I know. This is scary season. I’m reminded of the Bill Cosby bit about how he wasn’t supposed to listen to the Horror stories on the radio. “Scare me to death. Scare me to death!” Next week I’ve got some articles about fear and its negative effects, but for today, I want to share about the fear that Christians are supposed to keep at all times.
The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom. Psalm 111:10 Tweet this!
This verse, in its original language, says that wisdom itself begins with fear of God. It refers to the reverence for the Lord and an unwillingness to offend Him.
But wait a minute. God is Father. Abba. Daddy. We don’t have to worry about offending Him, right?
God is indeed all of those things and He urges us to come boldly to His throne with our requests. (Hebrews 4:15) But His character description also includes Almighty, Holy, Omniscient. We’re supposed to walk humbly before Him. (Micah 6:8)
In all honesty, there are countless verses that deal with the way we are supposed to honor our Heavenly Father and all areas point to a reverence, awe, respect, and submission to Him. Maybe the best lessons from scripture are for the times when the people didn’t respect the Lord.
When King David triumphantly brought the ark of the covenant up from the Philistines, he disregarded God’s specific instructions in Leviticus 4. Instead of having it carried by men on strong poles, he had an ox pulling it on a cart. The cart carrying the ark teetered, so a man (likely a friend of David to have such a position) put his hand on the ark to stabilize it and died immediately. He wasn’t doing anything wrong really, but didn’t pay attention to God’s directions. (I think it was as much a judgement of David, who should have made sure he knew the rules, as the man who actually died.
In another instance, Ananias and Sapphira claimed they were donating the full amount collected from some land they sold. This was their donation; they could make the amount for anything they wanted, but they decided to lie about their charity. They kept some of the money back for themselves and simply claimed that what they were giving was all of it. Their gift seemed to come from a desire to show off. But they attempted to lie to God Himself, ignoring the fact that He knows everything and disregarding His holiness. I think God made a statement when they died immediately. I’m betting a holy terror fell on all the followers at that point!
So while we are not supposed to be scared, we should have a constant recognition of Who God is and who we are under Him in order to live daily in reverence.
Your turn: What other verses or stories would you include with this lesson?
2012/October at 6:58 am
I’m s firm believer that God gives what one needs exactly when one needs it. I’ve seen that happen in my life in so many ways: an insurance check showing up when the bank book was pushing empty; my mother being laid off EXACTLY when I needed a babysitter for my boys so I could return to work w/o putting them in daycare (which I couldn’t afford); lightening literally striking the ONE cottage (in a row of four) at our development that was a major hazard–owner has supposedly moved to West Coast and had been out of contact for 20 years.
I often think of the prophet Elijah going to the widow during a period of famine and asking her to make him a cake with the only flour and oil she had left. She did so–reluctantly I’m sure–and took in the stranger as he directed. I’ve always been tremendously encouraged by the way the flour and oil never ran out as long as Elijah lived with this family.
Thanks for this post, Marji!
2012/October at 5:29 pm
Excellent examples! I whole-heartedly agree with you. God is never too early and never too late with the things He knows we need!
2012/October at 7:26 pm
I hope those who are devastated by Superstorm Sandy can feel that. I was so blessed with only a power outage. God’s power was so shown in that storm.
2012/October at 9:36 pm
So glad you’re all right, Joanna. What a monster! I watched it swallow the eastern seaboard from my chair in front of the Weather Channel. Not something I’d ever want to face!
2012/November at 9:46 pm
We visited an affected area this past Sunday. I took only one photo. I hadn’t the heart to take more. I’m hoping to have my act together and a post on it later this week or next.
Thanks so much, Marji. Hope all is well with you.
2012/November at 11:08 pm
I got online and found a bevy of before and after shots. Never having visited that region before, it broke my heart to see the devastation. I feel for the people who have lost so much!
2012/November at 8:25 pm
So do I. And more is revealed as the shore communities’ residents begin to go home. Please keep them in prayer. Thanks, Marji.
2012/October at 10:37 am
Great post! We all need to be more awed by God and His great power. Although we know He will take care of us in any circumstance we go through, we need to be reminded of His power and might. Sitting through a tremendous thunder storm is just a sampling of what His power can render. It can be frightening for we mere mortals–but He is in control. I have to remind myself of that on a daily basis. God bless you, Marji.
2012/October at 1:14 pm
Thanks so much, Carole! And you’re right about that thunderstorm. I remember the first tornado I saw. So overwhelming to see that finger stretch from sky to earth right in front of me, but awed that God Himself had more power!
2012/October at 6:59 am
It seems to me by making everything “awesome” (waaaaay overused word for everthing from lattes to tennis shoes) we have made it hard to truly find awe and reverence for our truly Awesome God. Sad thing, I think. I own that this is a struggle for me that I am consciously confessing and repenting because I want to keep out front and on top in my life. Thanks for this reminder, it made for good quiet time. Blessings.
2012/October at 1:12 pm
So glad, Tina! This has been a burden on my heart as well!