Fear has grabbed hold of too many Tucsonans today. The future is in doubt for the present is very unstable. Fear is having a field day! Let’s take a few moments and take a look at fear.
Fear of God:
Fear of God (yare in Hebrew) truly means “awed awareness” of who he is.
Joshua 24:14. . . Now fear the LORD and serve him with all faithfulness. Throw away the gods your forefathers worshiped beyond the River and in Egypt, and serve the LORD.
Hebrews 12:28-29. . . Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us be thankful, and so worship God acceptably with reverence and awe, for our “God is a consuming fire.”
Proverbs 1:7. . . The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and discipline. Exhortations to Embrace Wisdom.
Fear is an Emotion:
Old Testament uses of “fear” often indicate the all-too-familiar feeling of terror. Adam and Eve fled from God in the Garden of Eden, Adam later explaining, “I heard you in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked” (Genesis 3:10). A basic cause of this emotion is awareness of vulnerability because of sin or because of the perceived power of another to do harm. The Hebrew people experienced such terror at Sinai (Deuteronomy 5:5), and Saul was gripped by fear when he saw the size of the massive Philistine army (1Sa 28:5). The antidote for the emotion of fear is the conviction that God is for us and with us.
Genesis 3:10. . . He answered, “I heard you in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid.”
Deuteronomy 5:5. . . At that time I stood between the LORD and you to declare to you the word of the LORD, because you were afraid of the fire and did not go up the mountain.
1Samuel 28:5. . . When Saul saw the Philistine army, he was afraid; terror filled his heart.
Job 15:24. . . Distress and anguish fill him with terror; they overwhelm him, like a king poised to attack.
Proverbs 29:25. . . Fear of man will prove to be a snare, but whoever trusts in the LORD is kept safe.
Isaiah 51:12-13. . . I, even I, am he who comforts you. Who are you that you fear mortal men, the sons of men, who are but grass, that you forget the LORD your Maker, who stretched out the heavens and laid the foundations of the earth, that you live in constant terror every day because of the wrath of the oppressor, who is bent on destruction? For where is the wrath of the oppressor?
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