Do not be afraid
These words, or in modern translation, do not be afraid, are found in over 300 verses in the Bible. From the very moment that our first parents disobeyed, they experienced fear. It was evidenced by hiding from God. Up to that moment they had actually walked with the living God. They spoke with him and they were in an abiding relationship. The moment sin entered, fear rushed in. What happened to open this door? They, like we many times, found themselves in charge of their own life without God’s help.
What do we fear? The dark, physical, and financial issues, loss of job, death, many issues in daily living. Even as believers, we are like the first parents. You know God, but you are not trusting God. We study the Scriptures, but we’re not making them a part of our walk. We know them but we don’t trust them. Therefore, fear takes over because it has no eyes of faith. A believer must walk by faith and not by sight. When we rely on our sight, we can’t see around the next turn. Therefore, fear sets in because, quite frankly, we are afraid of what might be around the next turn.
Fear of the Lord
The ’fear of the Lord’ is different. It is reverence, deep respect, and awe for God’s power and authority. This ‘fear’ of God casts out human fear. When we know that nothing can harm us, not even death, then we can walk boldly, fearlessly, faithfully. It’s not walking blindly, it’s trusting in the truth and promises from God. We believe that he has our back, that he has only the best in store for us, and that he actually wants, desires, that relationship. Why else would he have sacrificed his only begotten Son?