Summary: Faith overcomes Fear. Fear is of the devil. Faith comes from the Lord and the Word of God. All things are possible to those who will believe.

Faith Overcomes Fear

Main Thought: Fear subtracts from life, but Faith expands who we are and what we can do.

Mark 9:23-24

23 “‘If you can’?”said Jesus.“Everything is possible for one who believes.” 24 Immediately the boy’s father exclaimed,

“I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!”

It is God’s will that we are filled with ALL joy and ALL peace as we trust in God, FOR THE PURPOSE OF overflowing with HOPE and this can only happen by the power of the Holy Spirit.

Because of Jesus Christ we have the riches of heaven promised to us, but many times fear will stop us from living in the abundant life that Jesus Promised to us.

I am reminded of the story of the Mother who was very concerned for the safety of her children while the were going to school. The school was located in an area of the city where the drivers did not heed the school zone speed limit. Because the police were not taking action, this mother decided to take matters into her own hands.

She decided that she would put the fear of a speeding ticket in the speeding drivers going past a local elementary school. Every morning she would park her car in front of the elementary school and point her black hair dryer - shaped like a radar gun, out of the window at speeding cars. The effect was dramatic as drivers slowed down fearing they might receive a speeding ticket.

You see fear is a very influential thing. It can cause drivers to slow down for fear of a ticket, and it can cause you and I to grind our lives to a stop for any number of fears.

Here are some of the effects that fear can have on your life.

• Experience lack of enthusiasm. (Life just isn’t exciting and purposeful anymore)

• All we can think about is what we fear.)

• Keeps us from interacting with others. (All we want to do is be alone and deal with it by ourselves.)

• Keeps us from getting anything done. (All we are consumed with is the fear.)

• Eventually turns into wrong behavior.

• Causes health problems. (This fear & anxiety puts a tremendous strain on our bodies. Causes abdominal trouble, tension of the muscles, pressure in the head.)

• Chips away at our intimacy with God. (We see God as having caused this. We see him as being mean to us.)

But the Bible says He will fill us with joy and peace. 13 May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.

Faith expands who we are and what we can do.Fear subtracts from life

How do we Overcome Fear with Faith?


Two gas company service men, a senior training Supervisor and a young trainee were out checking meters and parked their truck at the end of the alley and worked there way to the other end. At the last house a woman looking out her kitchen window watched the two men as they checked her gas meter. As they finished the meter check the older supervisor challenged his younger co-worker to a foot race down the alley back to the truck. As they came running up to the truck, they realized that the lady from the last house was huffing and puffing right behind them. They stopped and asked her what was wrong. Gasping for breath she said, "When I see two gas men running full speed away from my house, I figured I had better run too."

This lady had evaluated the situation, she had seen what was going on with her own two eyes, and she made the decision to run.

Friends, there is significant difference between Reacting and Responding.

• Reacting makes a knee jerk decision.

• Reacting is usually a very swift action, and in many times it is accompanied and influenced by intense emotions.

• Reacting does not check for accuracy.

• Reacting can make sense at the time, but often in hindsight a better solution can be found.

On the other hand, responding allows us to gain a better perspective and a wiser decision.

Listen to this story of how two young girls were able to respond rather than react to a chaotic situation.

