Fear: A mixed feeling of dread and reverence.
This is the definition of good fear. I talked a little bit about bad fear in part one, now I want to focus on good fear. There is many verses in the bible that start with “Fear not.” God is comforting us, telling us not to believe satans lies. There is also many verses in the bible that say something like a man who feareth the Lord, or they instruct us to fear the Lord. This is the good fear, the fear we should have. As I was looking up this definition I was directed to the word archaic which means a word or style of language no longer used in our everyday vocabulary. That word came before this definition of fear. The archaic definition of dread is: regarded with great awe, greatly revered. The archaic definition of reverence is: a gesture indicative of respect. So by tracing these definitions back to a language used in the years BC I was better able to understand what the good fear really means.
“The angel of the Lord emcampeth round about them that fear him, and delivereth them.” Pslam 34:7.
I have never seen and angel but it is so awesome to think that God equips those that fear him with that protection!! There are so many verses in the bible instructing us to fear God. When I think about it, if we fear God and keep his commandments there is really nothing on earth worth causing us fear. If we are in God’s will he will always be there for us, guiding us through anything we are faced with. 1 Kings chapter 18 and 19 tells the story of Elija confronting King Ahab. I thought it was kind of interesting because Elija meets up with someone by the name of Obadiah. It says twice in chapter 18 that Obadiah feared the Lord greatly. Elija asked him to go tell Ahab that Elija was here. Obadiah expresses multiple times that he is afraid Ahab would slay him if he went to him with that news. In the end Obadiah’s fear of the Lord won out over his human fear. He went and told Ahab which lead to Elija proving that God is the true God by the fire coming down from Heaven onto the sacrifice. It just really spoke to me how our fear may hinder God’s plan. If we can overcome our fears we can let God work through us to further his kingdom! Then the story goes on that after Elija proved Baal was wrong Jezebel threatened his life. He then ran into the wilderness because he was afraid. God spoke to him and pretty much told him that he still had work for him. He wanted Elisha to be his successor. So Elija overcame his fears and followed Gods direction. I just summarized 1 Kings 18-19 but please go read it for yourself. In the end God ends up taking Elija in a fiery chariot to Heaven. Elija’s work payed off. He overcame his human fears and feared God more.
This is such an awesome story because it shows how human we really are. We mess up, we fall short, we are SO far away from perfect! But God is a God of great compassion, mercy, and grace. He is always there holding our hand and guiding us. There is no limits to his power. I keep reminding myself to overcome my human fear because God is who I want to fear. No matter how small I feel my part or purpose is, it is still part of his plan and I don’t want to neglect it. Just like Obadiah, his role seemed so small in the big picture, but it was still a part that needed to be there. He was afraid for his life but he feared God more and trusted him. Great things happened because of it. God promises so many good things to those who fear him.
“Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.” 2 Corinthians 7:1.
“For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father.” Romans 8:15.
So I pray we can get rid of all the yuckiness of life. Satan’s temptations, lies, fear, etc and fear God. We are adopted by him, we are his sons and daughters if we have repented of our sins and vowed to serve him. So lets trust him and overcome our fear so we can do great things for his glory!
“Fear thou not; for I am with tee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.” Isaiah 41:10.