The Fear of God
First of all, let me say this; the Fear of God is a good thing.
If you will keep iniquities, O Jehovah, O Lord, who shall stand?
But forgiveness is with you, that you may be feared.Psalms 130:3+4
I believe that the fear of God and the love of God are two sides of the same coin.
Can you love God and not fear him? Or fear God and not love him? I don’t think that is possible. Some one that loves God is not going to do things to displease him, the same as one who fears their Lord.
The reason the fear of the Lord is a difficult subject is because us as human beings have all kinds of fears. Before we were converted, we were run by the fear of death. Remember Adam our father in the flesh, he was afraid of God after he sinned and hid from him. So now all of us sinners are afraid of God and try to hide from him, because our deeds are evil.(John3:18) God is light and in him is no darkness at all.(1 John 1:5)
Therefore since the children have partaken of flesh and blood, in like manner Jesus Christ, God’s Son himself also shared the same things, that through death he might do away with the one having the power of death, that is, the devil; and might set these free, as many as by fear of death were subject to slavery through all the time to live. (Hebrews 2:14+15)
Now when one becomes born of the spirit, we are delivered from bondage to those fears, set free and can serve God without fear. (Luke 1:74)
So for one, we have to separate; there is one way people in the flesh,(unconverted ones) fear God and a totally different way Christians fear God (because their sins have been forgiven them).
One group of people fear God because they know what the punishment of their sins will be, the other group of people fear God because he has forgiven them of their sins.
Looking at fear of God in the New Testament
Let’s look at some scriptures, in the New Testament for now.
And they ( the ones overcoming), sing the song of Moses the slave of God and the song of the lamb saying; Great and marvelous are your works, Lord God almighty, righteous and true are your ways, King of the saints, who will not fear you and not glorify your name, not any? For you only are holy. For all the nations will come and will worship before you, because your righteous deeds were made known.
Revelation 14:7 Fear God and give him glory, (speaking to earth dwellers)
Revelation 11:8 Fearing your name…
Revelation 19:5 Praise God, all his slaves and the ones fearing him.
1 Peter 2:17 Honor all people. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honor the king
Colossians 3:22 Bondservants, obey in all things your masters according to the flesh, not with eyeservice, as men pleasers, but in sincerity of heart, fearing God.
Romans 11:20 well said, because of unbelief they were broken off, and you stand by faith. do not be haughty, but fear.
Acts 13:26 Men and brethren, sons of the family of Abraham and those among you who fear God, listen;
Acts 10:35 but in every nation whoever fears Him and works righteousness is accepted by Him.
Acts 10:22 and they said, Cornelius the centurion, a just man, one who fears God and has a good reputation among all the nation of the Jews, was divinely instructed by a holy angel to summon you to his house, and to hear words from you.
Cornelius, a devout man and one who feared God with all his household, who gave alms generously to the people and prayed to God always.
Luke 23:40 (the two criminals who were crucified with Jesus Christ) but the other answering, rebuked him, saying; do you not fear God, seeing you are under the same condemnation?
Luke 1:50 and his mercy is on those who fear Him from generation to generation
Mark 5:33 but the woman fearing and trembling, knowing what had happened to her, came and fell down before him and told him the whole truth
Matthew 27:54 so when the centurion and those with him, who were guarding Jesus, saw the earthquake and the things that had happened, the feared greatly, saying; truly this was the Son of God!
The fear of God is not what you think!
But forgiveness is with you, that you may be feared. Psalms 130:4
What does the fear of God cause?
There are two possible reactions; one from his children and another from those who are in the flesh.
After a miracle Jesus Christ did;
and amazement seized them all and they glorified God and were filled with fear, saying; we saw wonderful things today. (Luke 5:26)
And after another miracle;
and fear took hold of all; and they glorified God, saying, a great prophet has risen up among us; and, God has visited his people. (Luke 7:16)
And here is the other reaction also after a miracle Jesus Christ did;
And all the multitude of the surrounding region of the Gadarenes were seized with a great fear and asked him to depart from them. And entering into the boat, he returned. (Luke 8:37)
In the first two examples, the fear of God caused the people to praise God and to be in awe and amazement.
