The Fear of the Lord

The Fear of the Lord

“But you shall fear the LORD your God,
and he will deliver you out of the hand of all your enemies”

2 Kings 17:39

Deliverance and freedom are fruits of the fear of the Lord. When we touch His Holy Presence there is a peace which settles over our entire being. Peace is the atmosphere of a life that is right with God. Through His Presence we come to know the wonder of the “fear of the Lord”. There is a sanctity which eradicates sin. The Seraphim (Fiery Ones) who stand before Him must shield their eyes from the majestic gaze of God. John in the Book of Revelation, who was walking in the fullness of the Spirit, fell down as one dead when he saw the Glorified Jesus. Men and women who do not fear God, do not know Him.

May He awaken us again to the benefits of knowing and walking in this wonder. In fearing Him we will once again discover the blessings associated with its beauty.

“The fear of the Lord is clean, enduring forever” (Psalm 19:9)
“Behold, the eye of the Lord is upon them that fear him” (Psalm 33:18)
“In the fear of the Lord is strong confidence” (Proverbs 14:26)
“The fear of the Lord is a fountain of life” (Proverbs 14:27)

SELAH
(Pause and Consider)

“Then had the churches rest throughout all Judæa and Galilee and Samaria, and were edified; and walking in the fear of the Lord, and in the comfort of the Holy Ghost, were multiplied
Acts 9:31

The early Church walked and lived in the atmosphere of the fear of the Lord. They knew well the consequences of the actions of Ananias and Sapphira. They understood His Holiness and Fire and walked accordingly.

God gives us the key to “understanding the Fear of the Lord”.

“Yea, if thou criest after knowledge, and liftest up thy voice for understanding; If thou seekest her as silver, and searchest for her as for hid treasures; THEN shalt thou understand the fear of the Lord, and find the knowledge of God”
Proverbs 2:3-5

The understanding of the fear of the Lord belongs to those who have sought for it and have discovered it riches.

“By humility and the fear of the Lord
are riches, and honour, and life”
Proverbs 22:4

Brian Troxel

Quote for Today – Henry Scougal

Quote for Today

“God hath long contended with a stubborn world, and thrown down many a blessing upon them; and when all his other gifts could not prevail, He at last made a gift of Himself “
– Henry Scougal

Wanting All of God – E.M. Bounds

Wanting All of God

“Praying people want all that God has in store for them. They are not satisfied with a low religious life; superficial, vague and indefinite.
     Praying people constantly strive for more. They are not after being saved from some sin, but being saved from all sin, both inward and outward.
     They are not only after deliverance from sinning, but from sin itself, from its being, its power and its pollution. They are after holiness of heart and life.”
– E.M. Bounds

Grace and Our Responsibility

Grace and Our Responsibility

“Looking diligently
lest any man fail of the grace of God”
Hebrews 12:15

In all of God’s benevolence to mankind there ought to be nothing more striking and more humbling to us than His ministration of Grace. The sheer weight of its power and wonder is incomprehensible in light of our undeserving condition. Throughout the scriptures we see this God pouring out his benefits to countless people, tribes and nations. The intended purpose of the grace given is not always fulfilled within those to whom it is given.

In his epistle to the Corinthians, Paul clearly declares this powerful truth: the grace of God requires the response of His People. We must see this high and holy truth. We are made “partakers” of the grace of God; not just recipients. Grace is always given with the intent that we grow, develop and become more like Him. Grace is a resource of God Himself; the life blood of His being. It is the pouring out of Himself upon the lost, the wayward and the aspiring child of God. In its flow men and women are transformed from their selfish, barren, fruitless and impotent living. Grace is the very power of heaven invading and empowering His Own to arise and walk in the strength of our God.

“Moreover, brethren, I would not that ye should be ignorant, how that all our fathers were under the cloud, and all passed through the sea; and were all baptized unto Moses in the cloud and in the sea; and did all eat the same spiritual meat; and did all drink the same spiritual drink: for they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them: and that Rock was Christ…”
1 Corinthians 10:1-4

We read here of the incredible grace of God given to His people. We see the rich provisions of food and water and their spiritual representations! God provided ALL that was necessary for their journey in the Wilderness and to enter into the Land of Promise. What was God’s estimation of their walk?

“But with many of them God was not well pleased:
for they were overthrown in the wilderness”
1 Corinthians 10:5

This is God’s testimony of a people who had been given grace upon grace! Why does Paul (under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit) write this to the Church at Corinth?

6. “Now these things were OUR examples, to the intent we should not lust after evil things, as they also lusted.
7 Neither be ye idolaters, as were some of them; as it is written, The people sat down to eat and drink, and rose up to play.
8 Neither let us commit fornication, as some of them committed, and fell in one day three and twenty thousand.
9 Neither let us tempt Christ, as some of them also tempted, and were destroyed of serpents.
10 Neither murmur ye, as some of them also murmured, and were destroyed of the destroyer.”
1 Corinthians 10:6-10

Paul’s final exhortation concerning this powerful truth:

“Now all these things happened unto them for ensamples:
and they are written for OUR admonition,
upon whom the ends of the world are come”
1 Corinthians 10:11

To whom is this vital truth given? To us, those “upon whom the ends of the world are come”!

