Fear of the Lord

As I reflect on my walk with the Lord, one of the things that has hit me hard lately is the "fear of the Lord". We all have a tendency to get caught up in the whole "God is love" bit and seem to forget that God is also righteous and just. Without atonement by Jesus as our Savior, God will pass judgement on those who do not have that atonement. No one likes to think of their relatives or loved ones under the judgment of God. However, it is reality. We can't just claim Jesus is Lord and Savior, it must be lived out in our daily lives. Now, keep in mind, nothing we do can or will save us. Only Jesus can do that. However, if we are truly following Jesus, our lives will reflect the fruit of that. To be blunt, none of us even deserve to be saved. We are all deserving of hell and damnation. However, because God loved us so much, He provided a way to atone for the sin that plagues us. So the question then becomes, why in the world would we want to live in it? Obedience to God means letting go of what we think makes us happy to pursue the things of God that will truly make us joyful.

All of this to come to this conclusion: I think we've lost the healthy fear of the Lord. We've lost that fear of hell and damnation. Remember, we all deserve it. Not one of us deserves salvation, forgiveness, grace and mercy provided for by Christ. There's nothing wrong with having a healthy fear of the Lord. Remember,

Don't fear those who kill the body but are not able to kill the soul; rather, fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.
Matthew 10:28
HCSB

Fear God. The one who has the power over death in this life - and the next. The thought of Hell should stir some uneasy feelings. If it doesn't, I'd be seriously worried about you. If there's no fear of God, Hell is just another concept that is blown off, dismissed or think that it doesn't apply to you. It does. Even if you've been saved for years, we should still recognize the fact that there was a time when we were headed there. We must never lose that fear of the Lord. I can't tell you exactly what the Pharisees were feeling, but I can pretty well bet they thought they were the last ones that would end up there. I'm not saying they are or aren't; I'm simply saying that Jesus confronted them on more than one occasion. I'd say they didn't have a healthy fear of the Lord. They didn't fear Hell. They were simply over-confident - and that was their weakness. I'd push the envelope to say that the same holds true for the Christians in America. We're over-confident. We have an entitlement problem. In one way or another, some people feel as if they're entitled to their salvation in Christ. If we all got what we deserved, we'd all end up ablaze in Hell.

I'd like to urge you to take a moment and reflect on the fact that no one deserves salvation. It is a gift offered by Christ and it is only by the grace of God we are all not simply thrown into the pits of Hell - because we all certainly deserve it. If those thoughts don't make you bow a knee and praise God for His gift of salvation, grace, mercy and forgiveness through our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, I'm not sure what will. God be with you as you walk with Him and may He draw you nearer to Himself.

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