TEXT: Psalm 62:5-8: “My soul, wait thou only upon God; for my expectation is from him. He only is my rock and my salvation: he is my defence; I shall not be moved. 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.”
We have found, not only from the experiences of others, but also from our own experiences that God will indeed allow us to experience trouble, but He will sustain us through the trouble that we face. As we continue our series on Pilgrim’s Progress According to the Bible, we are looking at three ways that God sustains His children through times of trouble.
On last week, we saw that God sustains us by providing for our every need. The psalmist says, “My soul, wait thou only upon God; for my expectation is from him.” The psalmist tells us that in the midst of his time of trouble, he will not be complaining about his circumstances. He will not be trying to make things happen in his own strength. Rather, he will sit quietly and sit still and wait on God. The psalmist is confident that God will provide for his every need. We see this played out in the experience of Christian as he travels up the Hill of Difficulty. When he grows tired, God, who knows the needs of His children, provides a Pleasant Arbor for Christian so that he can sit down and rest awhile. Philippians 4:19 tells us, “God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.”
Today, we want to look at how God sustains us by reminding us of the benefits of salvation. The psalmist goes on to say, “In God is my salvation and my glory: the rock of my strength, and my refuge, is in God.” As we face various troubles in our lives, we will often be tempted to give up on the Christian faith. We will be tempted to go down another path. The devil wants us to throw up our hands and give up on following Jesus Christ.
It is at these times when we need to be reminded of the benefits of the salvation that we have through Jesus Christ. The psalmist reminds himself that “in God” he finds salvation, and we ought to do the same. As Christian is sitting in the Pleasant Arbor resting from his troubles, he takes out a scroll that was given to him at the Cross. While he reads the scroll, he is reminded of his burden of sin and how Jesus Christ delivered him from it. He is reminded, also, of the place to where he is going — the Celestial City.
Sometimes, when we are in the midst of our troubles, we ought to take a moment to look back on what God has delivered us from, and look forward to our God-ordained destination. The devil will pull all kinds of tricks to get us to doubt our salvation and the faithfulness of God. He will tell us, ‘If God loved you, you wouldn’t be going through this trouble right now.’ Or he will say, ‘The Christian life isn’t supposed to have all of these problems.’ That is what the devil would do to us if we let him.
In such times, we too have a scroll that we can pull out and read. It is the word of God, and it is the means by which we are reassured of our salvation and reminded of God’s promises to never leave us or forsake us. Not only is the Word of God to be used as a means of encouragement, but it is also to be used as a weapon against the enemy. The Bible calls the Word of God the “sword of the spirit.” Just as Jesus Christ did when Satan tempted him, we are to use the Word of God against the enemy when the going gets tough and he comes alongside us to whisper words of doubt and discouragement in our ear.
In times of trouble, God sustains us by providing His Word for us to be reminded of the benefits of salvation. What are some of these benefits?
1. We are saved from eternal punishment in Hell. Romans 5:9 says, “Being now justified by his [Jesus'] blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him.”
2. Our salvation is eternally secure and it can never be taken away. Jesus Christ said in John 10:28-29, “And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand.”
3. The Holy Spirit lives inside of us and we get guidance from Him. Jesus Christ said in John 14:16, “And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever…”
4. We have the privilege of praying to God and He promises to hear and answer our prayers. First John 5:14-15 says, “And this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us: And if we know that he hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of him.”
5. We have peace that passeth all understanding through Jesus Christ. Philippians 4:7 says, “And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.”
6. We have joy unspeakable through Jesus Christ. First Peter 1:8 says, “Whom having not seen, ye love; in whom, though now ye see him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory.”
7. Like Christian, we know that we will go to the Celestial City — Heaven — when we reach the end of our journey. Jesus Christ said in John 14:2, “In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.”
As we close, I encourage you to stay in the Word during your time of trouble so that you will be reminded of the benefits of our salvation, as expressed in the words of this hymn, “So Great Salvation”:
“So great a salvation,” ye saints of the Lord,
To us is revealed in His marvelous Word!
Since all that He is and has done is for us,
We’ll give earnest heed to this word glorious.
He’s washed all our sins, purified them fore’er;
Tasted death on the cross, ended slavery there.
He took on our nature, the devil has slain,
And put you and I in His glorious train.
“So great a salvation” is given to us
That we may be made like our Lord glorious!
By all that He is and by all He has done
We’re brought into glory with God’s firstborn Son.
MUSICAL SELECTION: “Shout to the Lord” by Hillsong” and “Our God is an Awesome God” by Rich Mullins