Dr. R.T. Kendall followed in the footsteps of Dr. Martin Lloyd Jones as the pastor of Westminster Chapel from 1977 to 2002. In his autobiography entitled In Pursuit of His Glory, he tells of how the great American Baptist theologian Carl Henry became a favorite summer preacher at the chapel. One of the memories that stood out to Dr. Kendall during that time was a conversation he had with Carl Henry while driving together to a service at the chapel. He asked him, “Carl if you had your life to live over, what would you do differently?” The great theologian paused for a moment as the car passed Buckingham Palace in London and then said, “I would remember that only God can turn water into wine.”
What an intriguing answer! Philosophically he is challenging naturalism and the denial of the miraculous. Theologically he is defending the majesty and omnipotence of God. But more than anything, personally he is reminding himself and us to trust God more. To make God our only hope. Carl Henry wants us all to cultivate a bigger faith in a bigger God. This wise word teaches that a little bit of God makes up for a great deal less of us. This startling statement, in large measure rebukes our trust of self, our high view of man, our human scheming, and our lack of waiting on God. If only God can turn water into wine, then we must center our trust, hope, and confidence in God alone.
With this call for a greater trust in the Almighty ringing in our ears, we turn to Psalm 62 where David expresses a solitary trust in God (Psa. 62:1, 2, 5, 6). God alone is his rock and redeemer. Faced with either Saul’s jealousy or Absalom’s rebellion historically speaking, David puts all his eggs into the basket of God as his only hope. David believes God to be true (vv. 8–10). David expects God to defend and deliver Him (v. 5). David is unworried given the power of God (v. 11). Amid pending peril, David celebrates with unshakable confidence that God can be trusted alone and always (vv. 2, 6, 8).
A closer look at the text shows us three things that helped David believe that only God can turn water into wine and that God is the believer’s only hope. First, David got involved in a little theological self-talk (vv. 5–6). He exhorts himself to expect great things from a great God. There is no extended brooding over his enemies or circumstances, but rather a filling of His mind with thoughts about God (Psa. 42:5; 43:5). Second, David reminds himself to wait on the Lord (Psa. 62:1, 5). He cautions himself not to get ahead of the problem in a way that runs ahead of God. David reminds himself that a humanly manufactured response apart from God’s help can add to the problem more than solve it. David’s waiting is not passive however; it is an active looking to God for an answer. Third, David pours out his heart in prayer (v. 8). Within the grammar of the text, trusting God and praying to God are synonymous. To say you trust God is to say your prayers. In praying, we enlist the help of God and, once again, a little bit of God makes up for a great deal less of us.
Seeing God as our only hope requires persuasion, patience and prayer. Ron Dunn the beloved Baptist evangelist said, “Christians are people of the only.” Let’s live in a way that shows God only is our rock, salvation and defense. Let’s be people of the only hope.