First Baptist Church of Angleton Service Message

Shawn Thomas is pastor of First Baptist Church of Angleton.

Editor’s note: The Facts presents a new regular feature, Sunday Sermon, written by local pastors. It will appear every weekend in the Brazos Life section.

Topic: Our Confidence In Crisis (Psalm 78:7)

In Betty Rogers’ biography of her late husband Will, she tells about the time when she and Will were visiting Europe, and air travel was still relatively new. She wrote, “Will insisted on flying the (English) Channel to Amsterdam. It was to be my first flight, and I was in a real panic. … With the ground falling away under me, I reached over to hold on to Will. He laughed and said, ‘Woman, don’t hold on to me. I couldn’t be of any help to you!’”

Betty Rogers thought of her husband as a “security blanket” — and he was for her in many ways — but Will was right; if that plane were going to crash, he wouldn’t be of any help to her. Her ultimate confidence could not be placed in him.

And that’s a picture of what Psalm 78:7 teaches. God had commanded His people in verse 5 that they were to teach their children, and then verse 7 relates just what the lesson was that they were to teach them: “that they should put their confidence in God.”

This lesson is foundational because it is how we are saved in the first place: by putting our confidence in God, trusting that what Jesus did for us when He died on the cross, will save us. Placing our confidence in our own good works, or in men’s religious systems, will fail us. Our trust must be in HIM, and in what HE did on the cross, alone.

This is also very applicable for us in our current COVID-19 situation, isn’t it? If we are wise, whenever we come into times of difficulty, we will ask what God wants us to learn from these experiences. Psalm 78 instructs us that perhaps the most important lesson God has for us during this time, is to make sure that our confidence in these days is in Him.

We need that reminder, because it is so easy in times like this — perhaps without even thinking about it — to put our trust in things other than God. We might hear people say things like:

“Well I trust our President; I know that Trump is going to get us through.” Their trust is in a man.

Or: “I know Uncle Sam won’t let us fail; they’ll send us enough money to help us.” Their trust is in the government.

— Someone else may think: “I’m a ‘self-made man;’ I’ve got a big savings account; I am going to be just fine.” Their trust is in their money.

— Or it might be: “I don’t have anything to worry about; I’ve always been healthy” — so their confidence is in their health and physical condition.

— Or: “I know we’ve got the best medical system in the world here in the Houston area” — and their trust is in medicine.

Or someone thinks: “If I don’t have anything else, I know I have my family; they will always come through for me.” So their trust is in their loved ones.

But one of the repeated emphases God gives us in Scripture is that our ultimate trust is not to be placed in anyone or anything besides Him.

Psalm 20:7 says: “Some boast in chariots and some in horses, but we will boast in the name of the LORD our God.” God wants our trust to be in Him. Trust God to be the One who delivers you in the day of trouble; not anyone or anything else.

It’s just like Will Rogers’ wife Betty on that airplane: Her ultimate trust could not be in him if things went wrong. That confidence would fail her! It’s the same with us in this COVID-19 episode. Don’t put your hope in the wrong sources for help in this time; make certain that your trust is in God alone.

Now, that does not mean that God won’t use some of these other entities:

God may use our president.

God may use the government.

God may use doctors and medicines.

God may use your family, and bankers or politicians or whomever. God raises up people all the time that He employs for His own good purposes.

But the thing is, our ultimate trust is not to be placed in any of these instruments that God may use, but in God Himself. If we begin to put our trust in other things, God will often allow them to fail, to demonstrate to us that our ultimate confidence is not to be found in them. Our ultimate trust is to be in God. Himself. Alone.

Psalm 78 reminds us of this fundamental lesson God wants us and our loved ones to learn during this time: “That they should put their confidence in God.”

Shawn Thomas is pastor of First Baptist Church of Angleton.

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