The Fear of the Lord.
We are living in a wicked and perverse generation, as people have no reverence to God at all. Even many so called Christians take God only in the aspect of a Son of man – Jesus and not as the God the almighty. They take Jesus as their buddy where he will compromise in everything what they do but not the awesome majestic God who never compromise with sin. Due to this there is no true fear of God.
Mal 1:6 A son honoureth his father, and a servant his master: if then I be a father, where is mine honour? and if I be a master, where is my fear? saith the LORD of hosts unto you…..
Note, father and a master both have authority. Whenever there is authority there is honor and reverence. There is no reverence to God in today’s society as many do not believe the authority of God and therefore sadly God has no honor. When you say God has no authority then it is substituted with man’s authority, humanism. The result is man’s opinions and we see the pro-abortion, pro-gay, taking the 10 commandments out of public places, sexual immorality, violence, disobedience and all in all the decline of a nation. We need to go to the basic and proclaim to this world the true living God.
Pr The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom: and the knowledge of the holy is understanding.
Ps 128:1 Blessed is every one that feareth the LORD; that walketh in his ways.
Ec Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man.
Re 14:7 Saying with a loud voice, Fear God, and give glory to him; for the hour of his judgment is come: and worship him that made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters.
He is the true living Creator God. He is the majestic, infinitely Holy glorious God that the entire universe is held together and operates every second by his omnipotent power. All the nations are just a drop in the bucket as we are just dust before his awesome glory and power. His eyes are upon everyone, a bird cannot fall to the ground without his knowledge and before him all our hairs are numbered.
Our souls are created by him and either he can be our Savior or the Judge. We need to take the word of God very seriously and give earnest attention as we learn and grow and to obey him.
Heb 12:28 Wherefore we receiving a kingdom which cannot be moved, let us have grace, whereby we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear.
Let us take the word fear in the word of God and see it’s concept and the true meaning in the light of his word.
The object of our fear is God himself. It is the word of God that gives us understanding of this fear.
Today we are living in a society that people have no fear of God at all. They openly sin against God; God is mocked, made fun, why? Because they have no understanding of the true living God. On the other hand the true Christian who has a true understanding of the living God does not live like the unbelievers, as he is fearful not to offend God.
God can be called the fear of his people. Not because he is the object of that fear but also because there is an awesome majesty in him, in that awesome majesty he is great and terrible. You will find in the word God is great and terrible. The word terrible in Hebrew (yare) context means stand in awe with great honor of reverence.
Ne 1:5 And said, I beseech thee, O LORD God of heaven, the great and terrible God, that keepeth covenant and mercy for them that love him and observe his commandments.
Ne 4:14 And I looked, and rose up, and said unto the nobles, and to the rulers, and to the rest of the people, Be not ye afraid of them: remember the Lord, which is great and terrible, and fight for your brethren, your sons, and your daughters, your wives, and your houses.
Ne 9:32 Now therefore, our God, the great, the mighty, and the terrible God, who keepest covenant and mercy, let not all the trouble seem little before thee, that hath come upon us, on our kings, on our princes, and on our priests, and on our prophets, and on our fathers, and on all thy people, since the time of the kings of Assyria unto this day.
Job 37:22 Fair weather cometh out of the north: with God is terrible majesty.
Na 1:5 The mountains quake at him, and the hills melt, and the earth is burned at his presence, yea, the world, and all that dwell therein.
6 Who can stand before his indignation? and who can abide in the fierceness of his anger? his fury is poured out like fire, and the rocks are thrown down by him.
Isa 8:13 Sanctify the LORD of hosts himself; and let him be your fear, and let him be your dread.
Let us dig deeper and contemplate of the above scriptures and we see that the presence of God is dreadful. When God brings salvation to the poor sinner it is a so comfortable and joyous but even in that there is a fear to his awesome majestic name we should not take it lightly.
Read Genesis 28:10-17
Ge 28:10 And Jacob went out from Beersheba, and went toward Haran.
11 And he lighted upon a certain place, and tarried there all night, because the sun was set; and he took of the stones of that place, and put them for his pillows, and lay down in that place to sleep.
12 And he dreamed, and behold a ladder set up on the earth, and the top of it reached to heaven: and behold the angels of God ascending and descending on it.
