be helpful if we define five words found in verse 8: taste, see, good, blessed, and trusteth. First, the word taste is translated
from the Hebrew word aam, which means to taste or perceive. Second, the word see is translated from the Hebrew word raah, which means
to see literally or figuratively, to advise self, consider, discern look on, shew, think, or view. Third, the word good is translated
from the Hebrew word ob, which means beautiful, better, bountiful, favour, glad, gracious, kindness, loving, pleasing, prosperity,
sweet, or welfare. Fourth, the word blessed is translated from the Hebrew word esher, which means happiness, how happy, blessed, or
prosper. Fifth, and last, the word trusteth is translated from the Hebrew word chasah, which means to flee for protection, to confide
in, have hope, make refuge, put trust in. When David says, Taste and see that the Lord is good: blessed is the man that trusteth in
Him, He means that we are to perceive, consider, and understand that because the Lord is loving, kind, and gracious, He displays favour
and prosperity towards those He loves, and that the individual who confides in and flees to Him for protection shall be happy and
GOD ASKS, EXPECTS, AND EVEN COMMANDS US TO TRUST HIM
Throughout the scriptures, the believer is taught and encouraged,
even commanded, to trust in God. For example, David exorts the believer to Stand in awe, and sin not: commune with your own heart
upon your bed, and be still. Selah. Offer the sacrifices of righteousness, and put your trust in the LORD. There be many that say,
Who will shew us any good? LORD, lift thou up the light of thy countenance upon us. Thou hast put gladness in my heart, more than
in the time that their corn and their wine increased. I will both lay me down in peace, and sleep: for thou, LORD, only makest me
dwell in safety [Hebrew betach, a place of refuge security, assurance, confidence] (Psalms 4:4-8). The believer in Christ is instructed, O
Israel, trust thou in the LORD: he is their help and their shield. O house of Aaron, trust 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. The LORD hath been mindful of us: he will bless
us; he will bless the house of Israel; he will bless the house of Aaron. He will bless them that fear the LORD, both small and great.The LORD shall increase you more and more, you and your children. Ye are blessed of the LORD which made heaven and earth (Psalms 115:9-15).In showing the value of depending upon God, we are exhorted, I called upon the LORD in distress: the LORD answered me, and set me
in a large place. The LORD is on my side; I will not fear: what can man do unto me? The LORD taketh my part with them that help me:
therefore shall I see my desire upon them that hate me. It is better to trust in the LORD than to put confidence in man. It is better
to trust in the LORD than to put confidence in princes (Psalms 118:5-9). Following God and trusting in Him will always result in increase
and prosperity [in the natural and in the spiritual]: Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the LORD, and depart from evil.
It shall be health to thy navel, and marrow to thy bones. Honour the LORD with thy substance, and with the firstfruits of all thine
increase: So shall thy barns be filled with plenty, and thy presses shall burst out with new wine (Proverbs 3:5-10). Solomon advises,The fear of man bringeth a snare: but whoso putteth his trust in the LORD shall be safe [Hebrew sagab, defended, exalted, made excellent,
be on high, be too strong] (Proverbs 29:25). After being delivered from the hand of Saul, David sang this song of deliverance: ...The
LORD is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer; The God of my rock; in him will I trust: he is my shield, and the horn of my salvation,
my high tower, and my refuge, my saviour; thou savest me from violence. I will call on the LORD, who is worthy to be praised: so shall
I be saved from mine enemies (2 Samuel 22:2-4). In trusting God, we can experience Him as our rock, fortress, deliverer, shield, horn,
high tower, refuge, and saviour. Paul and his fellow disciples suffered to the point of despairing of even life itself. In explaining
their deliverance, Paul wrote the church in Corinth, ...our hope of you is stedfast, knowing, that as ye are partakers of the sufferings,
so shall ye be also of the consolation. For we would not, brethren, have you ignorant of our trouble which came to us in Asia, that
we were pressed out of measure, above strength, insomuch that we despaired even of life: But we had the sentence of death in ourselves,
that we should not trust in ourselves, but in God which raiseth the dead: Who delivered us from so great a death, and doth deliver:
in whom we trust that he will yet deliver us (2 Corinthians 1:7-10).
