TRUST IN THE LORD.
"Trust ye in the Lord forever." Isaiah, 25: 4.
My text this evening is just one short word—five letters in it— "Trust." Five letters with five heads: Trust, whom to trust, when to trust, how to trust, and then who will trust him, and the result of trusting. Now, I have not come to-day to preach a sermon as much as 1 have to tell you how you can be saved. I see a good many here who have been in the inquiry-rooms during the past week, and have gone away with their heads down, sad and weary, carrying the burden, not leaving it all with Jesus. Now, God helping me, I want to make the way so plain that you can all be saved this evening.
Whom to trust! In that portion of scripture I have just read, we are told whom not to trust. We are told not to trust in the arm of flesh. "Cursed be the man that maketh the arm of flesh his trust," and Isaiah, in the 26th chapter, 3d and 4th verses, tell us whom to trust: "Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on thee, because he trusted .in thee. Trust ye in the Lord forever, for in the Lord Jehovah is everlasting strength." Now, you cannot find any one who has put his whole trust in God but he has perfect peace. His soul is at rest. It is not tossed about upon every wave of doctrine, but it is at rest; because it is utterly impossible for anybody to put entire trust in God, and not have perfect peace. That is the reward to those who do so. If we put our trust in our own strength, it will fail us. If we put our trust in our money, some thieves may get it away, fires may burn it up, it may take to itself wings. If we put our trust in friends, they will die and leave us. If we trust in anything on earth, we will be disappointed; but if we
Sit our trust in God, he never dies. He never breaks a promise. e is everlasting strength. All human strength fails. All earthly streams get dry sometimes; but God never fails. The Keeper of Israel never slumbers, never sleeps. Therefore if our trust is in him, and we look to him wholly and entirely for everything, why we will have peace and joy. Then, in the 62d Psalm, which was read here by Dr. Hall, one day this week, 10th verse, we find these words: "My soul, wait thou only upon God, for my expectation is from him." The trouble is, we wait upon every one else but God. We are running to this one and that one, but don't wait on him. "He only is my rock and my salvation. He is my defense, I shall not be moved. In God is my salvation and my glory; the rock of mv strength and refuge is God."
Now, here is a verse I want to call your attention to, and that is the second head—When to trust. "Trust in him at all times." There are a good many that will trust in God when they are in no trouble and don't apparently need to trust; but to trust in God when they are in great trouble and difficulty is what they do not do. "W0 do not leave it all with him, and rest assured that everything works together for good to them that love God. That is something they know very little about. Here and there, there is one willing to trust God when they cannot see how it is coming out. That is what the psalmist calls our attention to. Trust him at all times—not a part of the time, but at all times. If we don't trust him, of course we don't have peace and joy; but if we trust him at all times, the Lord never leaves us. Whoever heard of one's being left in a time of trouble when their trust was in God, and all their expectation was from him? "Trust him at all times, ye people; pour out your heart before him." God is a refuge for us.
But I can imagine some one saying: "I don't know what it is to trust. I have been waiting for that trust. I have been praying for it." I met a woman in the inquiry-room, the other night, who told me she had been praying thirty years, I think, for faith; that she might just trust God. Now, that is not a miraculous trust at all. It is the same kind of trust we have in one another. Don't you know that all business in this city would be suspended within forty-eight hours, if the business men didn't trust one another? Let the business community once lose its confidence, and see how quick business is paralyzed. Why, there would be a rush on every bank in New York, if the people hadn't confidence. That is what Paul meant when he said: "I am persuaded he is able to keep that I have
committed to him." I trust God to keep my soul; and so we just commit our soul to f»od and trust him, and rest right there. Certainly, when any one of you are sick, you trust the doctor. If not, yon would not have him come to see you. If you thought he was going to poison you. you could not be hired to take his medicine. Now, what you want is, to trust the great physician of your soul. Trust Christ; he never lost a case yet. Trust him; he will keep you and not let you die: If this great temple we live in dissolves, we have a building death cannot touch, eternal in the heavens; and we save that building lust by trust. If you have a case in court and don't know anything about law, you have unbounded confidence in your lawyer; and you leave the case in his hands and trust him to take care of your interests. And so you have got a bad case, an awful bad case; and the best thing yon can do now is to commit it to the great Advoo»te, Jesus Christ. He will take care of your case tnd bring yow «rot of all your trouble, if you only put your trust in him.
