The Best Fears Are Holy:
Fear is good. It’s the most basic physiological instinct we’re given. We might not always understand our fears, but without it survival is impossible. When you cross a busy road and hear the screeching brakes of a vehicle, fear propels you into a sprint for safety. When you’re walking alone at night and hear footsteps behind you, fear heightens your alertness. Fear is good and necessary.
However, we may choose to suppress our fear because it is uncomfortable or it makes us look weak. We may cite Scripture which reinforces the need to “Fear not!”.
But, the Bible teaches that it’s not the ‘feeling of fear’ we are called to flee from. Rather, it’s the source of our fears that needs to be examined. We often fear the loss of our jobs, the deterioration of our health, or a dip in our likeability amongst peers. The Bible calls us to prioritise a different kind of fear.
Jesus declared to his Apostles, “Do not fear those who can kill the body but cannot kill the soul.” (Mat. 10:28) He is saying, expect to face your worst fears, and expect threats to your life! But in the face of those fears, remember that they are nothing compared to the threat of being God’s enemy. The most precious and necessary kind of fear is in making God the first of our fears. A holy fear that produces the most desirable fruit, “the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.” (Prov. 9:10)
Friends, fear is good and necessary, but holy fear is better. Don’t make the loss of comfort, health and safety the focus of your fear. Instead let a holy threat consume the lesser fears of your heart. The fear of being His enemy, and the fear of living in disobedience to His Word. We need a fear that propels us to flee to God and holds fast to His will. We need the fear of the Lord. A dangerous mistake the believer can make is to live without the right fear.