Archive for September, 2021

“By mercy and truth iniquity is purged: and by the fear of the LORD men depart from evil… Now I rejoice, not that ye were made sorry, but that ye sorrowed to repentance: for ye were made sorry after a godly manner, that ye might receive damage by us in nothing. For godly sorrow worketh repentance to salvation not to be repented of: but the sorrow of the world worketh death.” (Proverbs 16:6 & Corinthians 7:9-10)

When you share the Gospel, at some point in your conversation you will want to lovingly convey the gist of those two Bible passages, i.e., the ‘Fear of the Lord’ and ‘Godly sorrow.’ I would venture to say that those who walk away from their faith in Jesus had little or no grasp of these critical doctrines. Think about it. The Bible repeatedly says that the fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, therefore it stands to reason that it should be one of the first things we communicate. It’s so vital that the non-believer understands the awesome power of God, that Jesus said this: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear Him (God) which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” (Matthew 10:28)

Of course ‘Godly sorrow’ goes hand-in-hand with this fear of the Lord. This unique sorrow comes about when we fully grasp that our sinful lifestyle is the path to hell. That notion should terrify a person. If it doesn’t, then they need to hear more about eternal damnation.

Frankly, we need to be more concerned with lovingly communicating these Gospel-basics and less concerned with leading someone in a half-hearted prayer. Christians-to-be have a right to full disclosure. It’s not our function to keep a smile on their face until we can convert them. It would be better if they walked away with a better understanding of the fear of the Lord then to side-step Biblical accuracy. It’s by mercy and truth iniquity is purged (Proverbs 16:6), therefore we are not at liberty to ignore these tenets.

Some will say that when the Bible speaks of fearing the Lord, it is speaking solely to respect and reverence. That my friends is not full disclosure. Of course we venerate God, but know also that the word in the Greek language also means ‘to put to flight by terrifying. Read Matthew 10:28 again!

Does this mean we’re to be terrified of the Lord or terrified of the consequences He put in place for those who idolize their sin? Does this mean we’re to flee from His awesomeness or flee from our sin and towards Him?

Did you have a dad who physically disciplined you? I did. Did I fear my dad if I was caught being bad? Yes I did. In my fear did I love him any less? No, I did not. I may have been mad at him, but I never loved him less. So it is with God the Father. We have been given the capacity to fear Him and love Him. It is the beginning of wisdom.

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