I can imaeire some of you saying, " I will try." How many times I have heard that—"I will try and trust him." Now, that ia nothing but downright insult. It ia just saying, "I won't trust you." If after my making a statement to you, you should say to me, "Mr. Moody, 1 will try and believe you," I would think it an insult. It is an insult to talk that way to the Lord. What reason have you for not believing him? Have you any reason under heaven for not taking God at his word and believing on him, that you might have everlasting life? How is it when you take man at his word? He makes promises often that he cannot keep, and which he did not intend to keep when he made them. If you can take man at his word —and you do trust him—why can you not take God at his word?
There has been a man in the inquiry-room, during the last month, with whom I talked a great deal. Night after night I talked with him. He lives in a part of the city where I am staying, and night after night I have walked up with him, and talked with him. The other meiit ffointr with him there was another friend, and after he
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will believe him as I would anybody else;" and that is what trust is—taking God at his word. Hasn't he promised to receive every one as he came? If I die, I will die trusting. If I perish, I will perish trusting. No one ever perished that way yet. Just to show you what unbelief is, in the 5th chapter of John, 9th verse: "If we receive the witness of men, the witness of God is greater; for this is the witness of God, which he hath testified of his Son. He that believeth in the Son of God hath the witness in himself. He that be
lieveth not God hath made him a liar, because he believeth not the record that God gave of his Son. And this is the record that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. He that hath the Son hath life, and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life. Now, if any one came here and told me he saw a man go out and stand in the street, I would believe what he said. I would take his testimony. If any one or two of these men here should go into court and testify, it would be established in any court. Now, he says here, if you take the testimony of men, is not the testimony of God greater? "He that believeth on the Son of God hath the witness in himself." "He that believeth not God hath made him a liar, because he believeth not the record that God gave of his Son." Now, when you say you will "try" and trust him, it means you won't believe him. It means you won't trust him; that you won't take him at his word.
Now, how to trust him. That is a very important question. In the 3d of Proverbs, 1st verse, we find these words: "My son, forget not my law, but let thy heart keep my commandments." Don't give the devil a little corner in your heart. Don't let the world have any part of your heart. Trust him with all your heart. That is how to trust him. "Trust in the Lord with all thine heart, and lean not to thine own understanding." "Why? Because the heart is chief among all things, and you cannot trust your own understanding. "In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy path," You know what it is to trust any one with all your heart. You have got friends, and many of you wives and husbands, that you trust with all your heart. You have mothers, in whom you place the most implicit reliance. You never have any suspicion coming up in your heart against them. You never think of doubting them. You take them at their word; you believe what they say, with all your heart. Now why should you not trust God with all your heart? Why should you believe the devil's lies about God? Why say you will try and trust him, when you have no reason to doubt trusting him? There is a story told of Alexander the Great. He received a note from some one stating that his favorite doctor was going to poison him, and the doctor was with Alexander when the note came; and just then he was giving the emperor the medicine, for he was sick. As Alexander took the cup of medicine he held up the letter, read it off to the doctor, and swallowed the medicine. That was to show the doctor that he had confidence in him, that he did not believe what was in the letter. Some one was trying to injure the doctor, to get him put to death; but the emperor had such confidence in his doctor that ne just took the medicine, and didn't believe a word of it. That is what I call believing with all your heart. Now there might have been poison in that cup; but do you think there is any poison in God's cup? He offers you the cup of salvation. Do you think it u poison and death to any one that will take that cup? Do you think any one can perish that will trust God for salvation?
