Posts Tagged ‘Do not fear’

One more reminder: Do not fear

July 19, 2020

Many times, the Verse of the Day and its commentary seem custom-crafted to address a specific issue that confronts believers on that day. Today, July 19, 2020, the inspiration for this prescription from Dr. J’s Apothecary Shoppe comes from Isaiah 41:10 (Revised Standard Version) to which I add verse 13 to solidify this reminder to have no fear:

So do not fear, for I am with you;
do not be dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you;
I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.

13 For I am the LORD your God
who takes hold of your right hand
and says to you, Do not fear;
I will help you.

This comforting passage brings to mind my book Embracing Your Life Sentence: How to Turn Life’s Greatest Tragedies into Your Greatest Triumphs where I discuss fear as one of the factors impacting my response to prostate cancer more than 20 years ago. Here is an excerpt from Chapter 5 The Fear Factor: “Do not fear; I will help you”:


. . . My situation with prostate cancer forced me to face head-on one of the potentially toxic emotions confronting me throughout the healing process: fear. A cancer diagnosis itself can evoke great fear, in that the term “cancer” too often generates one of the fundamental human fears–the fear of death.

Although we recognize fear as a common and natural emotional response to potential danger, but if not properly addressed, it can become a deadly emotion with serious consequences. Excessive fear can become crippling and impact our daily lives in a negative way. I recognized firsthand that unbridled fear is a toxic emotion that limits and inhibits. Pastor Rick Warren describes fear as “. . . a self-imposed prison that will keep you from becoming what God intends for you to be.”

Fear and Its Antidote

As noted in previous comments, we find 365 references to “have no fear” or “do not fear” in the Bible, so some say. This encouraging word from Isaiah 41 is yet another reminder to believers: “Do not fear.” We could view these particular verses as one of those daily memos from God to have no fear.

If not properly understood and dealt with, fear can metastasize into a toxic emotion that can negatively impact our lives. As believers, we must learn to counteract its harmful effects with the proper remedy. In this case, we find that love is the perfect antidote: the love of God, the highest form of love. This love is “more intimate than friend, or kin or wife.” This close-knit love is also known as agape, a term used exclusively in the New Testament, to reveal the uniqueness of God’s love.

The book of I John also reveals the “perfect” connection between fear and love, particularly in 1 John 2:5

But whoever keeps His word, in him truly the love of God is perfected in him. By this know that we are in Him. [NKJV]

In those who hear the Word of God and keep it, the love of God is “perfected” or made perfect or complete, wanting in nothing or brought to maturity in them. To be “perfected” is to be brought to a full end.
The love of God is “perfected” or made complete or full in us when we walk in the steps of Jesus Christ, the ultimate example of perfect love. Verse 18 provides the basis for love being the perfect antidote to fear:

There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love.

When an individual is “perfected in love” and walks in or demonstrates that love, there no room for fear. The love of God is the key that releases each believer from the bondage of this “self-imposed prison” from which Christ came to set the captives free.

I recall learning about the love of God as a counteractant to fear in a very simple yet profound way. One of the first books that my wife and I used to teach our daughters about our Heavenly Father was My Little Golden Book about God. This was a kind of primer for our daughters who memorized the words and associated them with the illustrations long before they could actually “read.” Some of the most cherished lines were these words which closed out the small book: “Do not fear. I am here. And I love you, my dear. Close your eyes and sleep tight. For tomorrow will be bright. All is well, dear child. Good night.”

This simple response encourages all children of God to have no fear, for God is ever-present, and He continues to say, “And I love you, my dear.” Even in distressful and disturbing situations where we do not clearly understand what is transpiring in our lives health-wise and otherwise, we must remember

There is no Fear in Love

I John 4:18

“Fear is a self-imposed prison that will keep you
from becoming what God intends for you to be.”
– Rick Warren


There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear
And abounds to transform any adverse atmosphere.
We are perfected and made whole when we walk in love,
A true love that we live and not one we just speak of.
Such love is pure and never repels but draws us near.

This balm of love heals all wounds, no matter how severe
With words of compassion each soul on earth longs to hear;
Love conquers any disaster and rises above.
There is no fear in love.

We follow in Christ’s steps, knowing our mandate is clear.
Assured of triumph, there is never a need to fear.
We press toward the mark, the prize we seek to lay hold of
To ascend in victory on wings of a gentle dove.
We walk forth as bold pioneers on a love frontier:
There is no fear in love.

