As so many other spiritually relevant words, the word fear has also been added to the list of taboo, never to be uttered words in the Christian dialect. We outright loathe the word fear, we despise it, and any time someone has the wherewithal to speak of conducting ourselves in fear, it sparks outrage of the highest order, replete with angry letters and please to retract such hateful speech lest I risk the individual never supporting my ministry again.
We do not want to be confronted with the word fear, nor do we like to be told we ought to conduct ourselves in fear. We all want to be snowflakes and butterflies floating about the breeze with not a care in the world, doing as we please, until the day we are snatched up and pressed against the Almighty’s bosom, rewarded at infinitum for saying the sinner’s prayer, or better still walking up the isle at a crusade when we were in our teens.
For many years now there has been a negative connotation attached to the word fear in the church, and due to this negative connotation, many choose to overlook the scripture passages dealing with godly fear, or the fear of the Lord, not realizing there is such a thing as good fear.
We have lost the fear of the Lord and it is to our detriment. We have lost the fear of the Lord and as a direct result the church is bursting at the seams with lawlessness and sin.
If the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, then, logically speaking, the absence of the fear of the Lord is the absence of wisdom altogether. Or am I missing something? Why is it we have stopped preaching the fear of the Lord when it is the first step in one’s lifelong journey of attaining wisdom? Why is it we have stopped preaching the fear of the Lord when we are admonished, instructed, and encouraged to conduct ourselves throughout the time of our sojourning here with fear?
There is such a thing as a healthy fear. I have a healthy fear of rattlers, cobras, and pretty much anything that can kill me with one bite. Does this mean that I start to hyperventilate when I see one in a magazine or on television? No, but I don’t go around poking at them with sticks to see if they’ll try to bite me either. So there is such a thing as healthy fear, there is such a thing as good fear, but to delve into this, for most preachers today, would be too complicated, too time consuming, and we wouldn’t want anything cutting into their golf game now would we?
And so we are told that we cannot fear, or ought not to fear someone who loves us, even though I feared my mom quite a bit when I was doing something naughty and knew I was doing something naughty, even though I knew she loved me, and I loved her back.
If the fear of the Lord were not good and wholesome for us as believers, then God would not have insisted upon it. If the fear of the Lord were not positive, and did not lead us to a more mature and thoughtful walk with God, then it is highly doubtful the Bible would have encouraged us to conduct ourselves with fear.
The notion that we cannot love and fear someone at the same time is childish and asinine on its face, taking away from the complexity of human emotion and sentiment.
Recently I saw a video of someone who forgot the fear aspect of their relationship with a lion. Apparently, from what I understood, this lion was a house pet, had been for some time, and it was loved and treated as a member of the family. Time passed, and everyone in the family lost the healthy fear they ought to have had for a wild beast that stalks, hunts, and eats its prey, until the day it attacked a member of the family, ripping into his back as though he were a paper doll.
Bad things happen when you remove fear from the equation, things we otherwise could have avoided if only we’d possessed a healthy dose of fear.
With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.