It is vital that we take heed to the Word of God in our day. It is not a day for us to glory in the grace given, but to give Him glory, by allowing the grace given to work in us that which pleases Him in our daily life!

How foolish is the notion that men cannot fail the grace of God; that men cannot fall far short of God’s intention for our lives. How detrimental for His people to consider that God is pleased with such.

“Looking diligently
lest any man fail of the grace of God
Hebrews 12:15

There is a diligence born out of the knowledge of the truth. Grace is given with purpose and design and the more we have received of it the more we are held accountable unto Him who is the giver of all good things.

“We then, as workers together with him,
beseech you also that ye receive not the grace of God in vain
2 Corinthians 6:1

Brian Troxel

Thought for Today – Charles Spurgeon

Thought for Today

“For he satisfieth the longing soul,
and filleth the hungry soul with goodness”
Psalm 107:9

“It is well to have longing, and the more intense they are the better. The Lord will satisfy soul-longings, however great and all absorbing they may be. Let us greatly long, for the Lord will greatly give. We are never in a right state of mind when we are contented with ourselves, and are free from longings. Desires for more grace and groanings which cannot be uttered, are growing pains, and we should wish to feel them more and more. Blessed Spirit make us sigh and cry after better things and for more of the best things.

Hunger is by no means a pleasant sensation. Yet blessed are they that hunger and thirst after righteousness. Such persons shall not only have their hunger relieved with a little food, but they shall be filled”
– Charles Spurgeon

“Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst
after righteousness: for they shall be filled”
Matthew 5:6

Spiritual Warfare – Obtaining God’s Promises

SPIRITUAL WARFARE

Obtaining God’s Promises

“This charge* I commit unto thee, son Timothy,
according to the prophecies which went before on thee,
that thou by them mightest war a good warfare…”
1 Timothy 1:18

The word translated “charge” in the above scripture is actually a command in the Greek (see note below). The promises of God are given to His own that, by receiving them, they may war rightly to see them come to pass. The promises of God require warfare to be real and vital in the lives of His own.

“And if a man also strive for masteries,
yet is he not crowned, except he strive lawfully
2 Timothy 2:5

In his second letter to Timothy, Paul uses the Olympic athlete as an example to observe and be instructed thereby. Paul follows this statement declaring:

“Consider what I say;
and the Lord give thee understanding in all things”
2 Timothy 2:7

There is a striving and a contending for the crown of the call of God upon us. Few of God’s people comprehend the strenuous effort required in “laying hold” of the prize of our call in Christ. The apathy and the complacency of many is a source of suffering for those who know God. The sum of all the energies of Paul were expended in his pursuit of laying hold of God.

“Every man who strives in the games exercises self-control in all things. Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown, but we an incorruptible. I therefore run like that, not aimlessly. I fight like that, not beating the air, but I beat my body and bring it into submission, lest by any means, after I have preached to others, I myself should be rejected”. (“Unapproved, unworthy, spurious, worthless. In a passive sense meaning disapproved”)
1 Corinthians 9:25-27

Paul says he fights like that! He is fully involved (spirit, soul and body) in the fight of faith. He has one resolve in the entirety of his being. He is fully persuaded in his press to obtain the Crown OF Life to which he has been called. His life bears evidence of the faith and fire of God burning within! There is no value in glibly quoting the scriptures if we lack the evidence of faith in our daily life. How it must weary God that there be contentment in the quoting of scriptures without the corresponding evidence; but rather families out of order, poorly handled finances, lives lived in pursuit of other things, and an inability to impart the power of faith into the lives of those around them. Paul, in the passion of the Spirit of God, cries out:

“So run, that ye may obtain”!
1 Corinthians 9:24

The Christian life is not about just believing, it is about obtaining!

“Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible”
1 Cor. 9:25

“For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ”. 1 Thess. 5:9

“Whereunto he called you by our gospel, to the obtaining of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ”
2 Thess. 2:14 (what a staggering call)

“Therefore I endure all things for the elect’s sakes, that they may also obtain the salvation which is in Christ Jesus…”
2 Timothy 2:10

“For by it the elders obtained a good report”
Hebrews 11:2

“Who through faith subdued kingdoms, wrought righteousness, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions…”
Hebrews 11:33

The list is too long and too precious to be listed without prayerful consideration of each one as a powerful truth. I am stirred this morning as I consider the grace and mercy of God, and the ethos of a generation who know little of the cost nor the power associated with the call of God. There is a generation who find contentment in words rather than a life of godliness.

“Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ
Philippians 3:8

How few understand the cry of Paul’s heart, “that I may win Christ”. To those who do not pursue the person of Christ, this statement will be an enigma and a mystery. There will be an inability to see the pure truth contained within its wonder. The secret of the Lord is with them who fear Him, and it is to such that He reveals His Covenant (Psalm 25:14). The power of this Word ignites a hunger within and a thirst which cannot be quenched. Oh, the folly of words without fire, purpose without passion, and a powerless Christian gospel which does not birth a singular pursuit of Him! Life lived outside the grip of the fire of His love is meaningless and vain. He is the One Object of our faith; He is the Pearl of Great Price; He is the Fire which burns within.

“As the hart panteth after the water brooks, so panteth my soul after thee, O God. My soul thirsteth for God, for the living God: when shall I come and appear before God?”
Psalm 42:1-3

Those who bear His Fire
Shine forth His Light;
For the Light without
Is evidence of the Fire within.

Σ

“But his word was in mine heart as a burning fire shut up in my bones, and I was weary with forbearing, and I could not stay”
Jeremiah 20:9

*NOTE:
parangelia (G3852), “a proclamation, a command or commandment,” is strictly used of commands received from a superior and transmitted to others. It is rendered “charge” in Act 16:24; 1Th 4:2, RV (where the word is in the plural); 1Ti 1:5 (RV) and 1Ti 1:18. In Act 5:28 the lit. meaning is “Did we not charge you with a charge? Vines New Testament Dictionary

Brian Troxel

Quote for Today – E.M. Bounds

Quote for Today

“If we want to pray well and get the most of our praying, we must look at our obedience. This brings us closer to God. Disobedient living produces extremely poor praying. No man can pray – really pray – who does not obey.
Our will must be surrendered to God as a primary condition to all successful praying. Everything about us receives its coloring from our innermost character. Our will determines our character and controls our conduct.”
E.M. Bounds

A Testimony of George Fox

A Testimony Of Life

“Now, as I went towards Nottingham, on a Firstday, in the morning, going with Friends to a meeting there, when I came on the top of a hill in sight of the town, I espied the great steeple-house. And the Lord said unto me, ‘Thou must go cry against yonder great idol, and against the worshippers therein.’

“I said nothing of this to the Friends that were with me, but went on with them to the meeting, where the mighty power of the Lord was amongst us; in which I left Friends sitting in the meeting, and went away to the steeple-house. When I came there, all the people looked like fallow ground; and the priest (like a great lump of earth) stood in his pulpit above.

“He took for his text these words of Peter, ‘We have also a more sure Word of prophecy, whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day-star arise in your hearts.’ And he told the people that this was the Scriptures, by which they were to try all doctrines, religions, and opinions.

“Now the Lord’s power was so mighty upon me, and so strong in me, that I could not hold, but was made to cry out and say, ‘Oh, no; it is not the Scriptures!’ and I told them what it was, namely, the Holy Spirit, by which the holy men of God gave forth the Scriptures, whereby opinions, religions, and judgments were to be tried; for it led into all truth, and so gave the knowledge of all truth. The Jews had the Scriptures, and yet resisted the Holy Ghost, and rejected Christ, the bright morning star. They persecuted Christ and His apostles, and took upon them to try their doctrines by the Scriptures; but they erred in judgment, and did not try them aright, because they tried without the Holy Ghost.
.
“As I spoke thus amongst them, the officers came and took me away, and put me into a nasty, stinking prison; the smell whereof got so into my nose and throat that it very much annoyed me.

“But that day the Lord’s power sounded so in their ears that they were amazed at the voice, and could not get it out of their ears for some time after, they were so reached by the Lord’s power in the steeple-house. At night they took me before the mayor, aldermen, and sheriffs of the town; and when I was brought before them, the mayor was in a peevish, fretful temper, but the Lord’s power allayed him. They examined me at large; and I told them how the Lord had moved me to come. After some discourse between them and me, they sent me back to prison again. Some time after, the head sheriff, whose name was John Reckless, sent for me to his house. When I came in, his wife met me in the hall, and said, ‘Salvation is come to our house.’ She took me by the hand, and was much wrought upon by the power of the Lord God; and her husband, and children, and servants were much changed, for the power of the Lord wrought upon them.

“I lodged at the sheriff’s, and great meetings we had in his house. Some persons of considerable condition in the world came to them, and the Lord’s power appeared eminently amongst them.”
– George Fox
(Reblogged from Tim Shey’s Website)

Σ

“Beloved, believe not every spirit,
but try the spirits whether they are of God:
because many false prophets are gone out into the world”
1 John 4:1

Quote for Today – Herman Bavinck

Quote for Today

“A theologian is a person who makes bold to speak about God because he speaks out of God and through God. To profess theology is to do holy work. It is a priestly ministration in the house of the Lord. It is itself a service of worship, a consecration of mind and heart to the honour of His name”
– Herman Bavinck