13 And, behold, the LORD stood above it, and said, I am the LORD God of Abraham thy father, and the God of Isaac: the land whereon thou liest, to thee will I give it, and to thy seed;
14 And thy seed shall be as the dust of the earth, and thou shalt spread abroad to the west, and to the east, and to the north, and to the south: and in thee and in thy seed shall all the families of the earth be blessed.
15 And, behold, I am with thee, and will keep thee in all places whither thou goest, and will bring thee again into this land; for I will not leave thee, until I have done that which I have spoken to thee of.
16 And Jacob awaked out of his sleep, and he said, Surely the LORD is in this place; and I knew it not.
17 And he was afraid, and said, How dreadful is this place! this is none other but the house of God, and this is the gate of heaven.
Man crumbles into dust before the awesome presence of God. When holy angels appeared to men they were fearful, as the angel told Mary, fear not. Angels are just creatures of God. How much more the presence of God? We realize that we are just dust and ashes!
Although there is a fear of God’s presence to the believers, it is a merciful and a gracious appearance.
Da 10:16 And, behold, one like the similitude of the sons of men touched my lips: then I opened my mouth, and spake, and said unto him that stood before me, O my lord, by the vision my sorrows are turned upon me, and I have retained no strength.
17 For how can the servant of this my lord talk with this my lord? for as for me, straightway there remained no strength in me, neither is there breath left in me.
If there is a fear of God’s presence to the believers how much more to the unbelievers who offend God daily?
There are three things that are important in his presence.
1. God’s own greatness and majesty. When we see our mortal flesh crumbles before his power. We die at the presence of his great power and majesty.
Re 1:17 And when I saw him, I fell at his feet as dead. And he laid his right hand upon me, saying unto me, Fear not; I am the first and the last.
The presence of the eternal King of the universe is dreadful.
2. The presence of God shows how weak and sinful we are. Our righteousness and goodness turns into a filthy rag in the presence of God. It shows our polluted nature.
Isa 6:1 In the year that king Uzziah died I saw also the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up, and his train filled the temple.
2 Above it stood the seraphims: each one had six wings; with twain he covered his face, and with twain he covered his feet, and with twain he did fly.
3 And one cried unto another, and said, Holy, holy, holy, is the LORD of hosts: the whole earth is full of his glory.
4 And the posts of the door moved at the voice of him that cried, and the house was filled with smoke.
5 Then said I, Woe is me! for I am undone; because I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips: for mine eyes have seen the King, the LORD of hosts.
3. When God shows his mercy to a poor defiled sinner like us we see in God’s greatness his goodness.
Ho 3:5 Afterward shall the children of Israel return, and seek the LORD their God, and David their king; and shall fear the LORD and his goodness in the latter days.
We see here an awful reverence to God as it is the undeserving sinner instead of judgment of God there is grace, mercy and love, this is God’s goodness.
Jer 5:22 Fear ye not me? saith the LORD: will ye not tremble at my presence, which have placed the sand for the bound of the sea by a perpetual decree, that it cannot pass it: and though the waves thereof toss themselves, yet can they not prevail; though they roar, yet can they not pass over it?
Here we see to the true Christian God is not a monster type figure to be fearful but an awesome holy God, a Father to a son that we need to have full reverence to his authority. Even when the high roaring sea is obedient to God’s word how much more the Christian who is called a child of God.
(Example of Jesus calming the storm)
Even in the midst of severe trouble, when God showed his power and authority to Job, Job saw the goodness of God when he said;
Job 42:5 I have heard of thee by the hearing of the ear: but now mine eye seeth thee.
6 Wherefore I abhor myself, and repent in dust and ashes.
When a man’s heart is shaken by the word of God, when his heart is trembled and broken as they see the terrible majesty of God there is forgiveness to the sinner. Then God will speak to the sinner and the believing sinner will see the glorious discoveries of his Savior.
Jer 33:8 And I will cleanse them from all their iniquity, whereby they have sinned against me; and I will pardon all their iniquities, whereby they have sinned, and whereby they have transgressed against me.
9 And it shall be to me a name of joy, a praise and an honour before all the nations of the earth, which shall hear all the good that I do unto them: and they shall fear and tremble for all the goodness and for all the prosperity that I procure unto it.
True fear of the Lord is the most humbling and heart breaking sight in the world.