Fear as we know it is a natural human response to a perceived threat; however it is also a SPIRITUAL CONDITION we encounter from feeling alone and disconnected from God. Remember when Adam said “I was afraid” in the Garden of Eden and went to run and hide from God? He was afraid of what God might do to him for being disobedient.
Should we not obey God simply out of love for him rather than fear of what he will do to us if we don’t? The wrong kind of fear is saying “I am afraid of God” because God’s plan for us was not to fear. This kind of fear is never God. EVER!!! Every good and perfect thing comes from God (James 1:17). Since he hasn’t given us the spirit of fear we can stop trying to figure out if our fear is of God. There is a “fear of God.” which is commanded in the Bible, but which has nothing to do with “being afraid of God.” The proper “fear of God” is reverence for him which means to ascribe to him the value and honor he deserves. God is love, and there is no fear in love, therefore we should not be afraid of God rather we should fear Him.
Now that we know God is not out to punish us but to save and redeem us, we can discuss fear in our everyday lives. As Christians we are faced with new obstacles, difficult situations, and temptations every single day. Being unsure of how to handle these different situations can cause us to develop fears towards life’s most common issues and can keep us from receiving our blessings from God. Fear of rejection, failure, uncertainty, will cause us to become prisoners of our own thoughts, and minds. God promises he will never leave us nor abandon us (Joshua 1:5). Joshua was called to lead a nation into uncharted territory in the battle of Jericho (Joshua 6:1-27), and Gideon conquered an entire country with a camp of only 300 men chosen by God (Judges 7:17-22). God can do anything but fail. With God’s direction we can conquer any challenge life throws our way. Why fear things of this world that can’t cause you any eternal harm? Fear God who can turn that harm intended by others into good for those who trust and believe in him.
Have you ever noticed how dogs can sense if you’re afraid of them? This same principal applies with Satan. He knows when we let our fears get the best of us and when our faith is starting to waver even a little bit. The enemy will always try to use it against us in our lives. Isaiah 41:10 states “…do not fear for I am with you; do not be dismayed for I am your God.” God gives us assurance of his strength, help and victory over the enemy; over everything so we don’t have to fear. Once we know this and believe this in our hearts, fear will have less and less impact upon us; we will be less and less be moved by it, for we will know the truth (Proverbs 29:25).
In our walk to be more like Christ, God will call us to do something we have never done, go somewhere we have never been, and attempt to complete a task we would never in a million years see ourselves being able to accomplish. Any new task can be frightening, but with God it can be an adventure and result in a testimony to share with others. Psalm 23:4 states “Yea though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for God is with me…” He assures us again that no matter what, even when things seem at their worst, we must believe and trust that God is still in control over everything. “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 27:1-3). Face your fear head on, stay grounded in God, and his promises, work your faith and victory will come when you hold on to that ground.