Summary: Fears are common - we all have them - but do we take them to the Lord?
1. “I’m afraid Daddy”. Those were the words of my daughter not too long ago. Really it happens every now and then.
• A noise or a sound startles her so she walks across the house to our bedroom and then startles me. That’s just how it GOES EH?
• She’s there staring at me until my eyes open and then sweetly says… Daddy, I’m afraid! – Oh honey, tell your mom! NO!
• She was afraid and she responded to it.
2. Fears are common.
3. We all have them & we all respond differently
• Some responses are rational and healthy.
• Others are irrational & unhealthy.
• So many live in fear, Christians and non-Christians alike.
Many years ago Time Magazine had a cover article on “FEAR” • It talked about all the things people are afraid of in life. We all know people who have a fear of Heights, small spaces and Flying. • But this article says people have Phobias for just about everything imaginable!. This article said over 50 million people in the US have some kind of Fear or “Phobia”
There’s kathisophobia, fear of sitting. Ablutophobia: fear of bathing. Dentophobia: ... Dentists. Cyclophobia: ... Bicycles. They get even Wierder (I’m not making these up!) • Alektorophobia: ... Chickens • Arachibutyrophobia: ... Peanut butter sticking to roof of mouth Arithmophobia: ... Numbers Francophobia: ... France Automatonophobia: ... Ventriloquist dummies• Ecclesiophobia: ... Church • Hadephobia: ... HELL Ouranophobia: ... HEAVEN. And my personal favorite, Phobophobia: ... The fear of “Phobias”
• There are a lot of fears out there & a lot of fear in here.
• So it shouldn’t surprise us that we’re encouraged to “FEAR NOT”
• 8 Times in the Bible that phrase appears.
NOTE: the first time we read of the phrase “Fear Not” is from an angel of God to Hagar in Genesis 21:17.
• She’s involved in a mess with Abram & his wife and she runs away but an angel meets her with a message from God!
Genesis 21.17-18 And God heard the voice of the lad. Then the angel of God called to Hagar out of heaven, and said to her, "What ails you, Hagar? Fear not, for God has heard the voice of the lad where he is. 18 "Arise, lift up the lad and hold him with your hand, for I will make him a great nation."
• At least 7 More times that phrase is used… FEAR NOT.
• Notice with me Isaiah 41:10.
NOTE: So many fears: The PAST haunts us. PRESENT overwhelms us. FUTURE is unknown! And Jesus says to us…
John 14.1-3 "Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me. 2 "In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. 3 "And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also.
APP: If this morning there are things that trouble you. You’re fearful. You’re worried. You find yourself not able to sleep.
• Recognize anew & afresh that your life is bound up with His.
• Pray thru knowing that you’re His child whom He loves deeply.
• This situation has come along but it’s in His love.
• He’s allowed it. He’s working through it. He’s strengthening you.
NOW WHEN Paul arrived in Athens was being stirred up too.
• All he could see was their lostness & idolatry.
Acts 17.16 Now while Paul waited for them at Athens, his spirit was provoked within him when he saw that the city was given over to idols.
• Literally ‘stimulated, exasperated, irritated’
• He couldn’t stand what he was seeing. It broke his heart.
History tells us that Athens was filled with some 25,000-30,000 different statues & little deities.
• A common saying for the city was that it was easier to find a god than a man. They were wholly sold over to idolatry.
AND THIS idolatry also provoked a little fear in Paul as he thought back on the churches in Berea and Thessalonica… (3.1-5)
• OH I hope they are OK, that their still walking with the Lord.
I. (3:1-5) UNEASY FEELINGS
1. (1-2) I had to know.
a. He tells them that he just had to know how they were.
b. We just couldn’t stand it wondering how you were doing.
c. So we sent Timothy to you… our brother & minister of God & fellow laborer in the gospel.
NOTE: What a great description of this young man.
• He was a BROTHER, a SERVANT, a MINISTER.
• It’s a GOOD THING to have a Timothy around when your heart is stirred up, when you’re concerned, worried, fearful.