Trust in God, Productive of Happiness
by William Nicholson, 1862
"Whoever trusts in the Lord, happy is he." Proverbs 16:20
"Godliness is profitable for all things." The most intelligent have given their verdict in favor of religion. And though some may see it through a false medium, or be so enchanted by the pleasures of sense as for a time to forget it — yet in the hour of solemn and deliberate thought, they agree with Solomon, "Whoever trusts in the Lord, happy is he."
The holy fruits of religion,
its substantial pleasures,
its power to preserve from evil,
its supporting influence in times of calamity,
and its glorious effects on futurity —
must endear it to every sober and intelligent mind.
I. The Important Principle to Be Exercised."Trust."
"Trust" signifies dependence, reliance, confidence. Trust, in the Old Testament, and faith in the New, are synonymous. Ephesians 1:12, 13.
Trust implies —
1. A deep sense of our sinfulness and helplessness, and a knowledge of Christ the Mediator. The man who trusts in God is savingly illuminated on these subjects.
2. A knowledge of God's gracious character, as the object of trust. "Those who know Your name will put their trust in You!" Psalm 9:10
To safely trust in any man — we must have an approving knowledge of his character.
The infinite love of God;
the rich provisions of his grace;
the pleasure he takes in the prosperity of his servants, etc.
— warrant the soul to trust him.
Trust in God is opposed to self-confidence, to trust in the law, moral duties, etc. This would be like a man treading on soft yielding ground, incapable of supporting the feet, etc. The man who trusts in God through Christ, places his soul on a firm and immovable Rock! Isaiah 28:16; Hebrews 13:8.
3. A constant reliance upon God for all temporal and spiritual blessings . . .
for food, clothing, and other necessities,
for pardon of sins,
for acceptance with God,
for peace with God,
for the fulfillment of his promises,
for the keeping of the soul, and its salvation, against that day.
He who trusts God, expects and waits for the manifestation of his love.
II. Its Gracious Influence."Happy is he."
1. He has the favorable testimony of God. Hebrews 11:5, 6, etc.
2. He enjoys the infinite blessings of salvation. He is saved, delivered from the wrath to come, "kept by the power of God." 1 Peter 1:5.
3. Trust ennobles, elevates, and dignifies him, making him more excellent than his neighbor. It sanctifies and makes him holy.
4. Trust cheers and supports him in the darkest season. It did Abraham, Hebrews 11:8, 9, and Job, who said, "Though he slays me — yet will I trust in him."
"Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines, though the olive crop fails and the fields produce no food, though there are no sheep in the pen and no cattle in the stalls, yet I will rejoice in the LORD, I will be joyful in God my Savior!" Habakkuk 3:17-18
5. By faith, he conquers his enemies. The world, 1 John 5:4, 5; Satan, Ephesians 6:16, etc. etc.
6. Trust is productive of the hope of Heaven. Hebrews 11:1.
Trust produces joy.
Trust calms the mind. "You will keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on you." Isaiah 26:3. The idea is taken from an army besieged; the place is impregnable; the munitions of war are abundant; the stores of provision are sufficiently ample. The attack against it may be terrible and furious, but the soldiers of the garrison are at peace, calm, collected, and confident, knowing where their strength lies.
7. Lastly. Trust conquers death. 1 Corinthians 15:55-57.