Friday, July 10, 2009

Fear

"The only thing we have to fear is fear it'self - nameless, unreasoning, unjustified, terror which paralyzes needed efforts to convert retreat into advance." Franklin Delano Roosevelt

Karl Marx reasoned that the greatest human motivation was fear. By using intimidation and fear you are able to force individuals into a paralysis that incapacitates them from being able to function, and conditions them to behave in a manner that is not only beneath their capabilities but also fail to even see their own potential.
The Christian is not to fall prey to this folly. Make no mistake fear is a good and Godly thing when its faculties are directed in reverence to the Lord. Scripture is clear that one cannot love God, be a Christian, or even have any wisdom if they do not fear God. There are millions and millions of very brilliant people who have been educated very well and regarded as intelligent by the world around them, who are also fools. The absence of Christ is the absence of wisdom, not practical or theoretical wisdom but true biblical wisdom. Thus fear is a good thing and a godly thing, but only when this fear is in the Lord.
We all fall prey to a number of other "sinful" fears that shroud themselves behind a veneer of humility, which in reality is truly the result of Pride and sin. Fears of failure, fears of inadequacy, fears of the future, fear of death, fear of being alone, fear of letting others down, all of these scream out our deeply ingrained pridefulness. We afraid to soil our name instead of consumed with bringing glory to God's name. We neglect to hold onto his promises, that he will give us the desires of our Heart, when we delight in him, and fail to trust that our heavenly father is working not only for his glory but our good. Often our fear is from a supposed inadequacy as if God made a mistake or could possibly need us to be just a little bit more intelligent, attractive, talented, or gifted to accomplish his good and perfect will. We replace the God of the bible and make others around us god by seeking their approval and acceptance this is called "peer pressure" in middle school and "people pleasing" in adulthood . We place God behind our own desires and wish to accomplish his will as long as it coincides with our will (ie finding our spouse, having children, living in the suburbs, and having a great church). And fail to trust him(the opposite of fear) and instead surrender over our lives to a number of other idols that were good things but when made god replacing things they became bad things.
Fear is among the greatest tools that satan uses the inhibit the gospel. But as a Christian you have not been given a spirit of Timidity (lit gk word cowardice), but of power, love and discipline-2 Tim 1:7. Therefore let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.-Hebrews 12:1-3
The sin of Fear is a subtle and incredibly disguised one. It provokes mercy from others around us, which is good. But we must also recognize that much of our sin is rooted in the fact that we are worried more about what people will think of us, than what they do think of God. Fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom... fear of others, our embarrassment, our failure, our life not being as good as we hope, all of these are sin and have no place in the Kingdom.
Thus in a sense FDR was right but in a sense very wrong. His words were meant to foster courage and encourage other not to fear, and the only thing they have to fear is being affected and influenced by fear. We are to follow a similar pattern knowing that we have nothing to fear but only to trust in our God who will provide for all our needs.


Father you are worthy of Honor, glory, respect, reverence, admiration, love, and all of our fear. Teach us to trust you knowing we walk by faith not by sight. Forgive us our trespasses of the fear of man, loneliness, and failing. You are good Jesus and we trust you...



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