Sep15TuePart 1 September 15, 2020
The fear of the Lord is a fountain of life, turning people from the snares of death. Proverbs 14:27
To fear the Lord: is not only to fear God, but also to honor, to respect, to hold in awe; worship Him.
Don’t you just love verses that grab your attention and hold on? This one did for me. I’ve been studying the fear of the Lord and God brought me to this verse. The fear of the Lord is a fountain of life, turning people from the snare of death. That’s a good word!
What does honoring God do? It brings to my life a freshness, a stream of abundance. As a fountain is a constant flow,a source of life, so too is the fear of the Lord in me. It brings newness, awareness and growth to my heart and soul. He opens my eyes to the snares on my path and turns me to that which is good. Honoring Him, worshipping Him brings life! Life to my dead situations, life to my dreams, my work, life into my words. Proverbs 29:23: “The fear of the Lord leads to life and whoever has it rests satisfied; he will not be visited with harm.”
I think of how a flow of water doesn’t allow anything dead. Doesn’t have room for stagnancy. So also does honoring God, keep me from becoming dull and sluggish. The enemy sets traps to steal and destroy this life flow. It’s his aim to make the believer think casually about God and his commandments. In doing this, man becomes lukewarm and dispassionate. Reverence for Jesus on the other hand, is a fountain within me, a well of life springing up and going forth. Honoring and loving Him, fearing Him, is a lifestyle (a fresh water flow) that brings a higher quality to all of life.
Proverbs 22:4: The reward for humility and fear of the Lord is riches and honor and life.
In Isaiah 64:8, we are also reminded that the Lord is our Father and Creator. We are the clay and He is the potter. We are all the work of His hands. In Deut. 32:6: “Is this the way you repay the Lord, foolish and unwise people? Isn’t he your father who has bought you? He has made you and established you.”
These verses drive home the point: He IS your Father. He loved you from creation, He made you and established you. You were but a lump of clay when the Creator, the Father breathe in you His breath and gave you life. You are the work of His hand. Anything and everything that is good about you - is his handiwork. He not only created you, but has loved you from everlasting and because of that love redeemed your life. He left heaven to come to earth, suffered and died an agonizing death to bring you back into unity with Him.
How do we repay Him? How then shall we live? Shall we live as one who has been brought with a high price? What is our response to such immeasurable love? Let me ask you this: If a random stranger puts himself in harms way to save your life what would your response be? Shouldn’t this response be tripled in regards to the Father, who loved you from the beginning, molded you into His image and then also saved you from the pits of hell? He’s not asking for you to return the favor - you never could. He only wants your love, your respect, your honor; and He asks for these, not out of a sense of obligation or debt. But because He knows that out of these actions - love, honor, respect,- flows your wellbeing.
How does one fear the Lord?
•Living life uprightly, with integrity
Whoever walks in uprightness fears the LORD, but he who is devious in his ways despises him.” Prov. 14:2 ESVi
•Cleansing oneself from anything that defiles, and perfecting holiness within
Beloved ones, with promises like these, and because of our deepest respect and worship of God, we must remove everything from our lives that contaminates body and spirit, and continue to complete the development of holiness within us.” 2 Corinthians 7:1 TPT
•“submitting to one another in the fear of God.” Ephesians 5:21 NKJV
Be willing to serve each other out of respect for Christ.”
Ephesians 5:21 ERV
•With thankfulness, in awe, serve God
“Do you see what we’ve got? An unshakable kingdom! And do you see how thankful we must be? Not only thankful, but brimming with worship, deeply reverent before God. For God is not an indifferent bystander. He’s actively cleaning house, torching all that needs to burn, and he won’t quit until it’s all cleansed. God himself is Fire!”
Hebrews 12:28-29 MSG
•giving immediate obedience in answer to Gods voice and commands
“Do you not know that when you continually offer yourselves to someone to do his will, you are the slaves of the one whom you obey, either [slaves] of sin, which leads to death, or of obedience, which leads to righteousness (right standing with God)? But thank God that though you were slaves of sin, you became obedient with all your heart to the standard of teaching in which you were instructed and to which you were committed.”
Romans 6:16-17 AMP
Fearing the Lord means instant obedience even when we don’t understand. Why?Because as sons and daughters we understand to be obedient is a reflection of our heart towards Him. We honor Him, therefore it’s a pleasure to obey Him. It’s living in a posture of yielding to Him, knowing His will is not to harm you, but to give you hope and a future.
Never take fear of the Lord to mean “being scared of God.” Rather it’s a heart that is terrified to be away from God. Isaiah 8:12-13 says it like this: “Don’t call a conspiracy all that this people call a conspiracy. Don’t fear their threats or be terrorised. The Lord of Armies is who you must respect as holy. He is the one you must fear. He is the one you must dread.”
The word fear (in Greek) denotes here: respect and a deep reverence. The word dread: terror. For those outside of God and His will, it should be terrifying. God is just and full of patience, but there is coming a day when all will be held accountable for their actions. John 3:18 says it plainly: “Anyone who believes in Him is not condemned, but anyone who does not believe is already condemned, because he has not believed in the Name of the one and only Son of God.”
On the other hand, those who are honoring God, and are obeying His word and living righteously, fear of the Lord is the shield which protects and the bridge which leads heaven-ward. A mind that is renewed to the Word understands to be away from God is to be outside of His will, and therefore outside of His favor and blessing. That is a scary place to be. The one who fears the Lord loves the Lord, and does not want to hurt the Fathers’ heart by living in disobedience.
“Blessed is everyone who fears the LORD, who walks in his ways!” (Psa. 128:1 ESVi)
“but the LORD takes pleasure in those who fear him, in those who hope in his steadfast love.” (Psa. 147:11 ESVi)