There is a story told of old Dr. Chalmers, who went to see a Scotch woman in her time of trouble about her sin. In the North of Scotland they spend a good deal of thought in just looking at themselves, and occupying themselves with their misgivings. This Scotch woman was trying to get faith. She hadn't the right kind of faith, and the doctor was going to see her. On his way he had to cross a stream over which there was nothing but a thin plank, and he thought it looked rotten and insecure; and he went up and pat his foot upon the plank doubtingly, and feared to trust his weight upon it. And the Scotch woman, watching him from the window, saw that he was afraid to venture out on the plank, and she came out and shouted, "Just trust the plank, doctor." And the doctor did trust the plank, and walked over the stream in safety. Afterwards he was talking with the woman, and she hadn't the right kind of faith, she said, and was lamenting over her lot; and the doctor, in his means to explain to her what was the trust she ought to have, at last hit upon the circumstance of his crossing the plank, and using the woman's queer Scotch expression, said to her, "Trust Christ, cannot you?" "Oh, doctor, is that faith?" said she. "la it just to trust him?" "That is faith," said he; "just to trust him, as I trusted that plank. It carried me over; and you trust God, and he will carry you over." "Oh," said she, "I can do that." That means trust the plank. Just trust it; and it won't break under you.
"Though he slay me I will trust him," in spite of the devil and all his lies. You cannot perish if you do. No man or woman ever perished that put their whole trust in him. Who will trust him? I will tell you who will; those that know him. Those who are under the power of the devil and believe in the devil's lies, won't trust him. Suppose some one were to tell you a lot of lies about me, you would not trust me, then, of course. If you believe the devil's lies about God, that God is not a God of mercy, and of love, and of truth, you won't trust in God, of course. When the devil went to Eden, the first thing he did was to begin to doubt. He said to Adam: "Did God say that? He knows very well it is not true. He knows that when you eat that fruit you become ecjual with God." We get into die pit just where Adam and Eve got in, unless we put our faith and confidence in God, and believe in him and trust him unreservedly. Scripture tells us who will trust him. "And they that know thy name will have trust in thee, and the Lord will not forsake them. A man that knows God will trust him. The people who are running away from God are strangers to him, and do not know anything about him. Never was any one well acquainted with the Bible who did not trust him. Those who are have no ground of unbelief, no reason for not trusting him unreservedly, with all their heart and mind and strength.
Some one told me about a boy he once met in the Highlands of Scotland. There was a party of men who wanted to get the eggs of some rare birds there; and they wanted a boy to allow himself to be let down by a rope, over a fearful precipice, to a ledge where the eggs were deposited. They wanted to let the boy down in a basket; and they offered him considerable money for it. He was a poor boy, and needed the money; but all they could offer would not hire the boy to do it. But after they had teased him for some time, he said to them, "If my father will hold the rope I will go." He knew his father, and he would trust him; but he could not trust these strangers.
A man that really knows God will trust him. Did you ever hear of any one that was well acquainted with him that would not trust him? Did you ever hear of any Christian that knew anything about him that would not trust him? It is these infidels, who do not know God, that will not trust him. The only way is for you to go to him. How are you going to get to him to know him? Through the ocriptures: There he is revealed in Jesus Christ. There is no other way of knowing him, only Jesus Christ.
I want to call your attention to one thing—the result of trusting. You read of it in the 26th chapter of Isaiah. People want peace. There is nothing we want more than we want peace. All men are in pursuit of peace; and they do not know where to get it. They try various ways. They think they can get it with money; they think they can get it in the world; but the world cannot satisfy the longings of any soul, or help it to find peace. "Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on thee." It would satisfy a good many to have it read in this way: Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on himself. People are ail the time looking into their own feelings, and thinking about themselves. The most wretched people in the wide, wide world are those that are thinking about themselves. "Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on thee"—not who thinks of him now and then. It does not say so, but it says, "whose thoughts are stayed'' on him. In Proverbs, 16th chapter, and 20th verse, we read: "He that trusteth in the Lord, happy is he." Then in the 32d Psalm, 10th verse, it says: "Many sorrows shall be to the wicked, and he that trusteth in the Lord, mercy shall compass him about." Now it says, God will be merciful to him that trusteth in him. In Psalms 5th chapter, 11th verse, it says: "Let all those that put their trust in thee rejoice; let them ever shout for joy, because thou defendest them." As the horses and chariots of the Almighty surrounded Elisha when he encamped upon the mountain, so the angels of God are encamped around them that put their trust in him. "Let them also that love thy name be joyful in thee." In these verses there is peace, happiness, mercy and joy—all these blessings promised to those who trust in him.