The essence of the message for today is “Have no fear—walk in love.” We conclude as Whitley Phipps offers this encouraging musical reminder: “No Need to Fear”

No need to fear: Do not fear

July 19, 2017

 

The Verse of the Day for July 19, 2017 from Isaiah 41:10 offers words that are especially comforting and reassuring today:

Isaiah 41:10 (AMP):

Do not fear [anything], for I am with you; Do not be afraid, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, be assured I will help you; I will certainly take hold of you with My righteous right hand [a hand of justice, of power, of victory, of salvation].’

Isaiah 41:13 also provides great encouragement and reiterates the message:

“For I the LORD your God keep hold of your right hand; [I am the Lord],
Who says to you, ‘Do not fear, I will help you.’

Once more God, our Father, reminds us to have no fear. Previous blog posts discuss other passages related to issue of fear and God’s continual reassurance that He is with us and there is no need to fear. Here are comments from some of those entries:

In the midst of the perilous times in which we live, we cannot deny that fear seems to abound. We all recognize that fear is a common and natural emotional response to potential danger, but if not properly addressed, it can become a deadly emotion with serious consequences. Excessive fear can become crippling and impact our daily lives in a negative way. Unbridled fear is a toxic emotion that limits and inhibits. Pastor Rick Warren describes fear as “. . . a self-imposed prison that will keep you from becoming what God intends for you to be.”

In 1 John 4:18 we find the perfect antidote to fear:

There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love.

When an individual is “perfected in love” and walks in or demonstrates that love, there no room for fear. The love of God is the key that releases each believer from the bondage of this “self-imposed prison” from which Christ came to set the captives free.

In those who hear the Word of God and keep it, the love of God is “perfected” or made perfect or complete, wanting in nothing or brought to maturity in them. To be “perfected” is to be brought to a full end.

The love of God is “perfected” or made complete or full in us when we walk in the steps of Jesus Christ, the ultimate example of perfect love. When an individual is “perfected in love” and walks in or demonstrates love, there no room for fear.

The following poem is inspired by the verse from 1 John and the statement from Rick Warren:

There is no fear in love

There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear,
because fear involves torment. But he who fears
has not been made perfect in love.
I John 4:18

“Fear is a self-imposed prison that will keep you
from becoming what God intends for you to be.”
Rick Warren

 

There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear

And abounds to transform any adverse atmosphere.

We are perfected and made whole when we walk in love,

A true love that we live and not one we just speak of.

Such love is pure and never repels but draws us near.

 

This balm of love heals all wounds, no matter how severe,

With words of compassion each soul on earth longs to hear;

Love conquers any disaster and rises above.

There is no fear in love.

 

We follow in Christ’s steps, knowing our mandate is clear.

We press toward the mark, the prize we seek to lay hold of

Assured of triumph, there is never a need to fear.

To ascend in victory on wings of a gentle dove.

We walk forth as bold pioneers on a love frontier:

There is no fear in love.

The essence of the message for today is “There is no fear in love.” We conclude as Wintley Phipps offers this encouraging musical reminder: “No Need to Fear”

Do not fear: No need to fear

July 19, 2016

Isaiah 41--10

Taken from Isaiah 41:10 (AMP) the Verse of the Day for July 19, 2016 was originally posted a year ago, but the truth of this particular verse certainly has application to our lives as believers in light of the uncertainty of turbulent times:

‘Do not fear [anything], for I am with you; Do not be afraid, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, be assured I will help you; I will certainly take hold of you with My righteous right hand [a hand of justice, of power, of victory, of salvation].’

I recall reciting this verse which I had learned by heart after I experienced a situation that disturbed me and brought to the surface something that I thought I had dealt with, but I found myself being afraid—needlessly.  So when I read the verse from Isaiah 41, it was especially meaningful to me and addressed a concern in a precise way.

This encouraging word is one of 365 scriptures that address the issue of fear, providing yet another reminder to believers: “Do not fear.” We could view this particular verse as one of our daily memos from God to have no fear.

Recognizably, fear is a common and natural emotional response to potential danger, but if not properly addressed, it can become a deadly emotion with serious consequences. Excessive fear can become crippling and impact our daily lives in a negative way. Unbridled fear is a toxic emotion that can run rampant to limit and inhibit.

As with each of the toxic emotions of life, we want to counteract their harmful effects with the proper remedy. When we encounter a negative emotion, we are encouraged to move in the opposite spirit. In terms of responding to fear in light of moving in the opposite spirit, we find that love is the perfect antidote.

