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  1. #1
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    Jun 2006
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    The Fear Of The Lord

    I have this utmost fear of disppointing Him and fear of Him. All I want to do, is do His will according to His will and not my own will. He hasn't showed me yet, but I will wait upon the Lord to give me those directions and plans that He has for me.

    Does anyone else fear the Lord?

    You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your might.
    Deut. 6:5

    You shall fear the LORD your God; him shall you serve; and to him shall you cleave, and by his name shall you swear.
    Deut. 10:20

    Do we as believing Christians know or understand what it is to fear the Lord? In our rational human minds it does seem to be a bit of a contradiction, on one hand to love God with all our hearts, minds and bodies, and on the other hand to fear Him. How can we reconcile the two?

    Of course there are no contradictions in the Bible and God is not a God of confusion - so what is the answer? Sometimes when there is a difficult passage in the Scriptures it is God's way of getting our attention to some principal or fact that is really important for us to learn.

    There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear has punishment. He who fears is not made perfect in love.
    1 Jn. 4:18

    This verse seems to be a contradiction of other verses in both the Old and New Testaments that teach us to fear the Lord, or to fear God; it plainly says that perfect love drives out fear, and the one who fears is not made perfect in love; so how can they all be right without contradicting one another?

    First we must understand what fear is: By definition it is to be afraid, having said that though there are two types of fear - the fear of the known and the fear of the unknown. We all know that it is wise to be afraid of a dangerous situation - standing too close to a loose cliff edge for instance, this is the fear of the known and it is a healthy fear, it produces respect, security and peace of mind. The fear of the unknown - the dark, unfamiliar circumstances etc., if left to run it's course it will cause the fear to grow to an uncontrollable state - even to paranoia! The fear of the unknown will bring insecurity, disorder, confusion and could lead to a person becoming temporarily paranoid. Not something that anyone would want!

    There is no fear in love. We are taught to love God and to fear Him. If there was fear in love, then we would only be told to love God. Perfect love drives out fear. To drive something out is to imply that is not welcome and the fear that perfect love drives out is certainly not welcome as it is the fear of the unknown - the fear that has to do with punishment.

    The second half of the verse tells us that the one who fears is not made perfect in love; this is because their faith is not of the reassuring kind that affirms their acceptance by God. They still, in uncertainty, fear reprisals for their sin on the day of judgement; they are in the fear of the unknown because they are not sure of what will happen to them. Those that are made perfect in love, by their acceptance and reassuring knowledge of the finished work of Christ on the cross, choose to fear God out of a holy respect for who God is.

    Notice that they choose to fear, it is not fear that is controlling them but they who are controlling the fear. Although the Bible tells us to fear God, it is still something that we have to choose to do, God cannot make us fear Him, it is a decision of our own free will; we are in control of how much we fear and when we fear; not like the fear of the unknown which is uncontrollable, which actually controls us rather than us controlling it.

    The fear of the known, in respect to God, is like a child knowing what his
    parents allow or disallow and the results of disobedience. The child knows that his parents love him and want only what is good for him and therefore are willing to discipline him when needed in order to bring him up according to what is right and wrong. The child has a healthy fear of his parents and at the same time loving and trusting his parents because he knows that they love him.

    As many as I love, I reprove and chasten. Be zealous therefore, and repent.
    Rev. 3:19

    5 and you have forgotten the exhortation which reasons with you as with children,"My son, don't take lightly the chastening of the Lord, Nor faint when you are reproved by him;
    6 For whom the Lord loves, he chastens,
    And scourges every son whom he receives."
    7 It is for discipline that you endure. God deals with you as with children, for what son is there whom his father doesn't discipline?
    8 But if you are without discipline, whereof all have been made partakers, then are you illegitimate, and not children.
    9 Furthermore, we had the fathers of our flesh to chasten us, and we paid them respect. Shall we not much rather be in subjection to the Father of spirits, and live?
    10 For they indeed, for a few days, punished us as seemed good to them; but he for our profit, that we may be partakers of his holiness.
    11 All chastening seems for the present to be not joyous but grievous; yet afterward it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been exercised thereby.
    Heb. 12:5-11

    So, you might ask, why should we fear God? First because the Bible tells us to - God loves obedient children - second, because it is good for us. God doesn't tell us to do something for no reason; in everything there is a purpose and that is for us to reach maturity in Christ. Moses explained why we ought to fear God and it is interesting that in the following passage he shows the two kinds of fear - first the fear of the unknown and then the fear of the known.
    18 All the people perceived the thunderings, the lightnings, the sound of the trumpet, and the mountain smoking. When the people saw it, they trembled, and stayed at a distance.
    19 They said to Moses, "Speak with us yourself, and we will listen; but don't let God speak with us, lest we die."
    20 Moses said to the people, "Don't be afraid, for God has come to test you, and that his fear may be before you, that you won't sin."
    21 The people stayed at a distance, and Moses drew near to the thick darkness where God was.
    Ex. 20:18-21

    The people were afraid because they had never seen and heard anything like this before - it was unknown to them and consequently the were afraid of what might happen to them. Moses however calms their fears and explains to them what is happening and what will happen. The fear of the unknown becomes the fear of the known and it brings with it peace and reassurance.
    This is the fear of God, knowing what God expects of us and what the consequences of sin and disobedience are. The fear of God will be with you to keep you from sinning. So as we have seen there are no problems with the commands:

    You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your might.
    Deut. 6:5

    You shall fear the LORD your God; him shall you serve; and to him shall you cleave, and by his name shall you swear.
    Deut. 10:20

    To love God is to fear God. To always have that Holy fear which is due reverance to a awesome, mighty, righteous and perfect God who loves us enough to have given His only Son as an atoning sacrifice in our place. May the fear, and therefore the peace, of God go with you.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    sacramento CA
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    I am reminded of all the times in the Bible where it is said that, the fear of God is not in them or befor their eyes, and they have not the fear of God. Enjoyed your post...DGB

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
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    Thankyou for the post sister.

    If I could suggest........the word 'fear' in scripture can often be exchanged for the word 'reverence' The two words are interchangeble. The 'fear' spoken of in scripture in not the fear of dread. I speak in the Christian context here. In your context the word fear = awe, combined with respect, veneration.

    When we have accepted Jesus as our Saviour, repented from our sin and been born again. We are then part of Gods family here upon the earth. God is our Father.....and He is a loving Father who wants to bless us every day. He wants us to ask for His help in everything we do.

    God Bless You
    Jesus said "I am the WAY the TRUTH and the LIFE"......Without the WAY there is no GOING, without the TRUTH there is no KNOWING without the LIFE there is no LIVING....Thats what Jesus said.

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