A great many people are looking for the fruit; but they do not care about the tree. A great many people who live in the country •re not willing to plant trees on their places, but want to buy the fruit But if you are going to get the fruit of heaven, yoa have got to have the tree. If you have the tree, the fruit will be good. If you will first take his word and trust it, then follow peace and joy and mercy and happiness, all together in their places; and there is no peace and joy until you do trust and have confidence in God. Why are not people willing to come out on the Lord's side? Because they're afraid. Some women will not because they have husbands that are opposed to the family altar. But if your husband won't go, start alone. A woman in the inquiry room, the other day, told me that as soon as her husband would become a Christian she would; but the was waiting1 for him to be one. But, my friends, we do not go to heaven by families; it is one by one. Coming down here to-day, I met two funerals; but they were distinct and separate. One by one, we pass to the bar of God; one by one, we must go into the kingdom. I have no hope for those people that become Christians because some one else does. That is a personal matter; you want to come out on the Lord's side because it is right. If no one else will do it, I hope you will do it here to-day. In the 37th Psalm, 3d verse, it says: "Trust in the Lord, and do good; Bo shaltthou dwell in the land, and verily thou shalt be fed. Delight thyself also in the Lord, and he shall give thee the desires of thy heart. Commit thy way unto the Lord; trust also in him, and he shall bring it to pass. And He shall bring forth thy righteousness as the light, and thy judgment as the noonday. Rest in the Lord, and wait patiently for him. Fret not thyself because of him who prospereth in his way, because of the man who bringeth wicked devices to pass."
Now one more verse and I will be through quoting Scripture—the llth verse of the 49th chapter of Jeremiah. First, it says in the 37th Psalm, 40th verse, "He will save them because they trust in him;" that He will bring them out of all their troubles. There are two or three classes here to-day. Some are those who have learned to oast all their burdens upon God. There are a good many Christians who have not learned that lesson, but are carrying their burdens and sorrows still. Another class never cast either their burdens or their sins on Christ, but are carrying both burdens and sins themselves. What I want to say is, that you can cast everything on Christ, all sin and burden, and go out of this house with your hearts leaping within you. I want to call your attention to that verse. There may be hundreds of widows in this house to-night. You may complain of your lot, and be passing through deep affliction. He says: "Leave thy fatherless children; I will preserve them alive; and let thy widows trust in me." When I was in England I knew an eminent minister, who a few months afterward died. And for awhile before he died, he was troubled for fear his wife and children might come to want. He carried the buiden of that fear for days. A little while before he died he was lying on his sofa, and a little bird came and pecked at the window; the bird had a worm in its mouth, and afterward it flew away. The man said to himself, "Dear me! God takes care of that bird; he feeds it, yet here am I troubled about my family!" And there and then the burden was laid on the Lord. He had been one of those liberal men, and had given his money to others all through his life. Well, when he died, the people in the town raised £5,000 for hi» widow. God took care of them.