Rebecca and Abigail Bates lived on the coast of Massachusetts, near a little village named Scituate. Their father was the keeper of the lighthouse, which stood at the entrance of the harbor and warned ships away from the rocky coast. One day Rebecca and Abigail were up in the tower, polishing the great glass that sent the light far over the sea. Their father and mother had rowed across the bay to the village, leaving the lighthouse in their daughters’ care. As they polished away with all their might, they noticed a strange ship creeping around a point. It stopped and lowered two little boats, which turned and started toward land. At that time people feared every ship they did not know, for the year was 1814 and America and England were at war. British ships often sailed right into harbors and sent their soldiers ashore to attack the villages. The British had already made one raid on Scituate’s harbor, and had burned ten vessels before putting back to sea. Now Rebecca and Abigail stood frozen in the lighthouse, peering down and holding their breath while they waited to see what these two strange boats would do. Closer and closer they crept, until finally they entered the harbor. They were full of British soldiers! The girls looked along the shore. No help was to be seen. What could they do? If they could only warn the townspeople! But they had no boat, and there would be no time to run to the village, for it was a long way around the bay. Rebecca grabbed her sister by the sleeve. "Listen, Abigail," she cried. "Here’s what we two girls are going to do." And she began whispering into her ear, as if the British might hear her plan as they rowed swiftly across the water. The sisters raced down the winding staircase and across the lawn to their house. Abigail snatched up a drum, which her father had brought home to mend just the other day. Rebecca grabbed a fife, and they slipped out of the house toward the beach, crouching behind bushes and sandhills to keep out of sight. The British boats were now quite close, and the soldiers were preparing to leap ashore. Suddenly the order was given to halt. The soldiers listened closely. From behind a clump of cedar trees came the beating of a drum, and then the squeak of a fife. It was not skillful, but it was loud and clear -- the strains of "Yankee Doodle" floated over the sands. "The militia has seen us coming!" cried the British soldiers. "They will attack us as soon as we land!" They turned their boats around and rowed for their lives, back to their ship. A moment later the villagers spotted the British boats. They raised a great alarm, and all hurried toward the lighthouse. When they reached the point, they found only Rebecca and Abigail Bates, sitting on a rock, watching a faraway ship put to sea. A drum and fife lay beside them. The "American Army of Two" had won the day.

In life it is easy to see the signs of the time and start running away at full speed, but that doesn’t mean it makes sense.

We cannot afford to PANIC OR AFRAID

In the midst of a worldwide economic crisis, people aren’t looking for answers from people who are reacting. THEY What . And who better than the Church to emerge as a calm and confident leader.

I also need to point out that it is almost always from a point of Crisis in the world that new leadership and economics are formed. We need to step, be a part of the solution and solidify the Church as Leaders in our world.


A second principle to overcoming fear is to


If you have ever heard the story of Achan in the Bible you understand why sin leads to fear.

Achan was part of the Israelite army that marched against Jericho. God had told them that he would give them the city, all that they would have to do was march around it once a day for a week, 7 times on the seventh day, and yell and give God the glory. The marched and they yelled and the walls of Jericho came tumbling down, the army rushed in, and Jericho was handily defeated.

God’s command to the Isrealite army though was that Jericho was supposed to be an offering to God. The silver and the gold were to be taken for God’s treasury and everything else was to be burned to the ground.

But Achan disobeyed God’s command. He took some Gold, he took some silver, and he took a designer coat, and he hid them in his tent. And for all accounts and purposes it looked like he had gotten away with it. Nobody knew what he had done, and it seemed as if God hadn’t even taken note of Achan’s sin.

But the thing with God is that he is omnipotent, and omnipresent. He’s everywhere and he sees everything, and he saw Achan’s disobedience. You can fool man but there is no way that you will ever fool God.

Joshua, the commander of the Isrealite army has no idea about Achan’s sin. He sends spies out to the village of Ai, and they return saying that it is a shoe-in to win. In fact, it will be so easy that they might as well just leave some of the army at home to get some rest.

Joshua sends the army to Ai, to fight an easy battle, and to everyone’s surprise the army is routed. They hightail it back from camp, and on the way 36 of them are shot down with the sword and the arrow.

The defeat is so surprising, and so unpredictable, that the Isrealite army loses their confidence in God. They start questioning God and each other, wondering how such a thing could have happened.

Joshua falls on his face before God, crying out for an answer. God says this to Joshua, “Get up. Why are you groveling? Israel has sinned: They’ve broken the covenant I commanded them; they’ve taken forbidden plunder – stolen and then covered up the theft, squirreling it away with their own stuff. The people of Israel can non longer look their enemies in the eye – they themselves are plunder. I can’t continue with you if you don’t rid yourself of this cursed thing.” –Joshua 7:10-12

Early the next morning Joshua sets about finding who committed the sin. He is able to isolate the right tribe, the right clan, and finally the right family.

