Summary: Sixth message on the topic of fear from our series on Judges.
Judges Series #15 L:ife Cycles
“Fighting Fear with Fear” Part 6
I have sought to understand the topic of fear from a Biblical perspective over the past several weeks. The subject permeates Scripture from Adam in the book of Genesis to the tribulation in the book of Revelation. Everyone experiences fear from time to time.
Fear is a tangible involuntary reaction to a perceived or actual threat to my well-being that is either present or potential that requires some sort of intentional response.
I have suggested a process by which to tame the paralyzing beast. We will never fully eliminate fear in this life but we can minimize it through a Biblical response. I have come to view that stirring in the gut as a warning signal that something is wrong and I need to respond. There may be something wrong in my thinking. There may be something wrong with my trust. There may be something wrong in my world that threatens my wellbeing.
Analyze the fear.
Consider the intentional response.
The primary intentional response to fear must always involve trust in and obedience to God.
God is an infinite all-powerful, all-knowing, everywhere present God who pledges to incorporate every threatening circumstance and tragedy into a master plan that works out for His ultimate glory and our ultimate good. This same God declares His unconditional love and unending presence and ultimate purpose. The realization of these truths serve to diffuse our unsettling fear in the face of threatening circumstances taking place now or loom in the future. The promise of God’s love, power and presence in the face of threat accompany the numerous admonishments to take courage and do not fear.
Such trust and obedience enables the other possible responses to life’s threats.
Stand and courageously fight the enemy or wisely escape the treat by God’s direction.
Wait for God’s timing to respond with courage and hope.
Pray to our infinite God with thanksgiving in every threatening circumstance.
Pursue further truth and understanding related to the source of the threat.
Encourage others with godly words and touch
Prepare spiritually and mentally for threating tribulation in life
Rejoice in the Lord always, again God says REJOICE!!
Genuine trust in the infinite loving God also enables us to avoid the things that intensify fear.
Avoid Sin and disobedience that increases our level of fear.
Access divine healing from previous trauma in our past that affects our present.
Eliminate pride and a hard heart that causes us to fall short of the grace of God.
Resist doubt and ignorance that forces us to rely on our own strength rather than His.
Defeat demonic influence and strongholds that have gained a foothold in our life.
Develop the fear the Lord rather than people or pain
Fear functions as a measure of genuine faith. If we say we trust God with our future yet continue to fret about what MIGHT happen in the future, the reality is we are not really trusting God. To say we have faith or trust in God does not mean we have it. Life demonstrates the reality of our faith. Use fear as a tool to discover doubt and inspire us to trust God more fully. Most fear stunts our spiritual growth and weakens our faith. The Bible addresses other aspects of fear that produce positive results.
Along with a dark list of life and ministry threatening circumstances, Paul listed the daily, pressure or burden of his concern (fear) for all the churches. That concern motivated specific intentional action.
In 1 Cor 12:25, God instructs us to have a concern for fellow followers of Jesus that motivates us to act.
Hebrews teaches that God provides a rest for His people.
There remains a Sabbath rest for the people of God. For the one who has entered His rest has himself also rested from his works, as God did from His. Therefore let us be diligent to enter that rest, so that no one will fall, through following the same example of disobedience. Hebrews 4:9-11
We become so weary striving in this life.
We strive for God’s approval.
We strive for happiness.
We strive for success.
The psalmist admonished us to “Cease striving and know that I am God.”
"Cease striving and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth." The LORD of hosts is with us; The God of Jacob is our stronghold. Selah. Psalm 46:10-11
The writer of Hebrews called his readers actually to fear missing that rest.
Hebrews instructs us to fear missing God’s promised rest.
Therefore, let us fear if, while a promise remains of entering His rest, any one of you may seem to have come short of it. For indeed we have had good news preached to us, just as they also; but the word they heard did not profit them, because it was not united by faith in those who heard. Hebrews 4:1-2