In those who hear the Word of God and keep it, the love of God is “perfected” or made perfect or complete, wanting nothing or brought to maturity in them. To be “perfected” is to be brought to a full end. 1 John 4:18 provides the basis for love being the perfect antidote to fear:

There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love.

When an individual is “perfected in love” and walks in or demonstrates that love, there is no room for fear. The love of God is the key that releases each believer from the bondage of this “self-imposed prison” from which Christ came to set the captives free.

Self-imposed Prison

“Fear is a self-imposed prison that will keep you

 from becoming what God intends for you to be.”

 Rick Warren

 

There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear,

 because fear involves torment. But he who fears

 has not been made perfect in love.

I John 4:18

 

This self-imposed prison, not made with bars of steel,

Nor formed with bricks, yet each subtly constructed wall

Restricts the mind, scars the soul and cripples the will

And impounds us to a state of constant free fall.

Held captive by past mistakes that seek to instill

Fear: this deadly acronym binds, confines the heart,

So disguised as “false evidence appearing real”

Keeps us from being all God intends us to be.

But Christ, our sovereign Lord, pardoned each life sentence,

Commuted penalties, declaring not guilty.

With his blood, having blotted out every offense,

Displayed undying love: key to set captives free.

Pure freedom to serve awaits those with ears to hear,

For perfected love destroys all walls built by fear.

The essence of the message for today is “Have no fear—walk in love.” We conclude as Whitley Phipps offers this encouraging musical reminder: “No Need to Fear”

No need to fear

October 2, 2015

Proverbs-29--25The Verse of the Day for October 2, 2015 reminds us of the crippling nature of fear:

Proverbs 29:25 (KJV):

The fear of man bringeth a snare: but whoso putteth his trust in the Lord shall be safe

The Amplified Bible renders the verse this way:

The fear of man brings a snare, but whoever trusts in and puts his confidence in the Lord will be exalted and safe.

In previous blog entries related to fear and its debilitating consequences, we find these comments:

We all recognize that fear is a common and natural emotional response to potential danger, but if not properly addressed, it can become a deadly emotion with serious consequences. Excessive fear can become crippling and impact our daily lives in a negative way. Unbridled fear is a toxic emotion that limits and inhibits.

It has been said that fear is the only thing that defeats the promises of God. Pastor Rick Warren describes fear           as “. . . a self-imposed prison that will keep you from becoming what God intends for you to be.”

The Bible addresses the issue of fear with numerous reminders that as believers we are not to fear. The comforting exhortation to “fear not” or “do not fear” occurs 365 times in the Bible, indicating a daily memo from God to have no fear.

Isaiah 8:12 offers this powerful reminder:

 Say ye not, A confederacy, to all them to whom this people shall say, A confederacy; neither fear ye their fear, nor be afraid.

Recall the words of Franklin Delano Roosevelt in his first inaugural address:

”So, first of all, let me assert my firm belief that the only thing we have to fear is fear itself—nameless,

unreasoning, unjustified terror which paralyzes needed efforts to convert retreat into advance.“

We also find great comfort in Isaiah 41: 10, 13 from which the lyrics to another song are taken, offering these words of encouragement:

Do Not Fear

Do not fear, for I am with you;

Do not be afraid, for I am your God;

I will strengthen you, I will help you,

I will strengthen you, I will help you,

I will strengthen you, I will help you,

I will uphold you with my victorious right hand.

For I, the LORD your God, hold your right hand;

It is I who say to you, “Do not fear, I will help you.”

In 1 John 4:18 we find the perfect antidote to fear:

There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love.

When an individual is “perfected in love” and walks in or demonstrates that love, there no room for fear. The love of God is the key that releases each believer from the bondage of this “self-imposed prison” from which Christ came to set the captives free.

In those who hear the Word of God and keep it, the love of God is “perfected” or made perfect or complete, wanting in nothing or brought to maturity in them. To be “perfected” is to be brought to a full end.

The love of God is “perfected” or made complete or full in us when we walk in the steps of Jesus Christ, the ultimate example of perfect love. When an individual is “perfected in love” and walks in or demonstrates that love, there no room for fear.

I recall learning about the love of God as a counteractant to fear in a very simple yet profound way. One of the first books that my wife and I used to teach our daughters about our Heavenly Father was My Little Golden Book about God. This was a kind of primer for our daughters who memorized the words and associated them with the illustrations long before they could actually “read.” Some of the most cherished lines were these words which closed out the small book:

“Do not fear. I am here. And I love you, my dear. Close your eyes and sleep tight. For tomorrow will be bright.

