Our Fears, Legitimate or Childish
Outline: All people have fears. Some are childish, some are legitimate. Discuss the prominent place fear has in the Bible, and the kinds of fear. Fear that is awe in the presence of God, etc. Guilt brings fear. Christ banishes fear as individuals accept His salvation.
|Theme:||Fear; Peace with God; Faith, trust, believe in Jesus; Assurance|
Scripts are basic guidelines for translation and recording into other languages. They should be adapted as necessary to make them understandable and relevant for each different culture and language. Some terms and concepts used may need more explanation or even be replaced or omitted completely.
All people have fears at one time or another. Fear is a strange phenomenon. Sometimes it rises up so unexpectedly that one can die of shock. Sometimes it creeps in like a wily serpent. It has a thousand aspects from apprehension to anxiety to worry, from worry to anguish, from anguish to fright, and from fright to terror.
Fear gives sleeplessness, nervousness, it takes the color from one's face, it provokes trembling, dilates the eyes, makes the hair to stand on end. There are childish fears. Who doesn't remember the fears of his childhood?-Fear of the night, fear of silence?
Besides these childish fears there are legitimate ones - fear of danger, of the menaces in lives, fear of the enemy, which is not always a soldier armed with a machine gun, or a murderer, but who is sometimes a so-called friend-a brother who betrays you. There are men whom we fear-fear of suffering, fear of illness, fear of death. One can fear for others. How many mothers live in continual anxiety for their children!
If we look into the Bible we are struck with the prominent place it gives to fear. It speaks of it very often, either to describe the state of those who are victims of it or to warn us against it. The first words man said were, "I was afraid and I hid myself." And almost the last words man will say will be, "Mountains and rocks, fall on us!" (Rev. 6:16) Between these two fears -the first, the fear of Adam, and the last, preceding the judgment of God -will come all our other fears large and small, past, present and to come.
Beyond all other fears, is what is called "Original fear," the fear of God. Adam and Eve tremble after their sin-they are ashamed and hide themselves. When God gave His life to Israel, the people in the camp were filled with fear. When Jehovah revealed Himself in all His majesty the prophet Isaiah cried out, "Woe unto me!"
When we read through the N.T, we see that the presence or intervention of Christ provoked the same phenomena of fear. The soldiers who came to arrest Him in the garden of Gethsemane fell to the ground with fright. Pilate, the Roman Governor, who needed to fear nothing from his prisoner, Jesus, became frightened when he heard that Christ was the Son of God. The Centurion and those with him were struck with terror when they saw the earthquake which marked the death of Christ. At the resurrection, the guards who kept the tomb trembled with fear and became as dead when the angel came to roll away the stone. Fear got hold of men when Jesus manifested to them His divinity.
Even now, God creates in human beings a sense of fear when they realize that on one hand they are guilty, and on the other, an immense distance separates them from Him. They are afraid.
In man's constant state of fear God stepped in. He has sent His only Son into the world so that we might get healing from our fears. The whole story of the coming of Jesus Christ to the earth was filled with "Fear not." Zacharias, the priest, Mary the humble virgin, Joseph still perplexed, the shepherds all heard this liberating word.
Jesus said to Simon Peter, "Fear not," at the time of the miraculous catch of fish when he cried out, "Lord, depart from me, I am a sinful man." On the Mount of Transfiguration He said to His disciples who had fallen on their faces, "Get up, fear not." He quiets down the women who came to the tomb on the day of resurrection and on the same evening He came to the disciples who were gathered together in the upper room, and said, "Peace be with you."
By the intervention of the Son of God, Who expiates the sin of man and establishes new relationships between the Creator and His creatures, a way of light opens up where fear is banished. From now on God is near. He is no longer a judge, but a father (Rom. 8:15). Peace is given back to us. Christ is our peace. He establishes an alliance of peace between God and those whom He calls His. The chastisement of our peace was laid upon Him. Once we have this assurance, we do not need to fear anymore. Our fears vanish. Peace fills our hearts. Fear gives place to trust and rest.
Let us take God as being true. Let us believe in His Word. Let us stand on His promises and our fears will disappear. The author of the Epistle to the Hebrews says, "We who have believed will enter into His rest." But in order that our trust may be efficacious it must begin with obedience. Those who pretend to believe but disobey, annul the promises of God.
Then, confidence becomes thankfulness. To be thankful to God, to know how to say thanks for everything, even in trials - because they, too, contribute to our spiritual good - is to triumph over fear. The Psalmist has said, "I cried out `Blessed be the Lord' and I was delivered from mine enemies." Therefore, dear friends, have confidence, obedience and praise, and you will have fear no longer.
Comment from Virginia Miller: This script must have been written for a highly educated language group. I can't see where it would fit the type of people we are attempting to reach in 9/10th of the world.