WHAT WE ARE NOT TO TRUST IN
Clearly, there are many
reasons why we should trust God, but the scriptures also teach us that there are some things we are not to trust in. First, we are
instructed not to trust in Man, for one. Scriptures instruct us, A man that beareth false witness against his neighbour is a maul,
and a sword, and a sharp arrow. Confidence in an unfaithful man in time of trouble is like a broken tooth, and a foot out of joint (Proverbs
25:18-19), while David, the psalmist, exclaimed, Blessed is that man that maketh the LORD his trust, and respecteth not the proud,
nor such as turn aside to lies (Psalms 40:4). Isaiah prophesied a warniing to Israel about trusting in Egypt: Woe to the rebellious
children, saith the LORD, that take counsel, but not of me; and that cover with a covering, but not of my spirit, that they may add
sin to sin: That walk to go down into Egypt, and have not asked at my mouth; to strengthen themselves in the strength of Pharaoh,
and to trust in the shadow of Egypt [and its limitations]! Therefore shall the strength of Pharaoh be your shame, and the trust in
the shadow of Egypt your confusion (Isaiah 30:1-3).
God the Father and the scriptures also teach us that we are not to put our
trust in riches. In his wisdom, Solomon instructs us, He that trusteth in his riches shall fall: but the righteous shall flourish
as a branch (Proverbs 11:28). The psalmist warns us that redemption cannot be purchased with money: They that trust in their wealth,
and boast themselves in the multitude of their riches; None of them can by any means redeem his brother, nor give to God a ransom
for him (Psalms 49:6-7), and Paul wrote Timothy, Charge them that are rich in this world, that they be not highminded, nor trust in
uncertain riches, but in the living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy; That they do good, that they be rich in good works,
ready to distribute, willing to communicate; Laying up in store for themselves a good foundation against the time to come, that they
may lay hold on eternal life (1 Timothy 6:17-19).
We are also admonished to not trust in false gods or idols. Again, David wrote,Into thine hand I commit my spirit: thou hast redeemed me, O LORD God of truth. I have hated them that regard lying [vain, deceptive] vanities [empty,
transitory, unsatisfying]: but I trust in the LORD (Psalms 31:5-6). Isaiah concludes, They shall be turned back, they shall be greatly
ashamed, that trust in graven images, that say to the molten images, Ye are our gods (Isaiah 42:17). Scriptures also instruct us to
not trust in lies or the liar. David wrote, Blessed that man that maketh the LORD his trust, and respecteth not the proud, nor such
as turn aside to lies (Psalms 40:4). Jeremiah also prophesied against trusting in falsehood: This is thy lot, the portion of thy measures
from me, saith the LORD; because thou hast forgotten me, and trusted in falsehood (Jeremiah 13:25).
Next, we are not to trust
in beauty. Scriptures remind us, Thus wast thou decked with gold and silver; and thy raiment was of fine linen, and silk, and broidered
work; thou didst eat fine flour, and honey, and oil: and thou wast exceeding beautiful, and thou didst prosper into a kingdom. And
thy renown went forth among the heathen for thy beauty: for it was perfect through my comeliness, which I had put upon thee, saith
the Lord GOD. But thou didst trust in thine own beauty, and playedst the harlot because of thy renown, and pouredst out thy fornications on
every one that passed by; his it was (Ezekiel 16:13-15). Trusting in obtaining our own will through military strength is dangerous.
Hosea teaches, Ye have plowed wickedness, ye have reaped iniquity; ye have eaten the fruit of lies: because thou didst trust in thy
way, in the multitude of thy mighty men. Therefore shall a tumult arise among thy people, and all thy fortresses shall be spoiled,
as Shalman spoiled Betharbel in the day of battle: the mother was dashed in pieces upon her children (Hosea 10:13-14). In our last
example, proverbs cautions us against trusting in our own feelings and intellect: He that trusteth in his own heart [feelings, will,
and intellect] is a fool: but whoso walketh wisely, he shall be delivered (Proverbs 28:26).