All is well, dear child. Good night.”

This simple response encourages all children of God to have no fear, for God is ever present, and He continues to say, “And I love you, my dear.”

As followers of the Lord Jesus Christ, when we walk in the power of God’s love, we will recognize a notable change, not only in our own lives individually, but we will also experience fruitfulness and favor upon our land, even in the midst of famine. The following poem expresses the two-fold blessing that God generates:

Perfected Love

Jehovah, creator, author and finisher,

Who initiates to nourish perfected love;

Ever-abiding source and resource, publisher

Of declarations of genuine love to move

The soul of man to return to the place of his first

Love, the Beloved, whose heart overflows to give,

For only this passion can satisfy our thirst,

As you refresh us and teach us how we should live.

You have pledged your love through a sacred covenant.

If we maintain our vows of love, you will sustain

Our souls and feed us so that we shall never want.

You will shower with mercy as the gentle rain

And will bless and multiply the fruit of our land

With bountiful supply from your gracious right hand.

We close this entry with the comforting words of Wintley Phipps who sings, “No Need to Fear”:

Have no fear: Remember love

July 19, 2015

Isaiah 41--10The Verse of the Day for July 19, 2015 comes from Isaiah 41:10 (NLT):

Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand.

This encouraging word is one of 365 scriptures that address the issue of fear, providing yet another reminder to believers: “Do not fear.” We could view this particular verse as one of our daily memos from God to have no fear.

We also find great comfort when we add verse 13 of Isaiah 42, from which the lyrics to a Scripture Memory Song are taken, offering these words of encouragement:

Do Not Fear

Do not fear, for I am with you; do not be afraid, for I am your God;

I will strengthen you, I will help you,

I will strengthen you, I will help you,

I will strengthen you, I will help you,

I will uphold you with my victorious right hand.

For I, the LORD your God, hold your right hand;

It is I who say to you, “Do not fear; I will help you.”

In previous blog entries I have commented on fear and its impact upon our lives as believers. Recognizably, fear is a common and natural emotional response to potential danger, but if not properly addressed, it can become a deadly emotion with serious consequences. Excessive fear can become crippling and impact our daily lives in a negative way. Unbridled fear is a toxic emotion that can run rampant to limit and inhibit.

As with each of the toxic emotions of life, we want to counteract their harmful effects with the proper remedy. When we encounter a negative emotion, we are encouraged to move in the opposite spirit. In terms of responding to fear in light of moving in the opposite spirit, we find that love is the perfect antidote.

The book of I John reveals the “perfect” connection between fear and love, particularly in 1 John 2:5

But whoever keeps His word, in him truly the love of God is perfected in him. By this know that we are in Him. [NKJV]

In those who hear the Word of God and keep it, the love of God is “perfected” or made perfect or complete, wanting nothing or brought to maturity in them. To be “perfected” is to be brought to a full end. This concept is further discussed in chapter 4 verse 12 which reminds us:

No one has seen God at any time. If we love one another, God abides in us, and His love has been perfected in us.

Verses 13-16 go on to explain just how the love of God comes to abide or remain or dwell within us:

By this we know that we abide in Him, and He in us, because He has given us of His Spirit.

And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent the Son as Savior of the world.

Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God.

And we have known and believed the love that God has for us. God is love, and he who abides in love abides in God, and God in him.

The love of God is “perfected” or made complete or full in us when we walk in the steps of Jesus Christ, the ultimate example of perfect love. Verse 17 elaborates on this reality:

Love has been perfected among us in this: that we may have boldness in the Day of Judgment; because as He is, so are we in this world

Verse 18 provides the basis for love being the perfect antidote to fear:

There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love.

We are familiar with the acronym used to describe fear: False Evidence Appearing Real. A few years ago, a dear friend and sister in Christ shared another acronym for fear: Forgetting Everything Already Realized. This designation further inspired this line from a poem also offering another acrostic definition of love: Love Overcomes: this Victory we have Every time. Both descriptions are a part of this poem:

Have No Fear: Remember Love

With gratitude to Victoria Dunn

There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear:

because fear involves torment. He who fears

has not been made perfect in love

I John 4:18

Forgetting Everything Already Realized,

Everything God performs He does with excellence.

Already set before us is every promise.

Realized with each sunrise this eternal truth:

Love Overcomes: this Victory we have Every time.

Only believe, knowing love energizes faith.

