Freedom from Fear as Worship

December 3, 2018

 

“Do not be afraid of sudden terror, nor of trouble from the wicked when it comes; for the LORD will be your confidence, and will keep your foot from being caught.” (Proverb 3:25-26)

 

One of satan’s favorite things, it seems, that many people experience is fear. Some people spend so much time in fear that it becomes almost a form of worship for them because they dedicate their time, effort and focus on being afraid.

 

In this Proverb, the Hebrew word translated as “afraid” is a form of the word used as “fear” in this famous verse: “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge...” (Proverb 1:7a).

 

That’s right, God equates obsession with fear to be worship-like.

 

Can you imagine satan wanting our worship? I can:

 

“Again, the devil took Him up on an exceedingly high mountain, and showed Him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory. And he said to Him, ‘All these things I will give You if You will fall down and worship me.’” (Matthew 4:8-9)

 

The devil tried to get Jesus to worship him. He wants the same from us and often uses fear, depression, drugs, alcohol, sexual sin….and on and on as focal points for worshiping him. We all fall for this from time to time.

 

How did Jesus handle this temptation from the devil?

 

“Then Jesus said to him, ‘Away with you, Satan! For it is written, 'YOU SHALL WORSHIP THE LORD YOUR GOD, AND HIM ONLY YOU SHALL SERVE.’” (Matthew 4:10)

 

Jesus resisted satan, spoke truth to him and refused to worship the devil.

 

This is recorded for us in Matthew as an example but we can see that this same God, Who NEVER changes, teaches the very same principle in today’s Proverb:

 

“Do not be afraid of sudden terror, nor of trouble from the wicked when it comes; for the LORD will be your confidence, and will keep your foot from being caught.” (Proverb 3:25-26)

 

The writer of this Proverb directs our focus AWAY from the reverent fear (worship) of terror (literally, any object of fear) or from trouble (literally, devastation) threatened by hurtful people….and TO the LORD instead.  

 

This amounts to a shift from a poor object of worship to the ONLY One worthy of our worship, our God.

 

Have you ever tried not to be tripped up in something by concentrating and repeating to yourself, “Don’t trip! Don’t trip! Don’t trip!”?

 

What usually happens in those situations? That’s right…we trip and fall over anyway! Why? It’s because we are focused on tripping and falling, so we do. In those situations we are, if you will, “worshiping” whatever it is eventually trips us up.

 

In these situations we are functioning as our own “god” because that’s what we trust to save us from tripping and, truly, we do not make very good gods.

 

The writer of this Proverb tells us that “the LORD will be your confidence (literally, the essence of our trust) and will keep your foot from being caught.” (Proverb 3:26)

 

In other words, the burden is on God to keep us safe. Our part is to let Him.

 

May we learn to consistently live in worship of and trust in the LORD.

 

May HE literally BE our confidence.

 

Amen.

 

 

Pastor Mike McInerney 

Mike McInerney Ministries, Inc.

Decatur, TX

© December 3, 2018

(For use with permission)

 

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