Weekly Bible Study
Wait on the Lord
June 19, 2013
We wait in hope for the LORD; he is our help and our shield. Psalm 33:20
At first, his faith was growing quickly as he joined Bible studies, prayed regularly, read the Bible and listened to the Bible on CD. He seemed to grow quickly and shared his new-found faith at every opportunity. His life had truly changed for the better. He knew that God was with him, guiding him along his path in this world. At first.
And then, he wasn’t certain how it began, it was about two, maybe three years into his walk with the Lord—his trust in the Lord began to weaken. In the beginning, he could honestly say that he trusted God, no matter what happened. But now? Where was God now? There were major issues in his life that he’d given to God to sort out. Some of them were transformed but what about the rest?
Quietly his faith began to diminish. His enthusiastic, “Praise the Lord, God has it covered. It’s in His hands” turned into lip service rather than faith. Where, he wondered to himself, was God now? What he did not admit, even to himself, was how his time with God had diminished. In a few short years he was no longer praying regularly, reading the Bible, or listening to God’s Word on CD’s. His faith had weakened and he was losing hope. Instead of waiting on the Lord, he was beginning to blame God and himself.
(Psalm 27:14) Wait for the LORD; be strong and take heart and wait for the LORD.
(Psalm 40:1) I waited patiently for the LORD; he turned to me and heard my cry.
(Psalm 38:15) LORD, I wait for you; you will answer, Lord my God.
What our friend did not realize was that his peace and comfort with the world was drawing him away from his peace and comfort with his Lord. He had allowed himself to ignore God’s warning in James 4:4 You adulterers! Don’t you realize that friendship with the world makes you an enemy of God? I say it again: If you want to be a friend of the world, you make yourself an enemy of God.
Strong words! Scary and intimidating too, some would say. A man once said that warnings from God can be looked at as warnings from a caring parent to their child. For example, “If you touch this part of the stove you will burn your hand.” God deserves our utmost effort at following Him so He can reveal his plans as a loving Father. And a loving father disciplines his children.
(1 John 2:15-17) Do not love this world nor the things it offers you, for when you love the world, you do not have the love of the Father in you. 16 For the world offers only a craving for physical pleasure, a craving for everything we see, and pride in our achievements and possessions. These are not from the Father, but are from this world. 17 And this world is fading away, along with everything that people crave. But anyone who does what pleases God will live forever.
If our sense of well-being, peace, safety and hope relies on this world and its things, then we shall never experience them. God alone can give a peace that passes all understanding, and freely He did. Not only that, He promises that he will guard our hearts and minds in Christ Jesus (See Philippians 4:6-7). Who else could give us peace and guard our hearts and minds in His powerful name? Now if we do not follow His instructions, and do not spend time with Him, and perhaps secretly do not believe that He will do what He says, we hinder Him.
(Galatians 1:4) In order to set us free from this present evil age, Christ gave himself for our sins, in obedience to the will of our God and Father.
(Romans 12:1-2) So then, my friends, because of God’s great mercy to us I appeal to you: Offer yourselves as a living sacrifice to God, dedicated to his service and pleasing to him. This is the true worship that you should offer.2 Do not conform yourselves to the standards of this world, but let God transform you inwardly by a complete change of your mind. Then you will be able to know the will of God—what is good and is pleasing to him and is perfect.
(John 14:27) “I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid.”
(John 16:33) I have told you this so that you will have peace by being united to me. The world will make you suffer. But be brave! I have defeated the world!
(1 Corinthians 16:13) Be alert, stand firm in the faith, be brave, be strong.
(Ephesians 6:10-11) A final word: Be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11 Put on all of God’s armor so that you will be able to stand firm against all strategies of the devil.
Any time we look for answers in the world, we find discouragement or worse, sin. God has provided everything we need for our lives in this world and for eternity. As long as we live here, we have to look only to Him for direction and answers.
How often do we read the Bible? How often do we pray? God never said he would make our lives easy or profitable or successful (as the world defines it). He did say he would save our souls through Jesus’ sacrificial death, fill us with His Holy Spirit to guide us in this life, and give us eternal life with Him. What more could He do?
To wait on the Lord does not mean doing nothing. It means doing everything as you depend on Him for direction and wisdom. What should I do becomes, “I will do this, trusting in God to guide me.”