FEARING OR BEING AFRAID OF GOD?
Matthew 11:28-29 “Come to me, all who are tired from carrying heavy loads, and I will give you rest. Place my yoke over your shoulders, and learn from me, because I am gentle and humble. Then you will find rest for yourselves because my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” James 4:4 “You unfaithful people! Don’t you know that love for this evil world is hatred toward God? Whoever wants to be a friend of this world is an enemy of God.“
PRE-AMBLE by Robert
Here we are today busy caring for our lives, and families, enjoying all the new technology has to offer. Is it wrong? Does it draw us away from God?
When I read the opening scriptures, they brought many thoughts to mind concerning my personal walk with Yeshua, as I pray it will with yours. In a previously published article “Under His Thumb” I related the Lord was showing, my walk was out of sorts. I was unwittingly slipping back to being worldly, thinking worldly, writing worldly. He was revealing there was a desire to again be a part of its temptations in my heart. Caused by the fact I was being afraid of God rather than fearing him.
OPENING COMMENTS by Robert
Love to God seems here to be recommended on these accounts: –
- It will give us peace and satisfaction of spirit in the day when it will be most needed, or when it will be the greatest pleasure and blessing imaginable: Herein is our love made perfect, that we may have boldness in the day of judgment, 1 John 4:17.
There must be a day of universal judgment. Happy they who shall have holy fiducial boldness before the Judge at that day, who shall be able to lift up their heads, and to look him in the face, as knowing he is their friend and advocate! Happy they who have holy boldness and assurance in the prospect of that day, who look and wait for it, and for the Judge’s appearance!
So, do, and so may do, the lovers of God. Their love to God assures them of God’s love to them, and consequently of the friendship of the Son of God; the more we love our friend, especially when we are sure that he knows it, the more we can trust his love.
As God is good and loving, and faithful to his promise, so we can easily be persuaded of his love, and the happy fruits of his love, when we can say, thou that knows all things knows that we love thee. And hope makes not ashamed; our hope, conceived by the consideration of God’s love, will not disappoint us, because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost that is given to us, Romans 5:5.
Possibly here by the love of God may be meant our love to God, which is shed abroad upon our hearts by the Holy Ghost; this is the foundation of our hope, or of our assurance that our hope will hold good at last. Or, if by the love of God be meant the sense and apprehension of his love to us, yet this must suppose or include us as lovers of him in this case.
And indeed, the sense and evidence of his love to us do shed abroad upon our hearts love to him; and thereupon we have confidence towards him and peace and joy in him.
He will give the crown of righteousness to all that love his appearing. And we have this boldness towards Christ because of our conformity to him: Because as he is, so are we in this world, 1 John 4:17.
Love hath conformed us to Yeshua; as he was the great lover of God and man, he has taught us in our measure to be so too, and he will not deny his own image.
Love teaches us to conform in sufferings too; we suffer for him and with him, and therefore cannot but hope and trust that we shall also be glorified together with him, 2Tim. 2:12.
It prevents or removes the uncomfortable result and fruit of menial, slavish fear: There is no fear in love (1 John 4:18); so far as love prevails, fear ceases.
Here, we must distinguish, between fear and being afraid; or, in this case, between the fear of God and being afraid of him. The fear of God is often mentioned and commanded as the substance of religion (1 Peter 2:17; Revelation 14:7); and so, it imports the high regard and veneration we have for God and his authority and government.
Such fear is constant with love, yea, with perfect love, as being in the angels themselves. But then, there is being afraid of God, which arises from a sense of guilt, and a view of his vindictive perfections. In the view of them, God is represented as a consuming fire; and so, the fear here may be rendered dread.
There is no dread in love. Love considers its object as good and excellent, and therefore amiable, and worthy to be beloved. Love considers God as most eminently good, and most eminently loving us in Christ, and so puts off dread, and puts on joy in him; and, as love grows, joy grows too; so that perfect love casts out fear or dread.
Those who perfectly love God are, from his nature, and counsel, and covenant, perfectly assured of his love, and consequently are perfectly free from any dismal dreadful suspicions of his punitive power and justice, as armed against them.
They well know that God loves them, and they thereupon triumph in his love.
That perfect love casts out fear the apostle thus sensibly argues: that which castes out torment castes out fear or dread: Because fear hath torment (1 John 4:18) – fear is known to be a disquieting torturing passion, especially such fear as is the dread of an almighty avenging God; but perfect love casts out torment, for it teaches the mind a perfect acquiescence and complacency in the beloved, and therefore perfect love casts out fear.
Or, which is here equivalent, he that feareth is not made perfect in love (1 John 4:18).
It is a sign that our love is far from being perfect, since our doubts, and fears, and dismal apprehensions of God, are so many. Let us long for, and hasten to, the position of perfect love, where our serenity and joy in God will be as perfect as our love!
- From the source and rise of it, which is the antecedent love of God: We love him, because he first loved us, 1 John 4:19.
His love is the incentive, the motive, and the moral cause of ours. We cannot but love so good a God, who was first in the act and work of love, who loved us when we were both unloving and unlovely, who loved us at so great a rate, who has been seeking and soliciting our love at the expense of his Son’s blood; and has condescended to beseech us to be reconciled unto him.
Let heaven and earth stand amazed at such love! His love is the productive cause of ours: Of his own will (of his own free loving will) begat He us. To those that love him all things work together for good, to those who are, the called according to his purpose?
Those that love God are the called thereto according to his purpose (Romans 8:28); according to whose purpose they are called is sufficiently intimated in the following clauses: whom he did predestinate (or antecedently purpose, to the image of his Son) those he also called, effectually recovered thereto.
The divine love stamped love upon our souls; may the Lord still and further direct our hearts into the love of God! 2 Thessalonians 3:5.
Know this our heavenly Father is a loving and chaste God who we must hold a Godly fear of, not being afraid of what He can do, as so many who hold worldly fear in their hearts and unwittingly step away from God’s binding love.
My closing question again if you claim to abide in God, then why is there worldly fear in your lives?
Perhaps, there is one foot in the world and one supposedly in the spiritual. Or maybe seeing God as a 7/11 convenience to answer our prayers and fix those things we worldly fear and are tormented but don’t understand why?
Or, wonder why so many fleshly temples are being destroyed? 1 Corinthians 3:17 KJVS, If any man defiles the temple of God, he shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple are ye. Or why serious maladies are operating in the world?
Or, possibly question why the promises in Psalms 91:9-16 don’t apply in many cases Psalms 91:1 He that dwelleth in the secret place of the Most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty, or other promises in the scriptures are not applied. Why prayers are not being answered? Check this link
Again please remember this is just a humble servant doing the bidding of the LORD I pray for a safe journey forward. A walk-in God’s love and peace, and may the “SHARING OF YOUR LIGHT” be fruitful, remember He is always with you if you hold His love in your heart forever.