WHY WE CAN TRUST GOD
the believer in God and Christ is taught to trust in God, but we should ask, why? What are some of the reaons why we can and should
trust God? The scriptures answer that question as well; according to the scriptures, there are numerous reasons to trust in God, but
in order to make the point, we shall mention just a few.
First of all, God is our creator and created everything that we experience.
In the book of Genesis, we read, In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth (Genesis 1:1), while the author of Hebrews
wrote, Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of
things which do appear (Hebrews 11:3). Because He is our Creator, we can and should trust Him. Preaching from Mars Hill, the apostle
Paul adds, God that made the world and all things therein, seeing that he is Lord of heaven and earth, dwelleth not in temples made
with hands (Acts 17:24). Two, we are taught that God is omnipresent, omnipotent, and omniscient, and no one can question His will
or resist Him: Behold, he taketh away, who can hinder [cause to turn or change] him? who will say unto him, What doest thou? (Job
9:12). Daniel adds, all the inhabitants of the earth are reputed as nothing: and he doeth according to his will in the army of heaven,
and among the inhabitants of the earth: and none can stay his hand, or say unto him, What doest thou? (Daniel 4:35). Three, we should
trust in God because He has made, according to His own will, all believers to be the praise of His glory. Paul wrote the church in
Ephesus, Wherein he hath abounded toward us in all wisdom and prudence; Having made known unto us the mystery of his will, according
to his good pleasure which he hath purposed in himself: That in the dispensation of the fulness of times he might gather together
in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven, and which are on earth; even in him: In whom also we have obtained an inheritance,
being predestinated according to the purpose of him who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will: That we should be to
the praise of his glory, who first trusted in Christ (Ephesians 1:8-12). Four, God can be trusted because no being can surpass God
the Father in skill, reason, understanding, power, or plans: There is no wisdom [skill, wisdom, wit] nor understanding [discretion,
reason, skilfulness, understanding, wisdom] nor counsel [to offer advice or a plan] against the LORD (Proverbs 21:30).
God can be trusted because God the Father is love and charity, and it is He who loved us first. The apostle John reminds us, He that
loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love [Greek, agape, affection, benevolence, charity]. In this was manifested the love of God
toward us, because that God sent his only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him. Herein is love, not that we
loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins (1 John 4:8-10). Six, God can be trusted because
He is perfect. The unknow author of Matthew wrote, But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them
that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you; That ye may be the children of your Father which is
in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust. For if ye love
them which love you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans the same? And if ye salute your brethren only, what do ye more
than others? do not even the publicans so? Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect [Greek, teleios,
to be complete in labor, growth, mental and moral character, of full age] (Matthew 5:44-48). Seven, God the Father can be trusted
because, out of His goodness, He knew what we would need, and provided for those needs. Paul wrote, Who [God] in times past suffered
all nations to walk in their own ways. Nevertheless he left not himself without witness [evidence], in that he did good, and gave
us rain from heaven, and fruitful seasons, filling our hearts with food and gladness (Acts 14:16-17). The apostle Paul echoed this
idea when he wrote, ...my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus (Philippians 4:19).
we can trust God because God the Father, because of His love, has made believers to be united with the Father and His Son Jesus Christ,
and has glorified the believer as God glorified His Son Jesus Christ. We are taught, And the glory which thou gavest me I have given
them; that they may be one, even as we are one: I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect [complete, mature] in one;
and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me (John 17:22-23). Nine, the believer
can trust God because God is Holy, and His glory fills the whole earth. As the prophet Isaiah prophesied, In the year that king Uzziah
died I saw also the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up, and his train filled the temple. Above it stood the seraphims:
each one had six wings; with twain he covered his face, and with twain he covered his feet, and with twain he did fly. And one cried
unto another, and said, Holy, holy, holy, is the LORD of hosts: the whole earth is full of his glory [numerous, rich, honorable, splendor]
(Isaiah 6:1-3). Ten, the believer can trust God because because He is for us, He is on our side, and will freely give us all things.Paul wrote the believers in Rome, What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us? He that spared
not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he [God] not with him [Christ] also freely give us all things? Who shall
lay any thing to the charge of God's elect? It is God that justifieth. Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather,
that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us (Romans 8:31-34).
