Proverbs 3:5-6 reads, “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.”
Brethren, it is our responsibility as God’s own children to walk and live each day by faith, not by sight; for without faith it is impossible for us to please the Lord our God. (2 Corinthians 5:7; Hebrews 11:6) The life that we are now living in this flesh, we are to live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved us and give Himself for us. (Galatians 2:20) Just as we received our Lord Jesus Christ through faith as our eternal Savior, even so we are to walk and abide in Him through steadfastness of faith, being rooted and built in Him thereby. (Colossians 2:6-7) We are to stand and become established in the things of the Lord by faith, and through such steadfastness of faith in Him we shall obtain a good report. (Acts 16:5; 1 Corinthians 16:13; Hebrews 11:39) Although we do not see our Lord with physical sight, yet we are to look unto Him with the sight of faith and thereby to rejoice in Him with joy unspeakable and full of glory. (1 Peter 1:8) Even so, the four lines of Proverbs 3:5-6 present four important truths concerning this matter of walking by faith and trust in our Lord.
We are to set our trust in the Lord entirely.
The opening line of Proverbs 3:5 gives the instruction, “Trust in the LORD with all thine heart.” We are not to be half-hearted in our trust in the Lord. Rather, we are to be whole-hearted in our trust in the Lord. We are not to be of little faith in Him. Rather, we are to be of entire faith in Him. We are not to waver with double-minded uncertainty toward our Lord, “for he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed.” (James 1:6). Rather, we are to be unwavering with full assurance of faith toward our Lord. (Hebrews 10:22) We are not to focus our heart’s attention and meditation upon the troubles that are around us and thereby to stagger through unbelief at the promises of the Lord our God. Rather, we are to focus our heart’s attention and meditation upon our Lord who is with us; and thereby we are to be strong in faith concerning His promised presence, power, provision, and protection. (Romans 4:19-20) Yea, even when our faith is small and wavering, we must set the focus of our heart’s attention and mediation upon our Lord, crying out with humility and confession, “Lord, I believe; help thou mine unbelief.” (Mark 9:24)
We are to set our trust in the Lord entirely, with all our heart, with complete confidence in Him. Certainly, He is worthy of such whole-hearted trust and confidence. Even so, Psalm 5:11-12 declares, “But let all those that put their trust in thee rejoice: let them ever shout for joy, because thou defendest them: let them also that love thy name be joyful in thee. For thou, LORD, wilt bless the righteous; with favour wilt thou compass him as with a shield.” Psalm 9:9-10 declares, “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.” Psalm 18:1-2 declares, “I will love thee, O LORD, my strength. 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.” Psalm 31:19-20 declares, “Oh how great is thy goodness, which thou hast laid up for them that fear thee; which thou hast wrought for them that trust in thee before the sons of men! Thou shalt hide them in the secret of thy presence from the pride of man: thou shalt keep them secretly in a pavilion from the strife of tongues.” Psalm 36:5-9 declares, “Thy mercy, O LORD, is in the heavens; and thy faithfulness reacheth unto the clouds. Thy righteousness is like the great mountains; thy judgments are a great deep: O LORD, Thou preservest man and beast. How excellent is thy lovingkindness, O God! Therefore the children of men put their trust under the shadow of thy wings. They shall be abundantly satisfied with the fatness of thy house; and thou shalt make them drink of the river of thy pleasures. For with thee is the fountain of life: in thy light shall we see light.” Psalm 37:39-40 declares, “But the salvation of the righteous is of the LORD: he is their strength in the time of trouble. And the LORD shall help them, and deliver them: he shall deliver them from the wicked, and save them, because they trust in Him.” Psalm 91:1-4 declares, “He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the LORD, he is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in him will I trust. Surely he shall deliver thee from the snare of the fowler, and from the noisome pestilence. He shall cover thee with his feathers, and under his wings shalt thou trust: his truth shall be thy shield and buckler.” Isaiah 12:2 declares, “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.” Finally, Isaiah 26:3-4 declares, “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.”
We are to set our trust in the Lord exclusively.