In the third example, the fear of God caused the people to ask Jesus to depart from them, and he did.
More scriptures to come.....
The fear of God verse everyone likes to use...
Matthew 10:28(also Luke 12:4+5)
And you should not fear the ones killing the body, but not being able to kill the soul. But rather fear him, the one being able to destroy both soul and body in hell.
First, who is Jesus talking to?
Matthew 10:1 and having called his twelve disciples…
Matthew 10:5 and Jesus sent these twelve out, charging them saying…
Then Matthew 11:1 and it happened when Jesus finished commanding his twelve disciples…..
It should be very clear by now that Jesus was talking to his twelve disciples.
Jesus was sending his twelve disciples out to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. (Matthew 10:6)
He was sending his twelve disciples out to proclaim that the kingdom of heaven has drawn near. (Verse 7)
He was giving them power to heal every infirmity and cast out unclean spirits. (Verse 1+8)
Behold I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves. Therefore, be wise as serpents and harmless as doves.
He explained to them that they were going to run into “trouble”; being brought before governors (Verse 18),
That brother will give over brother, fathers their children, children against parents… (19)
And you will be hated by all on account of my name, but the one enduring to the end will be kept safe. (22)
And he told them since they were going to do this to him; they would also do it to them. (23-25)
Than in verse 28 he told them not to fear them but to fear God.
29-31 He tells them not to fear because God is in control of everything, using the example how God takes care of the sparrow, even more he will take care of them.
In my view, here is what Jesus is telling them;
I’m sending you to proclaim that the kingdom of heaven is near. You will meet with hardship and opposition and even death, yes, it sounds like you will have reason to fear, but if you are going to fear, don’t fear them, because they can only kill the body. If you are going to fear, fear God who after he killed the body, also can cast into hell. But I tell you, don’t fear at all; look at the sparrows, God takes care of them all, so don’t you fear, because you are much more valuable to God than any sparrow. God even knows how many hairs are on your head.
Our heavenly Father doesn't want us to be afraid of him!
There are many scriptures where our heavenly Father, his son Jesus Christ or Angels say to us;
Because we still have our flesh, we easily get startled by heavenly beings or by their presence!
Matthew 1:20, Matthew 14:27, Matthew 17:7, Matthew 28:5, Matthew 28:10, Mark 6:50, Luke 1:13, Luke 1:30, Luke 2:10, Luke 8:50, John 6:20, John 12:15, Revelation 1:17.
Godly fear verses afraid
It's rather simple;
any FEAR that moves you toward God = Godly Fear
any FEAR that moves you away from God = afraid
What the enemy says about the Fear of God;
And the Lord said to satan; have you considered my servant Job? That there is none like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man,
WHO FEARS GODand turns away from evil?
Than satan answered the Lord and said;
Does Job FEAR GOD for no reason? Have you not put a hedge around and his house and all that he has, on every side? You have blessed the work of his hands and his possessions have increased in the land.
There we see, that according to satan, God's enemy;
Job fears God, because God is protecting him and blessing him.
(and goes on to say that if God stops protecting and blessing Job, that Job then would curse God.....which God let satan take everything from Job, yet Job did not curse God)
The Fear of God in the Old Covenant
The fear of God and righteousness
But in every nation whoever fears him and works RIGHTEOUSNESS is accepted by him.
Only the righteous can fear God? ( I mean have godly Fear)
Yes, remember; there is forgiveness with you, that you may be feared! (Psalms 130:4)
If one is forgiven he is righteous!
Not because of ourselves, but because of what Jesus has done for us!
C. H. Spurgeon on the Fear of God
How wise and brave we shall be if we fear God. It is well put in the Psalm which we sometimes sing;
Fear him, you Saints, and you will then have nothing else to fear. This great filial fear will chase out all the little, cowardly fears, for he who in the scriptural sense fears God, can never be a coward in dealing with men.
under construction, more to come....soon.....I promise!