can be trusted because He can supply all your need: But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ
Jesus (Philippians 4:19). Twelve, God can be trusted because He is our source of strength and salvation: Behold, God is my salvation;
I will trust, and not be afraid: for the LORD JEHOVAH is my strength and my song; he also is become my salvation. Therefore with joy
shall ye draw water out of the wells of salvation. And in that day shall ye say, Praise the LORD, call upon his name, declare his
doings among the people, make mention that his name is exalted. Sing unto the LORD; for he hath done excellent things: this is known
in all the earth. Cry out and shout, thou inhabitant of Zion: for great is the Holy One of Israel in the midst of thee (Isaiah 12:2-6).
Thirteen, God can be trusted because He is limitless in all ways. No limits can be placed on God the Father. The scriptures teach
us that With God all things are possible (Mat 19:26), Nothing is too hard for You (Jeremiah 32:17), the Lord's hand is not shortened,
that it cannot save; nor His ear heavy, that it cannot hear (Isa 59:1).
Fourteen, We can also trust God because He says, For
I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end (Jeremiah
29:11). God is not out to hurt us, and has an expected outcome for our life. Fifteen, we can and should trust God because it is He
that is working in us, causing us to both desire, as well as do, His will which pleases Him. Paul wrote the church in Philippi, Wherefore,
my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with
fear and trembling. For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure (Philippians 2:12-13).
we can trust God because He always does what He says He will do, He always keeps His promises. God is not a man, that he should
lie; neither the son of man, that he should repent: hath he said, and shall he not do it? or hath he spoken, and shall he not make
it good? (Numbers 23:19). Paul instructs us that all the promises of God in him are yea, and in him Amen, unto the glory of God by
us (2 Corinthians 1:20), while Peter instructs us that The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness...(2 Peter 3:9). Regarding Israel, Joshua reminds us There failed not ought of any good thing which the LORD had spoken unto the house
of Israel; all came to pass (Joshua 21:45).
Last of all, God is the one and only true and living God who we can put our trust
in. Mark wrote, ...for there is one God; and there is none other but he (Mark 12:32), and Paul instructed the church in Corinth, But
to us there is but one God, the Father, of whom are all things, and we in him; and one Lord Jesus Christ, by whom are all things,
and we by him (1 Corinthians 8:6). The psalmist adds, Put not your trust in princes, nor in the son of man, in whom there is no help.
His breath goeth forth, he returneth to his earth; in that very day his thoughts perish. Happy is he that hath the God of Jacob for
his help, whose hope is in the LORD his God (Psalms 146:3-5).
THE FRUIT OF TRUSTING GOD
No doubt God can be trusted, and
we should place our trust in Him, but when we do trust God, what are some of the outcomes or benefits of our trust? What are the fruits
of trusting God?
One fruit of trusting God is, of course, peace of mind. Isaiah also prophesied, Thou wilt keep him in perfect
peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee. Trust ye in the LORD for ever: for in the LORD JEHOVAH is everlasting
strength (Isaiah 26:3-4). Trusting in God also relieves our fear, because He is with us. Again, Isaiah wrote, Fear thou not; for I
am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right
hand of my righteousness (Isaiah 41:10). Because God is with us when we trust Him, we should not be afraid nor dismayed. Joshua prophesied
God's words, Have not I commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the LORD thy
God is with thee whithersoever thou goest (Joshua 1:9). Our own safety is another benefit of trusting God: The fear of man bringeth
a snare: but whoso putteth his trust in the LORD shall be safe [Herew, sagab, to make lofty, inaccessible, or strong, defend, exalt,
make excellent, or set on high]. Many seek the ruler's favour; but every man's judgment [verdict and justice] cometh from the LORD (Proverbs
29:25-26). David teaches that, for those who seek and trust God, the Lord promises that He will be our refuge and never forsake us:The LORD also will be a refuge for the oppressed, a refuge in times of trouble. And they that know thy name will put their trust in
thee: for thou, LORD, hast not forsaken them that seek thee (Psalms 9:9-10).