The closing portion of Proverbs 3:5 gives the instruction, “And lean not unto thine own understanding.” We are to have no manner of self-confidence whatsoever. We are not to lean in any way, even the smallest bit, upon our own wisdom and ability. Such a trust and confidence in ourselves is actually pride of heart. Thus Proverbs 3:7 instructs us not to be wise in our own eyes, and Romans 12:16 takes it even further by instructing us not to be wise in our own conceits. Yea, Proverbs 28:26 reveals that anyone who sets his trust and confidence in his own heart is a fool. Yet this does not mean that we are to have no confidence at all. We are not to lean upon our own wisdom and ability, but we are to lean upon our Lord’s wisdom and ability. We are not to walk in self-confidence at all, but we are to walk in God-confidence with all our heart. Even so, in 2 Corinthians 3:5 the apostle Paul declared, “Not that we are sufficient of ourselves to think any thing as of ourselves; but our sufficiency is of God.” Yea, Proverbs 3:25-26 declares, “Be not afraid of sudden fear, neither of the desolation of the wicked, when it cometh. For the LORD shall be thy confidence, and shall keep thy foot from being taken.” Yet again Proverbs 14:25-26 declares, “In the fear of the LORD is strong confidence: and his children shall have a place of refuge. The fear of the LORD is a fountain of life, to depart from the snares of death.” And yet again Joshua 1:9 declares, “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.”
We are to set our trust in the Lord exactly.
The opening portion of Proverbs 3:6 gives the instruction, “In all thy ways acknowledge him.” Here and in the latter half of the verse, the two words “ways” and “paths” are plural. In the plural these words refer, not to the entire pathway of our lives, but to the individual steps of our lives, the individual decisions and directions that we make along the pathway of our lives. Thus we are to acknowledge our Lord in every step, in every decision and direction, that we take in our daily living. Yet what does it mean to acknowledge Him? In the first place, it means to acknowledge His existence. We must acknowledge that God actually exists and that He is the God over all His creation. Yet there is more to acknowledging Him in all our ways, for the context of Proverbs 3:5-6 is quite personal. This context is not simply about God’s rule over all, but of His relationship with us. Thus, in the second place, it means to acknowledge His presence. We must acknowledge that He is actually with us wherever we go and that He never leaves us nor forsakes us. (Joshua 1:9; Hebrews 13:5) We must not be afraid or dismayed in each step of our daily walk because we know with full assurance of faith that the Lord our God is with us and will strengthen us, help us, and uphold us with His own hand of righteousness. (Isaiah 41:10)
Yet there is more to acknowledging Him in all our ways. Certainly acknowledging our Lord’s presence in every step fits well with the context of verse 5, wherein we are instructed to trust in Him with all heart. Yet the context of the latter half of verse 6 moves us also to consider His guidance and direction of our paths. Thus, in the third place, it means to acknowledge His lordship. In every step that we take in our daily walk, our Lord is not simply with us to help us along the way; He is also with us to direct us in the way. He is the Lord our God, and we must acknowledge the lordship authority of His will and direction in all our ways. Yea, in all our ways we must yield ourselves as a living sacrifice, as a faithful servant, unto Him. (Romans 12:1) We are to live, not unto ourselves, but unto our Savior and Lord. (2 Corinthians 5:15) Whatever we do, in word or deed, we are to do all under the authority of our Lord for His glory. (1 Corinthians 10:31) Not our will, but His will is to be done. Daily, in all our ways, we are to deny our own will, take up our cross of submission to His will, and to follow after Him in absolute obedience. (Luke 9:23)
We are to set our trust in the Lord expectantly.
The closing portion of Proverbs 3:6 gives the promise, “And he shall direct thy paths.” This is our Lord’s promise to us – If we will trust in Him entirely with all our heart, exclusively and not at all on ourselves, and exactly in complete submission to His will, then He will guide and direct our paths. Then He will guide and direct our ever step in our daily walk. Even so, Psalm 25:8-9 declares, “Good and upright is the LORD: therefore will he teach sinners in the way. The meek will he guide in judgment: and the meek will he teach his way.” Yet again in Psalm 32:8 He declares, “I will instruct thee and teach thee in the way which thou shalt go: I will guide thee with mine eye.” And yet again Isaiah 48:17 declares, “Thus saith the LORD, thy Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel; I am the LORD thy God which teacheth thee to profit, which leadeth thee by the way that thou shouldest go.” He will make His way straight before our face. (Psalm 5:8) He will lead us “in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.” (Psalm 23:3) He will guide us with His counsel. (Psalm 73:24) He will teach us “good judgment and knowledge.” (Psalm 119:66) He will teach us to do His will and will lead us “into the land of uprighteness.” (Psalm 143:10) Every step of our daily walk, He will direct us by His Spirit, saying, “This is the way, walk ye in it.” (Isaiah 30:21) Therefore, with full assurance of faith we must trust that His guidance and direction will indeed be granted unto us.
Posted in Weekly Sermon, Trust in God, Refuge of the Lord, Deliverance of Our Lord, Blessing of the Lord,
Faithfulness of Our Lord, Lovingkindness of the Lord, Spiritual Joy, Spiritual Peace, Self Dependence,
Serving the Lord, Spiritual Guidance