Friday, September 23, 2011

Fear the Lord #1

Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: fear God and keep His commandments, for this is man’s all. Ecclesiastes 12:13

Everything in life boils down to this one simple truth, fearing God! So the all important question is what does it mean to fear God? When we think of fear, we associate the word with terror. Webster's Dictionary defines fear as "a feeling of anxiety and agitation produced by the presence or nearness of danger, evil, pain, etc." For many, this would describe the feeling you get when you see a snake, go to the doctor or dentist, or when you find yourself in a time of extreme danger. It is dread of the unknown. Surely, this is not the sensation Solomon is referring to.
In our modern vernacular, the word fear, in the context in which it is used by Solomon, has been replaced with reverence, awe, great respect. What the writer of this book is saying is that we are to have a deep reverence and respect for the Lord. Literally, we are to be awed and humbled by His presence. Fearing God includes, but it is not limited to, respecting and reverencing Him. Holy fear gives God the place of glory, honor, reverence, thanksgiving, praise and preeminence He deserves. But simply put, fearing God is to respect His holiness by hating what He hates and loving what He loves, with a wholesome dread of displeasing Him.
When we truly fear the Lord, we will recognize that He is the Creator and we are the creatures. He is the Master and we are the servants. He is the Father and we are the children. This attitude will manifest itself in our having a respect for God, His word and in our having a desire to do what He tells us to in His Bible. We can relate this kind of fear to that which a child has for his parents. If the right kind of fear is present, the child knows that his parents can punish him if there is disobedience, but overriding that fear is the knowledge that disobedience hurts the parents and the child loves and respects his parents and does not want to hurt them. To put it simply, the fear of the Lord is a deep seated reverence for God that causes men to want to please Him at all costs.

No comments:

Post a Comment