David also teaches us that when we trust in God,
He will help us, resulting in a joyful heart: The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusted in him, and I am helped: therefore
my heart greatly rejoiceth; and with my song will I praise him. The LORD is their strength, and he is the saving strength of his anointed.
Save thy people, and bless thine inheritance: feed them also, and lift them up for ever (Psalms 28:7-9). Another benefit or fruit
of trusting in the Lord is that His mercy will surround us: Many sorrows shall be to the wicked: but he that trusteth in the LORD,
mercy shall compass him about. Be glad in the LORD, and rejoice, ye righteous: and shout for joy, all ye that are upright in heart (Psalms
32:10-11). David also teaches us that we are to Trust in the LORD, and do good; so shalt thou dwell in the land, and verily thou shalt
be fed. Delight thyself also in the LORD; and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart. Commit thy way unto the LORD; trust also
in him; and he shall bring it to pass. And he shall bring forth thy righteousness as the light, and thy judgment as the noonday (Psalms
Another major reason to trust in God is that we can obtain His guidance. The psalmist exhorts us, Cause me to hear thy
lovingkindness in the morning; for in thee do I trust: cause me to know the way wherein I should walk; for I lift up my soul unto
thee (Psalms 143:8). Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge
him, and he shall direct thy paths (Proverbs 3:5-6). Those who trust in God can also expect that all things that happen to us happen
to us for our good, according to the will of God: And we know that all things work together for good to them that love [and trust]God, to them who are the called according to his purpose (Romans 8:28). When we trust God, we will not fear, and especially not fear
what man can do unto us. The psalmist reminds us, Mine enemies would daily swallow me up: for they be many that fight against me,
O thou most High. What time I am afraid, I will trust in thee. In God I will praise his word, in God I have put my trust; I will not
fear what flesh can do unto me (Psalms 56:2-4).
When we trust in God, neither shall we fear evil: He shall not be afraid of evil
tidings: his heart is fixed, trusting in the LORD (Psalms 112:7). God also becomes our salvation, glory, and refuge when we trust
in Him: In God is my salvation and my glory: the rock of my strength, and my refuge, is in God. Trust in him at all times; ye people,
pour out your heart before him: God is a refuge for us. Selah (Psalms 62:7-8). The psalmist, David also teaches us to Trust in the
LORD, and do good; so shalt thou dwell in the land, and verily thou shalt be fed. Delight thyself also in the LORD; and he shall give
thee the desires of thine heart (Psalms 37:3-4).
The last, but certainly not the least, fruit of trusting God is the salvation
of our souls that He freely gives us. Isaiah prophesied, Behold, God is my salvation; I will trust, and not be afraid: for the LORD
JEHOVAH is my strength and my song; he also is become my salvation. Therefore with joy shall ye draw water out of the wells of salvation (Isaiah
12:2-3). Paul wrote the believers in Rome, For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness.
Now to him that worketh [at keeping the law for righteousness and salvation] is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt. But
to him that worketh not [at keeping the law to earn salvation], but believeth on [or trusts] him that justifieth the ungodly, his
faith is counted for righteousness (Romans 4:3-5). As David reminds us, The LORD is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer; my
God, my strength, in whom I will trust; my buckler, and the horn of my salvation, and my high tower (Psalms 18:2).
Jeremiah provides the proper perspective between our trust in God and His response when he prophesies, For I [God] will surely deliver
thee, and thou shalt not fall by the sword, but thy life shall be for a prey [booty, spoil, reward] unto thee: because thou hast put
thy trust in me, saith the LORD (Jeremiah 39:18). AMEN.