Summary: This sermon is based on Proverbs 3:5-6 and emphasises the peace that comes from trusting the Lord rather than the new cultural spiritual fads that tingle ears.
In Jesus Holy Name
Text: Proverbs 3:5-6
“Total Trust=Peace of Mind and Heart”
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart
lean not on your own understanding
in all your ways acknowledge him
and he will make your paths straight.” Proverbs 3:5-6
What a great passage to describe the life and faith of _________________. To love and trust God with all your heart simply means that your life, your heart, your center of being is filled with devotion to God that flows in compassion to others.
_________ did not lean on his own understanding nor did he buy into all the new cultural spiritual fads that float over the air waves to bring peace to his heart. He never wavered from God’s promise of forgiveness and eternal life offered by faith in Jesus.
In our liturgy for today we spoke the words of Jesus as recorded by the apostle John: “Jesus said, do not let your hearts be troubled.” In other words, “don’t worry about your eternal destiny…” Trust in God, trust also in me. “don’t lean on your own understanding.” In my Father’s house are many rooms; if it were not so I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you. I will come back and take you to be with me so that you may be where I am.”
From the day of his baptism __________ was “adopted into the family of God.” God created and sustained him through life. One of his favorite psalms read: “I sought the Lord and he answered me. He delivered me from all my fears.” _______ had no fear of death. He knew his eternal destiny was heaven, without a doubt.
The post modern culture in which we now live wants people to depend on their own efforts, their own knowledge to find spiritual peace and please God. _______ knew better. Religions created by human beings do not offer peace for the human soul. ______ did not lean on human ideas nor new ear tingling suggestions about life beyond the grave. He read God’s word. He trusted the promises of Jesus. His commitment to the teachings of Jesus showed in his life long ethical behavior and his weekly commitment to worship.
He loved coming to our weekly Thursday Bible Study. Together we studied the N.T. Gospels, the letters of Paul and the book of Revelation. I know that Bernie attended some of those studies when she was in town.
In our studies of Revelation we were able to hear the words and promise of Jesus. “Blessed are those who wash their robes (in the blood of the Lamb) (holding the cross of Jesus before their eyes) for they have the right to the tree of life and may enter the eternal city and drink of the water of life flowing from the throne of God and the Lamb..”
It has been a long week for the family. They stood at their father’s side. Oxygen equipment was there to extend life. Words of comfort, tender words and helping hands brought comfort. This was the same experience of Mary and Martha when their brother Lazarus was desperately ill. They sent for Jesus. They knew that Jesus had the power to conquer human illness. They asked him to come.
Like the family today they remained at the bedside of the one they loved. They held hands through the days and nights. When Jesus arrived at the home of Mary and Martha, we hear their words of despair. “Oh, if you had been here…” Their brother was gone. It is one of the most painful moments in life.
Jesus had a more powerful message for Mary and Martha and for us. Jesus went to the grave of Lazarus, prays to God, and then calls Lazarus from death back to life. “Lazarus… come forth.” And he did. The words of Jesus to Mary and Martha still echo across the centuries. Jesus said, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies.”
Only the God of creation could dare to stand at the canyon’s edge of death and offer hope and eternal life. Jesus offered his sinless life on the cross so that we might be restored to peace and harmony with God. Three days later he rose from the grave to guarantee our eternal home in heaven.
When Jesus died on the cross almost 2000 years ago God chose to place all of our sins, the sins of every believer upon Jesus, and transfer all of his holiness, his righteousness to the believer.
How? That is like asking: How does my body transfer the microscopic molecules of oxygen, along with vital nutrients, to every tiny cell in my body. Then those tiny red blood cells carry the carbon dioxide back to my lungs to be released with every breath. I don’t think about the scientific process with every beat of my heart. I just live and accept the transference as fact. So also with God. Bill did not lean on his own understanding of God’s act of “justification” at the cross. He just accepted the fact of God’s love and forgiveness and lived his life.