Have you ever found yourself saying, I need some help, but there was nobody around that could help you with your trouble? What do you do in that situation? Do you give up? Today, I tell you that I know someone that is dependable and can help you with all of your troubles! My thought for today comes from just one key scripture that I will share below.

I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help.

Psalm 121:1 KJV

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You will notice that I took this scripture from the King James Version (KJV), which I always read from, but I typically share the New King James Version (NKJV) in my video and text content. There’s a reason for my using of KJV this time and I’ll explain why later on. This particular scripture is one that is well known and also often referenced definitely in the Baptist church. I would hear this scripture said nearly every time someone would step to the announcement podium to make an announcement. There would be two statements made, with the first being, “I’d like to thank God who is the head of my life.” The second statement would be this scripture from the 121st Psalm.

My dad taught a Sunday school lesson that was from this psalm on the Sunday he passed, but a few days prior he discussed this passage with me and I am very thankful for the discussion. It bothered him that people would stand up, say this scripture, but not really understand what David was saying in both this verse and the verse that follows. David was certainly a man who was troubled – he lived during a time of war with the Philistines. However troubled David was, he was also a man of great faith in the Lord our God. I want you to keep that in mind as we continue forward in today’s message.

Again I ask, have you ever needed help with something, but there as nobody around that could help you with whatever trouble you were having? Now, I want you to understand, I’m not talking about someone not physically being there for you. The question that I am asking you today could be better understood by knowing you have people that you can depend on for help, but no matter how hard they tried to help you with your troubles, they still could not help you. Have you ever been in this kind of trouble?

From an early age, we learn that there are some sources we can depend on in our times of trouble. Babies want their mother – sorry dads, they really only know mom. However, the baby becomes a toddler and the toddler now knows that he/she can get help from both momma and daddy. This knowledge works really well until the child becomes a teenager (still a child) and the teenager starts turning to friends for help instead of the parents. The teen doesn’t quite know that not all help is a good help, and not all advice from teenagers is sound advice. The teenager grows into a young adult and has learned the friends that he/she can depend on but sadly the young adult has to learn another lesson in life – everybody has to deal with adult problems. We become full-fledged adults, older and a bit wiser, and we understand that we can turn to family, our good friends, and they will help as much as they possibly can.

In most scenarios, these people are a great help to us in our time of trouble and in our needs. These dependable people have shown us that we can count on them to go the distance and do as much as within their power to help us in our time of need. We should certainly surround ourselves with a good group of people who will rejoice when we rejoice and weep when we weep (Rom. 12:15). When we weep, we hope that these dependable people will be the ones to lift us up off of our weeping knees. However, the truth of the matter is that there are some troubles that these great and dependable sources may be unable to help us with – what do we do then?

The limited power of man

For some, this question could be rather hard to answer. Life, however, forces us to answer this question more often than not. Some people throw their hands in the air and give up – they let their troubles win. This is a problem for me – we can’t let our troubles beat us. There’s a choice that absolutely everybody has to make when they walk in this world – who will we depend on in these types of troubles. Some of us make the choice to believe in the power of the Almighty God and depend on His power. Others, on the other hand, will continue to depend on the hands of man (or their own hands) in these times of need. I preached last week on how being stubborn, and depending solely on self is not a truly bright idea.

Sadly, on the opposite side of selfish isolated stubbornness is being too dependent on others. I feel that sometimes we become too dependent on the hands of man. Let me make this clear, I’m not saying that you should not ever ask for help! What I am saying and will talk about today is how many of us would rather depend on the hands of man instead of believing and trust in the power of God! This way of thinking, to me, is extremely dangerous. The danger, you may ask, is that we, mankind, are limited creatures. By this, I mean that there is only so much that we can do for ourselves and for anybody else! There is a limit to the power of man. We, especially believers, must be wary of our dependency on man over the Lord.

I want to show you how reckless the way of thinking that man can do more for you in your time of trouble than the Lord. In the book of Isaiah, the children of Israel had been divided into two kingdoms – a northern and southern kingdom. The northern kingdom was made up of ten tribes that were conquered by the Assyrians. The southern kingdom, primarily the tribe of Judah (the Jews), was under Assyrian threat. These were people who knew of the Lord, were His chosen people, and knew of what God had done for their ancestors. However, in this time of trouble, you would be surprised to see who they would choose to depend on.

