My dear students. I miss you all so dearly and pray that you and your families are safe and in good health. As the title suggests I would like to have a little discussion about fear. How do we respond to it? and more importantly, what does the bible tell us?
FEAR IS A CONSEQUENCE OF SIN
One of Adam and Eve's first experiences after their fall into sin was fear (Genesis 3: 7 - 8; 10). Since then fear has plagued mankind by revealing our guilt before a holy and righteous God and proving to us our inability to save ourselves. The reality is God created us to be completely DEPENDENT on Him for provision and protection (Job 10: 12; Psalm 100: 3; Psalm 119: 73; Isaiah 42: 5) . Outside of fellowship with God we experience an overwhelming realization that we are powerless, fragile, and hopeless. Take COVID - 19 for example. One would assume that before this pandemic arose our generation would have been the most equipped to handle any threat to our society. We have revolutionary technology, we live in a thriving and powerful country, and the world's greatest minds at our disposal. Yet here we are, in the 6th month since Wuhan's initial outbreak and the 4th month into our own and the world is still scrambling to get things under control. For thousands of years people have avoided facing the truth that we are helpless when left to our own devices. Thankfully, even though we abandoned Him. He has not abandoned us. His Son, Jesus Christ, paid the ultimate price to secure our freedom from the punishment of our sin and our eternal restoration to God. What was paid for at the highest cost is now offered at the lowest price, namely, repentance and faith in Jesus.
TRUST IN GOD
One of the most repeated statements from God to us is "Do not fear". The amazing truth about this command is that He assumes full control over the situation of which He is commanding us not to fear! In other words He's telling us we are 100% provided for. We can have peace knowing that He will be with us and guide us through whatever hardship or suffering we are facing. The main reason God commands us not to fear is because it betrays in us a lack of trust in Him. We doubt He is strong enough. We doubt He really cares. We may even doubt He exists. The sad thing is that fear is what testifies in us our desperate need for God while also in many cases becoming the one thing that drives us away from Him. But Romans 8: 28 says this, "And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose". Did you catch that? "all things". Not some things. Not most things. Every single outcome in every single situation in which we place our whole trust and hope in the Lord is good. That's assurance you will never find in the world. Praise be to the Lord Jesus! That even in our lowest moment on earth. With Him. We have more than the worlds weight in gold. Here are just a few scriptures that I hope will bring you courage in times of fear and that God may use to strengthen your trust in Him.
GOD'S LOVE CONQUERS FEAR
In 1 John 4 we are told that God is love and that His love casts out fear. Likewise in 2 Timothy 1: 7 we are told that God has not given us a spirit of fear but of power, love and self control. Jesus told His disciples that He would send them another Helper, the Holy Spirit (John 14: 15-17). This is a promise to all those who call on the name of the Lord in repentance and commit their life to Him.
HELP THOSE IN NEED
Far too often our fear places us in a "self preservation" mode. Unfortunately this could not be more evident then right now. People panic and begin turning on their neighbors, buying gross amounts of unnecessary products or groceries and obsessing over the news and how badly this is all going to effect them while loosing all semblance of care for how other people are being effected. The more that fear can seed itself into our heart and mind, the more power it has over our life. Finding ways to reach out to others, communicate through virtual or social means to provide comfort or encouragement and giving of yourself to meet other people's needs is a very efficient way of breaking the hold of fear on your life. Proverbs 11: 25 says "A generous person will prosper; whoever refreshes others will be refreshed".
RECEIVE GOD'S GIFT OF GRACE
Finally my loved ones, nothing could be more important in this discussion than this. Everything that you have read is MEANINGLESS without a relationship with God. That is why I am encouraging you. Right now. If you have not placed your faith in Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior that you do so. Right now. He loves you. He died for you. And He wants to walk with you through all your troubles and triumphs. If you are ready to receive the Lord Jesus into your heart than you need only do 4 things.
1. Confess that Jesus is the Son of God. God in the flesh. And believe that He did indeed die and rise again from the dead for the sins of the world.
2. Repent of your sin. This means that you change your mind in regards to how you view the things that displease God and go against His commandments. We agree with God that those things in His word which He says are sin. Are in fact sin.
3. Ask the Lord Jesus to forgive you of your life of sin.
4. Commit your life to following Him.
For those that have done these things I am overjoyed in my heart to welcome you as a brother or sister in Christ. You have the Spirit of the living God in you and adoption into His family! Please understand that our ministry is here for you and would love for you to reach out to us for help finding a church or questions on what's next for your new life in Christ. REJOICE AND PRAISE THE LORD FOR HIS AMAZING GRACE AND MERCY!
Now may the Lord bless you and keep you, make His face to shine upon you and be gracious unto you, may the Lord look upon you with favor and give you peace. I look forward to seeing you all hopefully in the fall!