Summary: The Fear of The Lord also means we should have a terror in our hearts because God is not the nic pink fluffy God people say he is.
Church as it was meant to be, was a community of saints who feared God. (Acts 9:31)
In doing these studies, we want to discover and do church the way God has designed His Church to be, without personal preference, cultural influence or denominational perspectives. A person’s experience of their earthly father can influence the kind of fear they have of God. An over-emphasis on the love, grace and mercy of God can result in living without any fear of the Lord.
I have some questions about ‘fearing the Lord.’
Is walking in the fear of the Lord the same as being filled with fear of the Lord?
Should a loving God who casts out all fear, who has not given to us a Spirit of fear, ever allow us to be filled with fear?
Is fearing God’s anger or displeasure, Old Testament and only something the ungodly should fear?
Walking in the fear of the Lord (Acts 9:31):
Is to live in Awe, Honour and Reverence of the Lord. Whatever we do, wherever we go, whatever we say or whatever we think, our hearts desire, if we fear the Lord, must be to please God. We please God by discovering and doing His will, by living by faith, free from the sinful entanglement of the world, continually allowing God to do His Good work in us (2 Tim 2:4; Heb 11:6, 13:20-21; 1Thess 2:4, 4:1; Gal 1:10)
Is to live in dread and trembling of the Lord. (Phil 2:2)
Perhaps modern destine for God’s judgement, punishment and hell have influenced the church to create a “nice, pink, fluffy” kind of God, who only ever does nice things and whom we should never fear.
The Greek word for fear is "PHOBOS." It not only involves awe and reverence, but it also includes dread, terror, and that which strikes terror.
Is “Phobos” something Christians should feel in relation to God?
In Acts 5:11, the early Christians, and everyone who heard what happened to Ananias and Sapphira were, Luke tells us, “seized with fear.” So what happened to the “Casting out of fear? ”
When someone dies, people often think about their eternal destiny. When confronted with a near death experience, people often take stock of what really matters in life.
Perhaps this is what happened to the early church, or maybe they were filled with fear when they saw there were consequences to offending God.
Often, the shock of a tragic event wears off and we go back to the way we were before, sometimes living a reckless life without any care of the spiritual consequences.
Walking in the fear of the Lord requires a consciousness that God is watching and a consistency in seeking to please God in the “wherevers” and “whatevers” of life.
The book of Proverbs reminds us there are good consequences to walking in the fear of the Lord:
1. The "fear of the Lord" is the beginning of knowledge - Pr 1:7
2. The "fear of the Lord" will cause one to hate evil - Pr 8:13
3. The "fear of the Lord" will prolong life - Pr 10:27
4. The "fear of the Lord" provides strong confidence and is a fountain of life - Pr 14:26-27
5. The "fear of the Lord" prompts one to depart from evil - Pr 16:6
6. The "fear of the Lord" leads to a satisfying life, and spares one from much evil - Pr 19:23
7. The "fear of the Lord" is the way to riches, honour, and life! - Pr 22:4
The opposite applies when we walk without the fear of the Lord.
Walking Without the Fear of the Lord (Rom 2:10-18)
It is not only the ungodly or non-Christian that walks without the fear of the Lord. Many Christians live without any fear of the Lord in their hearts, lacking the consciousness that God is watching.
Christians who walk without the fear of the Lord are:
1. “People Pleasers.” Of course it’s good to please people, but not when it requires compromising on the principles of God. We have an audience of ONE. We only need the “well done” applauses of ONE. Popularity with people is secondary to pleasing God.
2. “Secret Sinners.” If you are walking in the fear of the Lord, you will constantly examine yourself to see if there is anything that offends God in your life. If you are not walking in the fear of the Lord, you just don’t care, or you convince yourself that God is not too bothered about your little sin. God is not going to kill you if you sin, but he is waiting for you to say; Ps 139 23-24 Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.