Woe to those who go down to Egypt for help, And rely on horses, Who trust in chariots because they are many, And in horsemen because they are very strong, But who do not look to the Holy One of Israel, Nor seek the Lord!

Isaiah 31:1 NKJV

Woe is a warning – a very serious warning coming from the Lord. Notice what is written here in this scripture and pay very close attention to this. The tribe of Judah was under threat of being conquered and instead of turning to the Lord, they were choosing to turn to Egypt! Let me remind you, this is the same Egypt that had held the children of Israel in bondage! Instead of crying out to the Lord, or seeking Him, they were depending on the Egyptians (their horses, their chariots, their large number of soldiers) over their God, the Holy One of Israel – our God! What did they believe the Egyptians could do that God could not do – the same God that brought them out of Egypt in the first place!

There are many people that think just like this in our world today. People who find themselves in trouble, won’t utter a prayer to the Lord because of what they think they know, but they will go and turn to the man no matter how much man has hurt them in the past. I certainly hope that you are not one of these types of people. Woe to those that depend on the hands of man, more than the power of God! If you are one of these people, and you’ve been saying I need help, I tell you that it’s time you start looking beyond the limited power of man’s hands.

Faith in the power of God

David, King David, was a man who people often bring up his failures first but forget that he was a man very strong in his faith in the Lord. David, in a time of trouble, said he looked to the hills and wondered where his help would come from. The New King James version turns this scripture into a question because logical thinking would determine this scripture to be a question and not a statement. My dad pointed out to me, just days before he passed, that there is no question mark in the King James Version. Theologians will likely say David was asking a question, but I personally like to believe that David was making a statement – it’s a statement that all believers should know and make.

David, being a man of faith, was not expecting for help to come over those hills because he knew where his help was coming from! Let’s look at the first and second verse together.

1 I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help. 2 My help cometh from the Lord, which made heaven and earth.

Psalm 121:1-2 KJV

For me, that is a statement of faith in the power of the Lord. Too often, we frame this scripture in a way that makes it seem like we’re looking for the Lord to come over that hill. Let me tell you something: Jesus is not coming over that hill for you! Jesus sits up high (in heaven) on the right side of His Father. Our help does not come from over the hills we face in this life, no, it comes from on high – from heaven!

David said (Ps. 60:11) that the help of man is vain (useless). Again, what can man do that God cannot do? Truly, consider the power of the Lord and compare His power to that of a man, woman, boy, or girl. Do you really believe that we are more powerful than the One who created all that is known and unknown? Do you really believe that we are more powerful than the One who created us in His image? “Through God, we will do valiantly,” David says (Ps. 60:12). The problem we face today is that we have stopped believing in the unlimited power of God and settled for the limited power of man. I don’t know about you, but I’d rather trust and depend on the power of God over the power of man any day!

God is spirit! We are limited physical beings whereas the Lord has absolutely no bounds! Too often we get caught up and focused on our physical realities and we end up putting the physical over God (the spiritual) – this is a great concern to me. God can help you in ways that no man will ever be able to help you. David goes on to say that God will preserve (keep) your soul (Ps. 121:7). Whatever troubles you, whatever you need help with, God will help you. God will not say to you, “maybe”, “come back later on”, or “not today”. The Lord, David says (Ps. 121:8), will preserve your going out and coming in even forevermore. Why depend on man?

I want to leave you with this lasting thought that comes from some of Paul’s writing. Paul wrote:

Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in needs, in persecutions, in distresses, for Christ’s sake. For when I am weak, then I am strong.

2 Corinthians 12:10 NKJV

How often do you take pleasure in your times of troubles? How often do you take pleasure in needing God’s help? We should rejoice in our time of trouble, knowing that we can turn to the Lord, and knowing that God will bring us out of all of our troubles! If you don’t rejoice when you’re in trouble, when you need help, I tell you that it’s time you turn from whatever you have been depending on and truly trust in the power of the Lord!

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