Godis a Trinity. There is only one God, but in the unity, there are three eternal, distinct yet equal beings.
~ C.C. RYRIE Wilmington’s Guide to the Bible. 1984
“He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made. In Him was life, and the life was the light of men. And the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it.” John 1:2-5 NKJV
The Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, are always with us. In the beginning He, Jesus, was with God, long before they created the earth and all there is in it. Long before Christ came to earth to free us of our sins and demonstrate our walk. Long before God breathed life into us. Long before we came out of our mother’s womb. In Him, Jesus Christ was and is life and the light of men. This light shines down on us and because Christ was crucified, bore our sins, rose, and returned to heaven on the third day leaving His spirit to dwell in each of us; his light dwells in us, not just around us. The Holy Spirit completes the Trinity and as a result believer’s have been delivered from sin and its consequences through Salvation.
So go forth this day in the light. Be the bellwether of good cheer. Be kind, thoughtful, trustworthy, honest, respectful and in control. Do not allow the woes of the day affect you and beat you down. Speak to all things saying, “this is the day the Lord has made, I am glad and will rejoice in it.” Psalms 118:24 (paraphrased)
In closing, I want to impress that it is important to teach our children what the scriptures mean and how they impact their lives day-to-day. It is never to early to begin digesting the Word and applying it to our lives. Those who spend time teaching their children the Word are preparing Young Christian Warriors to become mature adults sharing the light in an uncertain world.
Worldly terms do not always express the same meaning when used biblically. Fear is one such term.
When we were young, we were taught to fear the things that could harm us. Children’s stories were often set around monsters in the night, alien attacks, and sea creatures. Our parents and teachers taught us strangers were to be feared to ensure we were not kidnapped or harmed. Our nation’s leaders spoke of international enemies, I grew up in the Cold War when our leader’s told us our enemies were hell-bent on destroying our nation, and so we feared them too. Nationalists around the world are identifying people to fear, fear the Blacks, the Jews, fear Muslims, Mexicans, South Americans, and anyone that is not White. Our understanding and the context of the word fear created feelings triggered by the perception of danger, real or imagined (Mayo Clinic). Psychology Today reports that ‘fear is a vital response to physical and emotional danger, it has strong roots in human evolution. If people didn’t feel fear, they couldn’t protect themselves from legitimate threats.’ In an article entitled, Very Well Mind, fear is identified as a primal human emotion, that has physiological and emotional responses. So, as a child, I connotated fear with something unpleasant and unwelcome, causing emotional pain, something to run from, not to.
The word ’fear’ can be a misleading word. I know that this word created a sense of discomfort for me. I recall thinking why should I be afraid of a loving God? It did not make sense. Our God is a good, a loving and protective God. We can call upon in good times and bad. He calms us in times of trepidation. He is our Father. As I grew older and matured as a Christian, and studied biblical dictionaries and read commentaries, I discovered that the word was not misleading but was a contextual term. It’s definition differed depending upon whether we seek clarity through the worlds dictionaries or biblical dictionaries.
I, like many of you, attended Sunday School, and when the teachers’ shared, we should fear the Lord, I misunderstood and took the word to mean the type of fear we learned about every day, worldly fear which equated to danger. As children would say, scary fear. I’ve since learned that worldly fear was designed to separate us from God. How can we love a God that we were told to fear and mistrust? The truth is, we were born into a spiritual war. Our parents thought that by warning us and intensifying our fear, they were keeping us safe as we grew up in a world of uncertainty. Satan created this dynamic to separate us from God. I fell prey on many levels early in life not seeing God as a loving Father and disavowing Him because He was intent upon destroying us (as seen in the Old Testament stories), and then as a parent failing to teach my children the distinction between worldly fear and Godly fear.
Now that we know what worldly fear means, let’s look at Godly fear. The fear of the Lord is defined as respect, awe, and submission. Godly fear becomes reverential in nature. I believe that this type of fear does not live in our consciousness until we receive Christ as our Lord and Savior. It is not until we break through the veil that separates the natural world from the spiritual world that we can understand the word, fear, has two meanings. Our awareness manifests when we become a member of God’s family and begin to realize the magnitude of His being. As we become aware, our hearts and soul begin to reap wisdom. Wisdom is the foundational base on which we build our relationship with the Lord. There is one caveat, if you do not accept Christ as your Lord and Savior, then there is no salvation, no relationship, and hence worldly fear will cause you to remain afraid of the Lord. You will see him as a tyrant who, as in the Old Testament, smites those who disobey Him. I believe Solomon wrote in Proverbs, 4:7 NKJV,
Gill (BibleHub.com) explains ‘getting wisdom’ as gaining a greater degree of knowledge of Christ.
