Moses said to the people, “Do not be afraid, God has come to test you, so that the fear of God will be with you to keep you from sinning.” Exodus 20:20
Sin has a feared enemy: the fear of God. The fear of God is not the only a remedy for sin, but it is a potent vaccine. Sin and the fear of God cannot coexist for long. The fear of God extinguishes sin’s combustible character. The fear of God repels sin and keeps it at bay. This is why the devil attempts to devalue the fear of God. He knows if we do not take seriously the fear factor of our heavenly Father, then we are exposed to sin’s influence. Without the fear of God, we are set up for serious sin problems. Cultures crumble without a moral fabric, flush with the fear of God. Families fall into severe dysfunction when the fear of God is not lived out or understood. Individual lives lose their meaning and purpose when the fear of God is placed on the shelf.
God’s remedy for sin is fear of Him.
The fear of God is a force to be reckoned with by all who come in contact with their Creator. We can dismiss it as an old-fashioned doctrine (though it has been around since Adam and Eve), or we can embrace it as necessary for successful living. When we fear God, we find God. When we fear God, we love God and He loves us. When we fear God, we understand that some things are off limits and we avoid them. When we fear God, we trust God. When we fear God, we run toward God in worship and away from sin in disgust. The fear of God is our friend, and it enhances our friendship with our heavenly Father.
“No one is greater in this house than I am. My master has withheld nothing from me except you, because you are his wife. How then could I do such a wicked thing and sin against God?” And though she spoke to Joseph day after day, he refused to go to bed with her or even be with her” (Genesis 39:9-10).
Therefore, take the commands of God seriously. The Ten Commandments are rules for how to express our fear of God. An adulterer sins because somewhere along the way, the fear of God did not matter to him anymore. The idols of materialism can consume us when we forget to fear God and instead, worship at the altar of financial gain. The fear of God encourages children to honor their parents, and it positions parents to lovingly raise their children. The fear of God is our fortress against the devil’s onslaught. We are motivated to put on the full armor of God, knowing we are no match in our own strength to defeat the devil. The fear of God is not a mindless and cold obedience. On the contrary, it is thoughtful, prayerful, and full of joy. It sees the opportunity to obey God as an honor.
The trials and tribulations you may be facing are not meant to create an unhealthy fear that cringes before Christ, but rather a healthy fear that trusts Him in spite of this test of your faith. Do not allow the sorrow of loss or the success of gain to keep you from fearing God. When you focus on our heavenly Father in worship and prayer, you can’t help but fear Him. His character invites the fear of His followers. Fear Him, and you will be set free from sin and self. Ego exits when confronted by godly fear. Pride is not present with the fear of God. Listen to the Lord, and you will fear Him by faith. The secret to a life less sinful is to fear God. Invite Almighty God to inoculate you from sin with the vaccine of His fear. The fear of God is not a friend of sin.
“To fear the LORD is to hate evil; I hate pride and arrogance, evil behavior and perverse speech” (Proverbs 8:13).
Prayer: Heavenly Father, I adore, worship and fear Your Holy Name, keep my heart in holy awe, and grow my capacity to receive Your great love, in Jesus’ name, amen.
Application: What sin am I flirting with that I need to apply a dose of God’s fear to and flee from?
Related Readings: Proverbs 1:7; Leviticus 25:17; Acts 9:31; 2 Corinthians 5:11