Proper Fear

Some shrink from the thought of fearing God, but it is beautifully and rightly displayed in the Scriptures as an essential response to the King of all that is.

In Genesis 10, Ham, one of Noah’s sons, made light of his father’s shameful nakedness, while the other two, Shem and Japheth, respectfully covered it. In Ezra 9, Ezra was appalled at the gross and blatant sin of the people, and sat ashamed and pleading for mercy with those who “trembled at the words of God because of the faithlessness of the returning exiles.” In Matthew 9:8, some who witnessed Jesus’s healing of a paralytic “were afraid and glorified God.” In Acts 9:31, “The church… walking in the fear of the Lord and in the comfort of the Holy Spirit, multiplied.”

Patmos, arched church dome with Jesus at top

I must fear God over sin; He is holy and righteous, and all wickedness is an affront to Him. Thanks be to God He opens my eyes and heart to recognize and acknowledge this—as He struck Saul in the storm of his rebellion on the road to Damascus. (Acts 9:3-5) I must also fear God for His wonders, His power, and His majesty. Is there any other proper response?

“The fear of the Lord, that is wisdom.” Job 28:28

“But God, being rich in mercy, because of his great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ–by grace you have been saved.” Ephesians 2:2-5

May I fear without being afraid, boldly approaching You because of Your grace at the cross, and revere You as the only One worthy to receive glory. Lord of Lords, may I ever tremble at Your holiness, Your wide mercies, Your measureless love.

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