Fear is one of Satan’s favorite and most effective weapons. Whether it is fear of the future, fear of the unknown, or fear of man, our enemy wants to entrap us with our own fear so that we do not trust the Lord in all things. The devil may wrap fear in the illusion of pragmatism, but it is still fear. It is relying upon our own wisdom instead of obeying the Word of God. Solomon connects this dichotomy:
“The fear of man brings a snare, but whoever trusts in the Lord shall be safe.” (Proverbs 29:25)
When you search the Scriptures for examples of faithful men abandoning God for their fears, the evidence is overwhelming. It is also instructive for us. We do the same thing when we allow our fears to overcome our faith. It is an uncomfortable position to be in as a Christian. Some of the most anxious times in my life are when I have given into my fear of man because I was looking at a circumstance with earthly eyes. A man of God who is fearful of godless men is an oxymoron:
“A righteous man who falters before the wicked is like a murky spring and a polluted well.” (Proverbs 25:26)
Last night as I was watching the Republican Presidential Debate held in Miami, it occurred to me that many people are supporting unrighteous candidates not just because of anger. Many are afraid of the future when they look at the present. I get that. It is completely understandable for someone who isn’t a follower of Christ.
Those of us who claim Christ as King are not to be moved by unsubstantiated anger or fear. At times we will be surprised by the state of our nation, but God is never surprised. Moreover, the depravity of man and the depths in which it seeps should never surprise us.
Furthermore, we cannot forsake biblical teachings because we think as a nation we are in dire straits. If we trust God, then we have to trust God! If we do not, then the Prophet Isaiah has a vivid explanation of how we act:
“And it was told to the house of David, saying, ‘Syria’s forces are deployed in Ephraim.’ So his heart and the heart of his people were moved as the trees of the woods are moved with the wind.” (Isaiah 7:2)
King Ahaz looked out the window and saw a formidable enemy arrayed against Judah. Ahaz lost heart, and his fearfulness infected the nation. Judah had been delivered before, and yet instead of remembering God’s faithfulness, the people were ensnared by their fear of man.
I do not mean to minimize the threat of depravity and evil surrounding us. Our nation is rotting from the inside out. It is a real threat and it may very well destroy our nation. Nevertheless, we cannot succumb to our fears and trust in our own pragmatism and wisdom to seek a solution. We are bound by Scripture no matter the threat we face because we have a sovereign King:
“And you, son of man, do not be afraid of them nor be afraid of their words, though briers and thorns are with you and you dwell among scorpions; do not be afraid of their words or dismayed by their looks, though they are a rebellious house. You shall speak My words to them, whether they hear or whether they refuse, for they are rebellious.” (Ezekiel 2:6-7)
Beloved, we are indeed facing challenging times. This is why this election is so very important. However, its importance should not drive us to abandoning the principles that founded our nation. Those principles are biblical and they have been tested in the crucible of time and turmoil. Most Christians acknowledged this and yet they abandon Jesus. Writing on Proverbs 29:25, Matthew Henry comments on this phenomenon:
“Many are ashamed to own Christ now; and He will not own them in the day of judgment. But he that trusts in the Lord will be saved from this snare.”
Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, are you ensnared by the fear of man? Man cannot change your eternity, even though he may alter your present. Keep your eyes on Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith. Whenever you are faced with man’s wiles, remember these encouraging words from the Prophet Jeremiah:
“‘Do not be afraid of their faces, for I am with you to deliver you,’ says the Lord.” (Jeremiah 1:8)
Dear Lord, let us never forget that you are always with us. Amen.
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Copyright © 2016 David Jeffers