Have you recently heard the word “fear” in relation to the pandemic, elections, fires, and even drinking water? Yes. The news, “Brain-eating amoeba in city’s water supply kills 6-year-old,” may have caught your attention when Texas Governor Abbott issued a disaster declaration in Brazoria County on September 27 after an amoeba that can cause a rare and deadly infection of the brain was discovered in the local water supply system. What more could happen in 2020, we may ask. Few would disagree with author/speaker Jonathan Chan’s statement that 2020 has been a year of America being shaken. Is our being shaken a bad thing? Or, might it be a wake up call? While some today discount the value of fear and associate it with not trusting God, the Bible explains the value of fear that is rightly placed. Is ours? For more on the kinds of fear and to consider which fear you have, read my column, “Are Christians to Fear or Not Fear?“
You who fear the LORD, trust in the LORD; He is their help and their shield. Psalm 115:11
Heavenly Father, our nation has been shaken. Shaken by fires, lawlessness, the murders of innocent ones, disease, floods, and more. We are looking to You, our Lord and Savior. Teach us how to walk through our days so that we point others to You.
Are Christians to Fear or Fear Not?
So that it is well with us and our children.
- ‘Oh that they had such a heart in them, that they would fear Meand keep all My commandmentsalways, that it may be well with them and with their sons forever! Deuteronomy 5:29.
To keep us from sinning.
- …the fear of Him may remain with you, so that you may not sin.” Exodus 20:20
For our good and survival.
- “So the LORD commanded us to observe all these statutes, to fear the LORD our God for our good always and for our survival, as [it is] today. Deuteronomy 6:25
- The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom; A good understanding have all those who do [His commandments;] His praise endures forever. Psalm 111:10
For God’s help and protection.
- You who fear the LORD, trust in the LORD; He is their help and their shield. Psalm 115:11
- He will fulfill the desire of those who fear Him; He will also hear their cry and will save them. Psalm 145:19
- The angel of the LORD encamps around those who fear Him, And rescues them. Psalm 34:7
A healthy fear of God keeps us from destructive sin and in close reliance on the Holy Spirit so we discern His voice and are empowered to walk in His ways.
WE ARE NOT TO FEAR MAN (Anxious concern)
- The LORD said to Joshua, “Do not fear them, for I have given them into your hands; not one of them shall stand before you.” Joshua 10:8
- The LORD is for me; I will not fear; What can man do to me? Psalm 118:6
- But Moses said to the people, “Do not fear! Stand by and see the salvation of the LORD which He will accomplish for you today; for the Egyptians whom you have seen today, you will never see them again forever. Exodus 14:13
- ‘Do not fear them, for the LORD your God is the one fighting for you.’ Deuteronomy 3:22
- But even if you should suffer for the sake of righteousness, you are blessed. AND DO NOT FEAR THEIR INTIMIDATION, AND DO NOT BE TROUBLED, 1 Peter 3:14
- ‘Do not fear what you are about to suffer. Behold, the devil is about to cast some of you into prison, so that you will be tested, and you will have tribulation for ten days. Be faithful until death, and I will give you the crown of life. Revelation 2:10
THE POSITIVE OUTCOMES OF FEARING GOD & NOT FEARING MAN
- going on in the fear of the Lord and in the comfort of the Holy Spirit, it (the church) continued to increase. Acts 9:31
- Come and hear, all who fear God, And I will tell of what He has done for my soul. Psalm 66:16
Having a healthy fear of God that results in our walking by His Spirit provideS opportunities for us to tell others about Jesus. We will see people come to salvation and the church increase.
Do we have the right kind of fear?
‘Oh that they had such a heart in them, that they would fear Meand keep all My commandments always, that it may be well with them and with their sons forever! Deuteronomy 5:29
A “Go To” Resort
Psalm 34:4 says, “I sought the Lord, and He answered me and delivered me from all my fears.” Nice verse, right? No, not nice verse. It’s an incredible verse. Fear is coursing through the veins of people. “What will happen to our nation/world? What will happen to my children and grandchildren? What will happen to me?” This is not God’s intention for us. Let’s look at the meaning of some of the psalmist words and rethink why Psalm 34:4 should be our testimony. “Sought” in this verse means “resort to.” Think vacation. You leave and go to a place that revives you. This is what we can do spiritually rather than trek through our day with fear. We can trip off to heaven. We can “resort to” the LORD in our spirit through prayer. What happened when the psalmist resorted to the Lord? God answered him and delivered him from all his fears. The word “deliver” means “snatch.” The Lord snatched him away from his fears. Friends, what a blessing to know that when we resort to the Lord rather than resort to worry and imagining the worst, He snatches us from our fear. That’s the best vacation we could take in our worrisome day.
Heavenly Father, thank You that we aren’t stuck in fear. Rather, we can resort to You.
A Resort to Go To
Psalm 34:4 says, “I sought the Lord, and He answered me, and delivered me from all my fears.” Nice verse, right? No. Not “nice verse.” It’s an incredible verse. Fear is coursing through the veins of people. “What will happen to our nation? What will happen to my children and grandchildren? What will happen to me?” This is not God’s intention for us. Let’s go to the meaning behind some of these words and rethink why the words the psalmist said should be our testimony among our peers. SOUGHT: resort to. Think vacation. You yearn to leave the daily grind. You want to go to another place that is peaceful, not draining. Then resort to the LORD. Take your spirit there. Trip off to heaven. “I resorted to the LORD and He answered me.” I went to the front desk of heaven and Jesus was there. “And He answered and delivered me from all my fears.” DELIVER: snatch. Jesus snatched me away from my fears. Friends, when we resort to the Lord, He snatches us from our fears and shows us His heavenly perspective from heaven’s eternal heights. That’s the best vacation we could ever take. Isn’t it time we go there?
Heavenly Father, help us not read Bible verses and think, “that’s nice.” Help us live the words of the Bible.