A good many people go forward into the future, and they bring all the troubles they expect to have down to the present time. They go reeling and staggering under them, and say, "I don't know what will become of me next year, or next week;" instead of remembering the words of assurance, "As thy day is, so shall thy strength be. He has plenty of grace for us. Wiiat we want is to go to him with all our troubles, and cast everything upon him. The first summer the war broke out, I heard in the fall of that same year something that touched my heart. A poor woman had been made a widow by the war. In midwinter time, she heard that her husband had been cut down. She had two little children, and she did not know what would become of her; her health was not very good and she had no money. A few days after, the landlord came round for his rent. He was a poor, heartless wretch; and when she told him her husband was dead, and she could not pay her rent, he said, with an oath, he would not have any one in his house who could not pay. After he had gone, she threw herself in the rocking-chair and wept; her little girl came to her and said: "Mamma, does not God answer prayer?" "Yes, my child." And the child wanted to put in practice what she had heard her mother preach. She said: "Then won't he take care of us if we ask him?5 "Isuppose he will." (She said "suppose," —-you see her faith was not very strong.) "Then may I not go and ask him to take care of us?" "Yes, my child; you may if you want to." The lady told me of it the next day; and she said the child never looked so sweet to her as when she went into the room where her mother had taught her to pray. The door was open a little •way, and she could see her; she put up her hands and her curls lay back from her face, and she said: "Oh, Father! you came and took away my dear papa; he was killed in the war; my mamma has no money to pay the landlord the rent, and he is going to turn us out doors. We will sit on the door-step and catch cold and die, unless you lend at a little house to live in." Then she went to her mother and said: "Jesus will take care of us because I have asked him." There u faith for you! Well, they did not have to pay any rent; a house was soon provided, and that widow and her children were taken care of. Oh, let us have child-like faith. That little girl down there has faith. She does not know where she will get her next pair of shoes, but she has faith that her mother will see that she has them.
No man or woman who ever trusted in God was disappointed or ever will be. I once noticed a lady who sat down by the side of the pulpit; and every time I would look down her eyes were riveted upon me. She looked so intent, trying to catch every word, that one day I said to her, "My friend, are you a Christian?" "Oh, no," she said, "I have been seeking Christ these three years, but cannot find him.' I said, "There is some mistake about that;" and she answered, "Do yon mean that I have not been seeking him?" "Well, I know he has been looking for you for twenty years." She asked, "What am I to do, then?" "Do! Do nothing; probably that is the trouble, that you have been trying to do." "But how am I to be saved?" she asked. "You are to believe on him, and stop trying." She scowled, and said: "Believe! believe! believe! I nave heard that word until my head swims; everybody says it, and I am none the wiser." I said: "I will drop that word for another. Tne word believe is used in the New Testament, and the word trust in the Old. I will say to you, trust the Lord to save your soul." "If I say I will trust him, will he save me?" she asked. "If you really do trust him he will save you." She said: "I trust the Lord to save me; now I do not feel any different,"—just so in one breath. I told her: "I think you have not been looking for Christ; you have been looking for feeling. God does not tell you to feel; ne tells you to trust him; and you are to let the feelings take care of themselves." "I have heard people say they felt happy when they became Christians." "Well, wait till you become a Christian, and then you may talk about a Christian's experience; you must trust the Lord that he will keep you." She sat there five minutes, and then put out her hand to me, and said, "I trust the Lord Jesus Christ to save my soul now." That was all there was to it, no praying, no weeping. The next night I was preaching she was in front of me; and I could see eternity written on her face, and the light from fields of glory in her eyes.
Oh, my friends, there is nothing to hinder your trusting him! If you do, when death shall come he won't be unwelcome; he won't terrify you. I went down the Tennessee river in war time with a boatload of wounded men, after the battle of Shiloh. Many were mortally wounded; they had taken the worst cases first. I said to those who •were with me, "We must not let these men die without telling them of heaven." One young man was unconscious, and they said he could not live. I asked the physician if he could not restore him long enough to get a message for his mother; and he gave me brandy and water, which I fed to him. He was a most beautiful boy. After a while he opened his eyes, and looked around a little wild; and I placed my hand upon his brow, and said, "My boy, do you know where you are?" .At last he said, "I am on my way home to mother." "Yes," I said, "you are; but the doctor tells me you cannot live." I asked him for a message to his mother. H« eaid, "Tell my mother that I die trusting in Christ." He did not know me, whether I was a friend or an enemy. He added, "Tell my mother and sisters to be sure to meet me in heaven;" and in t few minutes he was unconscious, and in a few hours he died. They will meet in the morning—it is only a little while—for he died trusting in Christ. Oh, may that word sink deep into every heart here 1