September 04 2021
Today, Saturday September 4
1 John 4:17-19 “By this is love perfected with us, so that we may have confidence for the day of judgment, because as he is so also are we in this world. There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear. For fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not been perfected in love. We love because he first loved us.”
We all deal with the issue of fear! We fear the past because of things that happened to us that still cause us to have emotional trauma. We fear the past because of things we did that we still make us feel guilty. We fear the past because of things we didn’t do that we should have done.
We fear the present because of someone or something is threatening to hurt us or someone we love. We fear the present because of the financial dilemma we have find ourselves in and now we can’t pay the rent or make the mortgage. And we can fear the future because of its uncertainty.
Life is full of fears and we don’t know who to trust! The Bible speaks often on the subject of fear! Here in this passage John says that “fear torments us” (v. 18). Fear can hold us captive and disrupt our lives. Over twelve times in Scripture we read the words, “Fear not…”. Fear is a strong emotional feeling that of course is very real.
Now for sure, there are some things we should fear. I’ve been convinced for years that the two greatest motivations in life are love and fear! Our fear of getting a ticket if we speed should keep us from speeding and being unsafe. Our fear of not getting a paycheck if we don’t go to work should motivate us to go to work. Our fear of future judgment should motivate us to trust Christ today.
There is a healthy “fear of the Lord” which is the “beginning of knowledge”. But fear that torments or punishes us is not good. That kind of fear is the opposite of faith. That kind of fear is a reminder that we are looking at circumstances or people and we are not trusting and believing God.
One of the disciplines that has sustained me and given me strength to face the challenges of life has been to read at least five Psalms and one Proverb every day. Also reading several good devotionals daily has greatly blessed and helped me. You can find them on my website: www.pmiministries.org
In 1988, I was going through a major crisis in my life and ministry, and one of the verses that gave me great hope and courage that everything would be alright is found in Isaiah 41:10. “Fear not, for I am with you; Be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, Yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.'”
I trust it will bless and help you like it did me!