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What Are You Afraid
by Milford Bowen
is sand in the machinery of life." What is the sand in the machinery of your
life? Natural man is full of fear. Without God in his life he should be
fearful. Not only that, but many believers still have not conquered fear in
Fear was introduced
into the world in the Garden of Eden. Adam and Eve had rebelled against God.
"And they heard the voice of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool
of the day: and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the
LORD God amongst the trees of the garden. And the LORD God called unto Adam,
and said unto him, Where art thou? And he said, I heard thy voice in the
garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked; and I hid myself." (Genesis
8-10). Fear entered when rebellion and sin entered into the heart of the man
and the woman.
Fear is an emotion
which is a part of our natural make up, because we are born in sin, at odds
with God. This emotion is caused by awareness and anticipation of perceived
impending danger, that may or may not threaten life. It causes dread, panic
and lack of courage.
As a sons of God,
born again of God's spirit, we have no reason, and no right, to fear
anything. Fear in the life of the believer is an act of unbelief, cowardice,
and a lack of trusting God.
The word "fear" is
sometimes used in the Bible to refer to awe and reverence of God. "Let us
hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep his
commandments: for this is the whole duty of man" (Ecclesiates 12:13). This
is not the kind of fear which is of lack of trusting God.
To avoid fear in
our life we have to trust God. "In God I will praise his word, in God I have
put my trust; I will not fear what flesh can do unto me." (Psalm 56:4).
"Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I
will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with
the right hand of my righteousness." (Isaiah 41:10).
Through the years
there have been men and women who have conquered fear by trusting God. "And
Joshua said unto them, Fear not, nor be dismayed, be strong and of good
courage: for thus shall the LORD do to all your enemies against whom ye
fight." (Joshua 10:25).
In the New
Testament Paul said that God is not the author of fear. "For God hath not
given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind"
(II Timothy 1:7). If God is not the author of fear, who do you suppose the
author of it is? None other than the great deceiver and manipulator, Satan.
In John 9
there is a record of Jesus healing a man who was blind from birth. The
religious leaders questioned the parents of this man about how he was
healed. In verse 19: "And they asked them, saying, Is this your son, who ye
say was born blind? how then doth he now see?" What was their answer? They
didn't even stand by their son in his time of need for their support.
Verse 21 is their
response. "But by what means he now seeth, we know not; or who hath opened
his eyes, we know not: he is of age; ask him: he shall speak for himself."
Verse 22 tells why they did not come forth with the support he needed.
"These words spake his parents, because they feared the Jews: for the Jews
had agreed already, that if any man did confess that he was Christ, he
should be put out of the synagogue." The Jews had already said that if
anyone said Jesus was the Christ he would be put out of the synagogue.
They were afraid
of the being kicked out of their synagogue. This was a serious and
life-threatening matter. When a person was ostracized from the synagogue,
people would not talk with him. Merchants would not deal with him. He was
left out in the cold. It's no wonder they were fearful.
How do you get rid
of fear in your life? The answer lies in I John 4:18: "There is no fear in
love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that
feareth is not made perfect in love." Perfect love is love that is complete,
safe, peaceful, perfect, whole, full, finished, and without fear. There is
no place in perfect love for anticipation of perceived impending
Are you fearful
about confessing your belief in God to your fellow-workers, or classmates?
How about being afraid of what your neighbors might think or do? Maybe you
think you might get sick, and fear the outcome. Is your job secure? What if
the IRS audits your records? Will you have enough money to pay the heating
bill, or the rent? Each one of us has certain fears to confront and go to
God to exchange it for perfect love.
God has promised
He would take care of every need, even in seemingly impossible situations.
"But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by
Christ Jesus." (Philippians 4:19). The unfathomable riches of Christ Jesus
certainly can cover any and all of our needs.
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