Eugene H. Merrill (BibleStudyTools.com) explained it like this: Fear of God also lies at the heart of successful living in the world. Wisdom literature makes it clear that the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, a fear equated with the “knowledge of the Holy One” ( Prov 9: 10; 1: 7; Psalm 111:10 ). To fear God is to know him and to know him is to fear him. Such healthy fear enables one to praise God ( Psalm 22: 23; Rev 14:7 ); to enjoy benefits and blessings at his hand ( Psalm 34:9 ; Psalms 103:11 Psalms 103:13 Psalms 103:17 ); to rest in peace and security ( Psalm 112:7-8 ); and to experience length of days ( Prov 10:27 ; 19:23 ). But fear of God also produces fear of wrath and judgment in those who do not know him or who refuse to serve him. There are, thus, two sides of the fear of the Lord — that which produces awe, reverence, and obedience, and that which causes one to cower in dread and terror in anticipation of his displeasure.
As adults, it is our responsibility to teach those around us the context of words as defined in Biblical dictionaries. Imagine how different your life may have been had you been told the difference between the two languages, and how to establish your life on the foundational base of wisdom. This is not to say that we should have regrets, we live and we learn. However, this knowledge should speak to our hearts explaining how we can spread the Good News.
The word ’fear’ Can be a misleading word. I know that this word created a sense of discomfort for me. I recall thinking why should I be afraid of a loving God? It did not make sense. The following romped through my head: our God is a good God, a loving God. We can call upon in good times and bad. He calms us in times of trepidation. He is our Father. As I grew older and matured as a Christian, studied biblical dictionaries and read commentaries, I discovered that the word was not misleading but was a contextual term. Its definition differed depending upon whether we seek clarity through the worlds dictionaries or biblical dictionaries.
Biblical dictionaries define fear as respect, awe and submission. Fear precedes our awareness of the magnitude of His being. And, once aware, it brings reverence, knowledge, and wisdom.
Wisdom is the foundational base on which we build our relationship with the Lord.
Images – Google Images
The term Fear is ContextualizedReferences – Biblehub.com; Biblestudytools.com; Vine’s Expository Dictionary
We were called before the universe was spoken into being. We were created by God and called to be His people. Our calling is a Holy Calling.
~ Lisa Blair
“who had saved us and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and grace which was given to us in Christ Jesus before time began,” II Timothy 1:9 NKJV
That is right, we have been called with a Holy calling, one that was made before the beginning of time. God envisioned this world and all in it before He created time before He created the universe. As children, many of us wrote stories about cosmos and its inhabitants, envisioning them to manifest our reality. We were enthralled by our own imaginations, but think, God created all that exists from His thoughts and being God, brought it in into being. Every minute detail manifested to become atoms, that became trees, land, water, nature, us. And, in doing so, He called us, giving us life and a desire to know Him better through His grace. To redeem us from the sin that destroyed Eden and His relationship with Adam and Eve who sinned against Him and stripped us, leaving us in a state of sin. We were called through His purpose to share that God sent His Son, Christ Jesus to save us from our sin nature and spread the Good News of our salvation. It is His gift of grace, not of our own doing.
GOD’S GIFT OF GRACE THROUGH THE DEATH OF HIS SON, CHRIST JESUS
“The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want.” Psalms 23:1 NKJV
God has blessed me with long life. I’m 67 today and counting. There is no better life in that I have a wonderful husband, three healthy sons, their spouses and significant others, and two Granddaughters. Working out at the gym right now, took a break to share, ‘our God is a good God’. Praise the Lord, I am grateful.
“You shall walk in all the way which the LORD your God has commanded you, that you may live and that it may be well with you, and that you may prolong your days in the land which you will possess.
I know we all walk down the path into our destiny, the life God designed for us. We are not perfect but under construction; and for those of us with children have made mistakes while maturing as Christians. I’ve learned not to underestimate or doubt God’s purpose and GPS corrections. He welcomes all who seek Him. He is a God second chances and more. He knows our hearts.
Our children also walk with Him, make detours, but return to Him in due season.
6 Train up a child in the way he should go, [a]And when he is old he will not depart from it. Proverbs 22:6 NKJV
Continue in the Lord, He is with you and covers you, and your children as they grow into adulthood and old age.
You never know who is standing next to you or on a street corner holding a sign with a bartering opportunity. If the Lord urges you to help, don’t hesitate, you may be in the presence of an Angel. This story is from rpcgablog.wordpress.com, Yehweh Nissi site. It is worth reblogging. It will move your spirit.