Victory is ours each time we trust God and believe,

Ever mindful that perfect love casts out all fear.

God cannot love us more and will not love us any less.

May we never forget but always remember:

Despite the storms and fiery trials, we will not fear,

Knowing nothing can separate us from God’s love.

When an individual is “perfected in love” and walks in or demonstrates that love, there is no room for fear. The love of God is the key that releases each believer from the bondage of fear, from which Christ came to set the captives free.

The essence of the message for today is “Have no fear—walk in love.” We conclude as Whitley Phipps offers this encouraging musical reminder: “No Need to Fear”

Do not fear but trust

October 2, 2014

Proverbs-29--25

The Verse of the Day for October 2, 2014 was the inspiration for the following blog entry which was originally posted a year ago. This entry provided a powerful reminder of the negative consequence of fear, and it has been modified and re-posted below:

Listen to Proverbs 29:25 read in five different versions:

Proverbs 29:25 is rendered in the Amplified Bible in this way:

The fear of man brings a snare, but whoever leans on, trusts in, and puts his confidence in the Lord is safe and set on high.

Fear is a tool of the Enemy used as a barrier to stifle our confidence in God, as it attempts to limit our access to the Father’s throne of grace. Satan tries to instill fear in believers in the same way that a ferocious lion roars, seeking to instill fear that paralyzes its victim. We find a similar picture of the ways of our adversary in I Peter 5:8:

Be well balanced (temperate, sober of mind), be vigilant and cautious at all times; for that enemy of yours, the devil, roams around like a lion roaring [in fierce hunger], seeking someone to seize upon and devour. [Amplified Bible]

It has been said that fear is the only thing that defeats the promises of God. Pastor Rick Warren describes fear           as “. . . a self-imposed prison.” His comment was the inspiration, in part, for the following poem:

Self-imposed Prison

“Fear is a self-imposed prison that will keep you

from becoming what God intends for you to be.”

Rick Warren

 

There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear,

because fear involves torment. But he who fears

has not been made perfect in love.

I John 4:18

 

This self-imposed prison, not made with bars of steel,

Nor formed with bricks, yet each subtly constructed wall

Restricts the mind, scars the soul and cripples the will

And impounds us to a state of constant free fall.

Held captive by past mistakes that seek to instill

Fear: this deadly acronym binds, confines the heart,

So disguised as “false evidence appearing real”

Keeps us from being all God intends us to be.

But Christ, our sovereign Lord, pardoned each life sentence,

Commuted penalties, declaring not guilty.

With his blood, having blotted out every offense,

Displayed undying love: key to set captives free.

Pure freedom to serve awaits those with ears to hear,

For perfected love destroys all walls built by fear.

 

The Bible addresses the issue of fear with numerous reminders that as believers we are not to fear. The comforting exhortation to “fear not” or “do not fear” occurs 365 times in the Bible, indicating a daily memo from God that we are to have no fear.

We also find great comfort in Isaiah 41:10, 13 from which the lyrics to another song are taken, offering these words of encouragement:

 Do Not Fear

Do not fear, for I am with you; do not be afraid, for I am your God;

I will strengthen you, I will help you,

I will strengthen you, I will help you,

I will strengthen you, I will help you,

I will uphold you with my victorious right hand.

 

For I, the LORD your God, hold your right hand;

It is I who say to you, “Do not fear, I will help you.”

“Do not fear, I will help you.”

“Do not fear, I will help you.”

Here is a recording of the passage from Isaiah 41:

 

The Verse of the Day and other scriptures remind us that fear is a snare that believers should avoid, as they trust in the Lord.

We conclude with Janet Isaac Morrison, who offers a Song of Comfort—“You Don’t Have to Fear.”

 

Be strong and courageous

March 4, 2014

Joshua-1 9 2Quite providentially, the Verse of the Day for March 5 seems to follow-up perfectly the word of exhortation that was posted yesterday on the only day of the year that is a command: March 4th. Today the words spoken to Joshua resonate within our lives as well:

Joshua 1:9 (NIV):

Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”

The blog entry posted a year ago today is revised and re-posted below:

In the midst of perilous times, circumstances that are said “difficult to deal with,” we often become intimidated. The pressures of life and the challenges that confront us try to make us timid and fearful. Many times the adversary of our souls seeks to make us feel inferior or not up to the task, assignment or purpose that God has inspired us to pursue.

