Thursday, February 24, 2011

The Fear of the Lord in Scripture

As you read through the Bible, you find that one of the great themes of Scripture is the fear of God. I have to say, however, that it wasn't until I starting reading through the Bible systematically that this doctrine was really pressed upon me. I realized that the fear of the Lord is immensely important; it is the beginning of all knowledge!! What I simply want to do in this post is to give some verses throughout different sections of the Bible where the fear of the Lord is present. Let us see what the Bible says about the fear of God.

The Pentateuch: “Moses said to the people, “Do not fear, for God has come to test you, that the fear of him may be before you, that you may not sin.” (Exodus 20:20) In other words, the purpose of all of the commandments that God had given the Israelites is in two words: fear God. Deuteronomy 4:10 “Gather the people to me, that I may let them hear my words, so that they may learn to fear me all the days that they live on the earth.”

The Historical Books: “For the LORD your God dried up the waters of the Jordan for you until you passed over, as the LORD your God did to the Red Sea, which he dried up for us until we passed over, so that all the peoples of the earth may know that the hand of the LORD is mighty, that you may fear the LORD your God forever." Joshua 4:23, 24
In 1 Samuel 12 we have the requirements of a successful kingdom: “Only fear the Lord and serve him faithfully with all your heart” (1 Samuel 12:24).

The Wisdom Literature
In Ecclesiastes Solomon gives us the only thing that matters in life: “Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole duty of man” (Ecclesiastes 12:13)
“Let not your heart envy sinners, but continue in the fear of the LORD all the day” (Proverbs 24:17).

The Major Prophets
Jeremiah gives us the marks of the people of the new covenant: “I will give them one heart and one way, that they may fear me forever, for their own good. And I will put the fear of me in their hearts, that they may not turn from me” (Jer. 32:39, 40)

The Minor Prophets
In Malachi we have a description of those who will escape the wrath of God in the great day of the Lord: “But for you who fear my name, the sun of righteousness shall rise with healing in its wings” (Malachi 4:2).

The Gospels
Jesus says, “Do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell” (Matthew 10:28).

The Epistles
“Since we have these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from every defilement of body and spirit, bringing holiness to completion in the fear of God” (2 Cor. 7:1)
The apostle Peter learned well, “Fear God” (1 Peter 2:17).

What can we conclude from all these Scripture verses?
1. Since all throughout Scripture God testifies that the fear of God is a great theme; we should strive to fear God will all our being.
2.The more we fear God, the more godly we are. The reverse is also true, the less we fear God, the less we know of true godliness.
3. We all know that we have failed in this area; therefore the fear of the Lord runs us to the gospel. There is One who did fear the Lord His God every second of His great life, therefore run to the great Savior Jesus Christ!

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