10/03/21 – The Fear Factor – Following the World or Christ!

Scripture:

Deuteronomy 32:17 “They sacrificed to demons, not to God, to gods they had not known, to newly arrived gods, which your fathers did not fear.”

2 Timothy 1:7 “For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.”

1 John 4:18 “There is no fear in love, but perfect love drives out fear, because fear involves punishment. The one who fears has not been perfected in love. There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.”

Jeremiah 1:8  “Now don’t be afraid the way they look at you because I’m with you to deliver you.” Then the LORD put forth his hand, and touched my mouth. And the LORD said unto me, Behold, I have put my words in thy mouth.”

Hi everyone! Sorry I missed last week. I was out of town and didn’t have adequate internet to complete my blog. I pray you have had a good week and are in a peaceful place as you walk with Christ Jesus. Amen! In my worship this week, I came across a short scripture – although it was short, it spoke volumes to me. As a result of this scripture, I gained a much greater understanding of the word “fear” as it is portrayed in the Bible. In this blog I would like to share what the Holy Spirit revealed through His Word. (Next week, I will cover the topic I planned for last week. I will be revisiting “as it was in the days of Noah”)

Let’s pray! Father God, we come before you seeking forgiveness and the saving blood of Jesus, to be justified and sanctified by His ultimate gift on Calvary’s Cross. We come requesting a fearless heart because You are with us everyday, all the way to eternal life. By the power of Your Spirit, reveal to us the truth as it relates to our Biblical understanding of fear, grow our faith that we may claim the many promises of a fearless walk with You, and help us understand the conditions of claiming this gift. In Jesus precious name, Amen!

As I was studying this last week, I came across a statement about the old testament Jewish nation and idol worship. Over and over again, they surrendered themselves to God and over and over again they fell back into apostasy – they fell back into idol worship. The statement in Deuteronomy 32:17 “They sacrificed to demons, not to God, to gods they had not known, to newly arrived gods, which your fathers did not fear.” brought a clarity to me that I had not seen before. There was no fear of false gods, stone idols, and pagan practices because they knew these false gods could do them no harm. Like us, they struggled with total and complete surrender to the Living God, through whom all things were possible, – relying instead on self, self will, self sufficiency, self governance and hundreds of other self exaltations.

So why does religion of old and today carry such a strong sense of fear? What are its origins and why has it been promoted down through the ages? If the fathers, spoken of in Deuteronomy, didn’t fear the pagan gods, then it stands to reason that their offspring didn’t either. It also stands to reason that, by following the ways of the ancient world, a person had less to fear from the world around them. They suffered less ridicule and persecution – both of which carry a load of fear. The same is true today as we see that the majority of mankind wanders after the beast. (Revelation 13:3) It is less fearful because it is the path of least resistance. It is less fearful because it is rooted in the familiar – what we can see, hear, touch, taste, feel. It is less fearful because the outcome of this life choice is hidden from us – is not spoken of, not revealed except through scripture.

Yet, once a person delves into the Holy Bible, fear rears its ugly head. Why? I am sure we have all experience the fear of the unknown – first day in a new school, new classroom, first date, first visit to the dentist, first, first, first. We are riddled with the fear of firsts so we know the feeling. We fear the unknown and many times the known and this fear can freeze us in place, it can stop our advancement, destroy our goals and dreams. It can keep us from a covenant relationship with our God and cheat us of eternal life. It can be and is often the deal breaker.

And therein lies our answer. When we embrace fear, limit ourselves because of fear, walk away from truth because of fear, we are giving ourselves over to darkness, to the persuasive emotional bombardment of Satan. Satan is the father of fear, he is the initiator of fearful thoughts in our minds, he tempted Jesus in the wilderness with fear of hunger, fear of failure, fear. When we embrace pagan ways, when we embrace the world, we are fear free. We are not at peace and find little contentment in life but we are not plagued with fear.

But when we step out in faith, excepting Jesus as our Lord and Savior, Satan’s assaults’ start in earnest. Suddenly we are bombarded with the need to be fearful of God, His vengeance, His wrath, His anger. What we need to reconcile in our hearts and minds is that this fear does not originate with God. Repeatedly, the scriptures tell us to fear not. According to Robin Gunn, there are 365 “fear not” statements in the Bible. Each one of the “fear not” promises comes with a condition – as we abide in Christ, as we surrender to the will of God, as we behold and become changed we can fear not for God is with us. And if God is with us Satan and the world cannot prevail against us. “If God be for us, who can be against us?” Romans 8:31

Until the next blog, I pray we are all able, by the grace of God, to say NO to fear, to step out in faith, knowing we serve a living God Who is able to do all things. Amen!

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