What about ‘Fear of the Lord’?

Those who fear the Lord have a secure fortress,
and for their children it will be a refuge.
The fear of the Lord is a fountain of life,
turning a person from the snares of death.
– Proverbs 14:26-27

I am always fascinated with the topic or phrase “fear of the Lord.” I was talking with someone not too long ago over lunch who said they had always been afraid of God until a profound experience in their life. Through clear teaching of the Bible they begin to understand that God deeply loves them and even sent His own Son, Jesus, to die for them. The fear started to dissipate.

What they were saying was that up till recently their religious experience had put a fear-filled distance between them and God. But now, they were experiencing a true intimacy with God that filtered through knowing Him as a loving Father.  This is a right and needed recovery!

But what about ‘fear of the Lord’?

How do we keep from a toothless over-familiarity with God that keeps ahold of an appropriate reverence for God that is spoken of throughout the Scriptures?

2 thoughts on “What about ‘Fear of the Lord’?

  1. I think fear of the Lord means to have respect for the Lord. To do this, feel the love of your Daddy while always remembering to be humbled by His greatness, which is beyond anything we can imagine.

    • Good point, Shelley. I like your expression of the tender love in tension with respect.

      I read this in a book after thinking about this more today:

      “It should be obvious that ‘the fear of the Lord’ does not mean being afraid of God. Rather, it is a reverential trust in God that makes us want to please and obey him. And yet there is a wholesome feeling of being sure that we do not disobey or displease him.” – Ralph Earle in “Evangelical Dictionary of Theology”

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