PROPER FEAR THAT LEADS TO FREEDOM

September 25, 2017

JEREMIAH 5:20-31

 

FEAR

 

To not have fear is either stupidity, insanity, and or ignorance. We think that courage is the lack of fear when in reality courage is not the lack of fear but in the midst of it, choosing to do the right thing. For you do not need courage when there is no fear

 

Today’s passage tells us an aspect of fear in the spiritual realm and how I believe that when we have a right view of fear and especially the fear of God, then we will not only close the doors to judgment but keep the doors of blessing open.

 

WHEN LACK OF FEAR LEADS TO STUBBORN AND REBELLIOUS HEARTS

  • But this people has a stubborn and rebellious heart; they have turned aside and gone away (v.23)

    • Despite the craziness of who God is, the very people of God who experienced His majestic wonders did not have a proper view of Him. Their hearts were described as being stubborn and rebellious.

      • To be stubborn is not a bad thing in of itself because one can be either stubborn against discipline or can be stubborn against sin because stubbornness is dependent upon what it is linked up with. However this is one of the many cases where stubbornness is linked with a bad characteristic in rebellion. Stubbornness and rebellion leads us away from God, which closes the door to intimacy.

      • A life that walks away from God usually happens over a period of time rather than overnight. When a turning from God may seem like it was “all of a sudden” that is only a lie because that “all of a sudden” moment is just the bursting of the bubble that has been growing steadily over time.

 

FEAR OF GOD IS AN OPEN DOOR TO BLESSING, LACK OF IT A DOOR OF JUDGMENT

  • They do not say in their hearts, ‘Let us fear the LORD our God, who gives the rain it its season, the autumn rain and the spring rain, and keeps for us the weeks appointed for the harvest.’ Your iniquities have turned these away, and your sins have kept good from you. (v.24-25)

    • The fear of God is not oppressive.

    • The fear of God opens doors for opportunities.

    • The fear God helps us walk away from iniquity (sin) because what we see to be the highest value of fear is actually the thing that will capture our attention the most. For instance, if you were in a room with a ferocious lion and a pitbull, which one will have your attention more? Exactly! Therefore, if God is not feared, He does not have our attention and that leaves room for our attention to be snatched up by something else. The Israelites lack of fear of God turned them away from God, which closed the door of blessing and only opened the door of judgment. (See v.29)

 

THE WICKED ARE SPRINTERS WHILE THE RIGHTEOUS MARATHON RUNNERS

  • For wicked men are found among my people; they lurk like fowlers lying in wait. They set a trap; they catch men. Like a cage full of birds, their houses are full of deceit; therefore they have become great and rich; they have grown fat and sleek. (v.26-27)

    • I’m not against sprinters, so if you are track star, please don’t stop reading or condemn yourself. What this is saying is that the wicked do in fact prosper here on earth and the LORD acknowledges that but we must remember that there is more to this life than what we see because there is this life and the afterlife. These wicked people are prosperous and they may be protected from all the things of this world but this momentary prosperity will not guard them against the judgment of God.

      • V. 29 states, “Shall I not punish them for these things? Declares the LORD, and shall I not avenge myself on a nation such as this?”

        • God will avenge those who have been hurt by such people and that God is the one that will in the end set all things right so if we prosper wickedly in this life and do not turn from that life then we are slowly closing the door of eternal blessing while opening the door to judgement. CHOOSE wisely!

 

Our decisions are either opening doors or closing doors and how we choose will determine what they are. If we keep the fear of God forever present before us then we will find that the doors that truly matter and truly bless will be opened so therefore as I have said before, CHOOSE wisely by choosing God!

 

Please reload

© 2019 Bethany United Methodist Church

  • Facebook - Black Circle
  • YouTube - Black Circle
  • Instagram - Black Circle