Achan, did you sin? Yes.

And Joshua eliminate the sin that day. Achan, the things that he stole, his wife, his children, his possession, all of it, were taken to the Valley of Troubles, and stoned to death.

And from then on, as long as their was no sin, Isreal went from victory to victory, just as dominant as they had been before.

Well, aren’t you glad that you don’t live in those times, when stoning was an option. I mean, if that is the way that your hidden sins were dealt with today I don’t think that there would be too many of us sinning.

That is the effect of sin though, it leads to defeat, and it leads to fear. When there is sin in your life you don’t have the confidence and the character to deal with troubled times.

Achan died for his sins, but Jesus died for yours.

The Bible also says, “If we say we have no sin, we are only fooling ourselves and refusing to accept the truth. 9 But if we confess our sins to him, he is faithful and just to forgive us and to cleanse us from every wrong.”

1 John 1:8-9 (NLT)

But God proves his love for us in that while we still were sinners Christ died for us.Romans 5:8 (NRSV)

If you want to overcome fear with faith, you start by putting your faith in Jesus Christ who is able to save you from your sin. You confess your sins to God, and if you really want to deal with them, you confess your sins to man. And God is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and purify us from every one.

Fear subtracts from life, but Faith expands who we are and what we can do.

A third key to overcoming fear with faith is…


Psychologists tell us that there are only 2 fears in the world that come naturally; The fear of falling and the fear of loud noises.

Many times you will find people who are running from something they fear, and it is just chaos and worry and doubt all bundled up into one big glob.

Jerusalem had just been taken captive by the Babylonian Empire. There were some remaining survivors, one of whom was the prophet Jeremiah.

The survivors were in a small state of panic, worry and fear were controlling their emotions. Many of them wanted to run to Egypt and fall under the protection of the Pharaoh. They were scared that the Babylonians would come back and that this time they would not be spared.

These survivors came to Jeremiah and asked for a word from God. Here is what God said to them through his prophet, “If you are ready to stick it out in this land, I will build you up and not drag you down, I will plant you and not pull you up like a weed. I feel deep compassion on account of the doom I have visited on you. You don’t have to fear the king of Babylon. Your fears are for nothing. I’m on your side, read y to save and deliver you from anything he might do. I’ll pour mercy on your. What’s more, he will show you mercy! He’ll let you come back to your very own land.” (Jeremiah 42:9-12)

Here is what God is saying to us today. If you are in the place that God has planted you, if you are standing firm on the foundation of Jesus Christ, then there is no need to go running to someone or something else for your protection. You will be planted, and not pulled up like a weed. God is on your side, ready to save and deliver you from any problem that the devil, the economy or devious people might through out you.

I hope that we can respond instead of reacting, which is unfortunately what the survivors determined to do. And the sad thing is that no sooner had they moved to Egypt than the Babylonians came and conquered Egypt as well.

Because they had reacted to their fears instead of responding in Faith to God’s word, they were forced to live through another war.

How many wars and battles are you going to live through before you will take God at His word. How many times are you going to run to the solutions that you hope will save you, instead of standing firm in the truths and the promises of God.

God’s words are these:

2 Timothy 1:7-9 (NIV)

7 For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline.

Philippians 4:13 (NIV)

13 I can do everything through him who gives me strength.

Fear subtracts from life, but Faith expands who we are and what we can do.

You know; Integrity is proven on the mountain top, who are you when the world is at your finger tips and no one is asking for the details. But faith is proven in the valley. Faith is proven when you have to go through some tough times with tough decisions, it is proved when you are in the pressure cooker situations of life.

I pray that you will be able to overcome your fears by




Mark 9:23-24 "Mark 9:23-24

23 “‘If you can’?”said Jesus.“Everything is possible for one who believes.” 24 Immediately the boy’s father exclaimed,

“I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!”

Portions of this sermon have be gathered from several sources.