Whom Shall I Fear?

by Scarlett Stough

For the Scripture References and related Bible Study Guide, go to Bible Study Guide: Fear God.

Fear is everywhere today. Fear appears to run politics and political opinions. Fear drives people to leave their homes for refuge in unwelcoming places. Fear often keeps people from activities they would like to do. Fear drives prejudices and hate-filled rhetoric and actions. Fear is often the strongest reason for decisions people make. Fearful news reports lead the news broadcasts entering our homes every day. Even our entertainment uses fear to engage our attention.

But should we allow fear to so thoroughly permeate our daily lives?

If we fear God, we have no need to let fear for our lives dominate our thinking and our actions. The Psalmist wrote:

The LORD is my light and my salvation—whom shall I fear? The LORD is the stronghold of my life—of whom shall I be afraid?
Psalm 27:1

The Bible is full of exhortations to "fear God," and of examples of God-fearing people. People who fear God know they are accountable to him, but they also know God wants only the best for those who fear him. They love God for his mercy, justice and faithfulness. The fear is not one of punishment for wrongdoing, but a healthy respect for the One who has authority and power over all. They know it is a "fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God" (Hebrews 10:31 KJV). Since those who fear God also love, trust and obey him, they have no need to be terrified of his judgment, or the judgment of others.

…love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgment, because in this world we are like him. 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.
1 John 4:17-18

Those who surround themselves with the knowledge of God's perfect love, believing in his everlasting love, love beyond the death of the mortal body, and feeling secure in his promises can be filled with the peace given by God instead of living a life of fear.

Volume 16 Issue 10 | Notes from Nancy | Women in Christ Commentary | Bible Study Guide | Abundance of the Heart | Exhortation |

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