Dr. Tom Edwards in his workshop “Moving My Life Forward,” has a section that exhorts believers: “Don’t D.I.E. in the transition,” as we move into the next phase of our journey of discovery of God’s ultimate design and purpose for our lives. He uses D.I.E. as an acronym meaning “Discouraged, Intimidated, Entangled”

In each instance we are exhorted to move in the opposite spirit and respond with an offensive move to counter each negative emotion with a positive reminder from the Word of God.

The Verse of the Day from Joshua 1:9 is a great source of encouragement in midst of circumstances whereby we could be discouraged. Just as Joshua felt discouraged when he was confronted with the task of leading the Children of Israel into the Promised Land after the death of Moses, we also have similar concerns, as we move in transition into the next phase of our destiny in God.

Another related passage reminds believers to have no fear:

Isaiah 41:10, 13

10 Fear not, for I am with you;
Be not dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you,
Yes, I will help you,
I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.’

For I, the Lord your God, will hold your right hand,
Saying to you, ‘Fear not, I will help you.’

These particular verses remind us that as believers we are not to fear. The comforting exhortation to “fear not” or “do not fear” occurs 365 times in the Bible, indicating a daily memo from God that we are to have no fear.

When we encounter similarly stressful situations that cause us to respond in fear, we are to be encouraged to seek the strength to overcome any obstacle that attempts to block our path to success.

We counter those attempts that seek to generate fear with reminders from the Word of God that instead of becoming more fearful and afraid, we are to be “fearless”:  we should be bold, brave, composed, confident, unafraid, valiant, and courageous.

We find strength and encouragement in the Don Moen song: “Be Strong and Take Courage.”

One more reminder: Do not fear

October 2, 2013

Proverbs_29-25

The Verse of the Day for October 2, 2013 is a powerful reminder of the negative consequence of fear:

The verse is rendered in the Amplified Bible in this way:

The fear of man brings a snare, but whoever leans on, trusts in, and puts his confidence in the Lord is safe and set on high.

Fear is a tool of the Enemy used as a barrier to stifle our confidence in God, as it attempts to limit our access to the Father’s throne of grace. Satan tries to instill fear in believers in the same way that a ferocious lion roars, seeking to instill fear that paralyzes its victim. We find a similar picture of the ways of our adversary in I Peter 5:8:

Be well balanced (temperate, sober of mind), be vigilant and cautious at all times; for that enemy of yours, the devil, roams around like a lion roaring [in fierce hunger], seeking someone to seize upon and devour. [Amplified Bible]

It has been said that fear is the only thing that defeats the promises of God. Pastor Rick Warren describes fear    as “. . . a self-imposed prison.” His comment was the inspiration, in part, for the following poem:

Self-imposed Prison

“Fear is a self-imposed prison that will keep you

 from becoming what God intends for you to be.”

Rick Warren

 

There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear,

 because fear involves torment. But he who fears

 has not been made perfect in love.

 I John 4:18

 

This self-imposed prison, not made with bars of steel,

Nor formed with bricks, yet each subtly constructed wall

Restricts the mind, scars the soul and cripples the will

And impounds us to a state of constant free fall.

Held captive by past mistakes that seek to instill

Fear: this deadly acronym binds, confines the heart,

So disguised as “false evidence appearing real”

Keeps us from being all God intends us to be.

But Christ, our sovereign Lord, pardoned each life sentence,

Commuted penalties, declaring not guilty.

With his blood, having blotted out every offense,

Displayed undying love: key to set captives free.

Pure freedom to serve awaits those with ears to hear,

For perfected love destroys all walls built by fear.

The Bible addresses the issue of fear with numerous reminders that as believers we are not to fear. The comforting exhortation to “fear not” or “do not fear” occurs 365 times in the Bible, indicating a daily memo from God that we are to have no fear.

We also find great comfort in Isaiah 41:10, 13 from which the lyricsw to another song are taken, offering these words of encouragement:

 Do Not Fear

Do not fear, for I am with you; do not be afraid, for I am your God;

I will strengthen you, I will help you,

I will strengthen you, I will help you,

I will strengthen you, I will help you,

I will uphold you with my victorious right hand.

 

For I, the LORD your God, hold your right hand;

It is I who say to you, “Do not fear, I will help you.”

“Do not fear, I will help you.”

“Do not fear, I will help you.”

 

Here is a recording of the passage from Isaiah 41:

The Verse of the Day and other scriptures remind us that fear is a snare that believers should avoid, as they trust in the Lord.

We conclude with Janet Isaac Morrison, who offers a Song of Comfort—“You Don’t Have to Fear.”