February 18, 2008

Are you afraid of God?

"The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom; all who follow His precepts have good understanding. To Him belongs eternal praise."
Psalms 111:10
Are you afraid of God or do you fear Him?
How do you think of God? Is it thunder and lightening with a thick cloud of smoke proceeded with a loud trumpet call and then His voice? This is the way that the Israelites experienced God when He descended to the top of Mount Sinai. They were so afraid that they told Moses to speak because they just knew that if God spoke to them that they would all die. (Exodus 19:16-19, 20:18-21) They all cowered in the presence of God expecting death. (Exodus 20:18-19) Is this how you view God? Do you cower in His presence expecting a lightening bolt to strike you dead because of your sin? Although our sin deserves death, God is not scary and we should not be afraid of Him but fear Him.
God is powerful, majestic and holy. Fearing God means that we acknowledge His holiness and power and that we honor Him. Moses first experienced God in a burning bush and was frightened but as their relationship became more intimate, God began to speak to Moses as a man speaks to his friend.
"the Lord would speak to Moses face to face, as a man speaks with his friend."
Exodus 33:11
At one point Moses asked God to "Show me your glory" (Ex 33:18) and God does just that by coming down in a cloud and standing there with Moses, proclaiming that he is, "the Lord, the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness, maintaining love to thousands, and forgiving wickedness." (Ex34:5-7)
Once Moses came to know God in a more intimate way, he became less afraid and more fearful because he was in awe of God's holiness. God does not want us to be afraid of Him. He desires to have an intimate relationship with each of us. We are to fear Him because we stand amazed at how awesome He is.
As we grow in our relationship with Him, He draws near to us and we are able to see His glory.
"Draw near to God and He will draw near to you."James 4:8
The more time you spend with God, the closer you will become. It's just like making a new friend. At first we are guarded and afraid. We are not sure if we can trust this person and we are afraid of being hurt but as we invest more time and more of our life in their life, we develop an intimacy in which we become closer and learn to confide and share in one another's lives. It is the same with God except with a few huge exceptions. He will never let you down or hurt you. He knows everything you do and say before it is done and He knows how your life will fall into place. He is the perfect friend to turn to because His advice will never be wrong. He loves us as we are and wants to be our loving and compassionate friend. He desires your fellowship and is waiting for you to meet with Him. If you find yourself being afraid of God, ask the Holy Spirit to help you yield to Him so that you may learn to trust Him and enjoy being in His presence.
Written by Nicole

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