I sat, with two friends, in the picture window of a quaint restaurant just off the corner of the town-square.. The food and the company were both especially good that day.
As we talked, my attention was drawn outside, across the street. There, walking into town, was a man who appeared to be carrying all his worldly goods on his back. He was carrying, a well-worn sign that read, ‘I will work for food.’ My heart sank.
I brought him to the attention of my friends and noticed that others around us had stopped eating to focus on him.. Heads moved in a mixture of sadness and disbelief.
We continued with our meal, but his image lingered in my mind. We finished our meal and went our separate ways.. I had errands to do and quickly set out to accomplish them. I glanced toward the town square, looking somewhat halfheartedly…
For many years I felt the Lord was a punishing God. Words such as sorrow suggested that we were a hurt people. The truth is we are a hurt people, we are a sinful people who must come to a place where our sins are no longer acceptable as our guiding truth. Satan uses sin to capture and control us, to lead us to a hellish death. When we become remorseful and recognize the sorrow we have weighed down upon ourselves, and the God who loves and protects us, we enter into a state of Godly sorrow.
Godly Sorrow is only Mentioned Once in the Bible
Godly sorrow is only mentioned once in the Bible, in 2 Corinthians 7:10-11. Paul uses this term to explain to the Corinthians that they once lived a sinful life that would lead to worldly death, hell, upon departing this earth but had successfully turned away in earnestness to overcome their sin and repent.
Godly Sorrow is an Acute Sense of Sadness
Godly sorrow is an acute sense of sadness we experience when we sin. We feel sadness because we know we have committed sins. We know we have saddened the Lord, just as the Corinthians knew after Paul taught them that God is the Way and the Light. Palm chastised the Corinthians for their dissentions against the church. He intended to cause them to think and having accomplished this task caused them to repent. Paul knew they were remorseful and regretful for their actions of falling back into disbelief, but he also knew that neither would lead to salvation without true repentance and restitution. Godly sorrow brings repentance that leads to salvation.
Godly Sorrow is a Kind of Wretchedness
“Godly sorrow is a kind of wretchedness that can bring the repentant sinner to tears of grief. Godly sorrow results from a heartfelt conviction that we have offended God by our sin.” Our spirit grieves, and when Godly sorrow has its way, we resolve to stop repeating the sins, turn away from our carnal nature and pick up the cross and do good. We cleanse ourselves through prayer.
Results of Godly Sorrow
Doing good, is the result of Godly sorrow. It is through Godly sorrow that we can release the guilt and shame for our sin nature and actions, and repent asking for forgiveness and vowing to never return to them. Repentance is not an emotion, it is our decision to change. We have to make the decision to turn around and change our lives to truly repent. We repent and believe through faith. Faith comes after repenting and surrendering our life to the Lord. It is through God’s grace that we are forgiven and given new life to move forward. It is through God’s grace that we receive salvation.
God Sorrow, Repentance, and Salvation are Ours
Not all of 1 Corinthians 7 is intended for us. Some of it is intended for the Corinthians. However, repentance and salvation are for everyone who calls out to God to save them from their sins and believes that Christ died on the cross and rose from the dead to join God in heaven. God restored the discipline of the church of Corinth and sin, and He restores us. We sin through our (own) actions and complicitous approval of those sinning in our scope of influence. The church was complicit by not addressing incestuous behavior. We are complicit when we do not speak out against sin and do not address the offender.
Sorrow Cannot Merely Be Guilt through Discovery
“We must be very careful that our sorrow for sin is not merely sorrow that has been found out, but sorrow which, seeing the evil of the sinful thing is determined never to do it again and has dedicated the rest of its life to atone, by God’s grace, for what was done.” (Barclay)
Godly Sorrow, Apology and the Holy Spirit, Intercession on Our Behalf
When we pray, the Holy Spirit intercedes and helps us apologize to God and repent. This is accomplished through confessing our sins, not by denying them or defending them because neither is true confession.
Godly Sorrow is the Lining of Our Repentance
While Godly sorrow is only mentioned once in scripture, it is the lining of our repentance. Repentance separates godly sorrow from worldly sorrow. Godly sorrow produces true repentance. Worldly sorrow is not really sorrow, it is the only resentment that has been found out (William Barclay). If we do not feel Godly sorrow for our sinful actions, we are not able to truly repent and turn away from them with God’s help. Without godly sorrow, we would repeat the offense, given a chance to do it again. Godly sorrow not only hates the act, but it also hates the nature of the act itself. Without godly sorrow, we are bound by our sin nature and remain in the camp of the evil one.
God Separates Us From Our Sin Through Our Decision to Change
Like the Church at Corinth, we are growing (maturing) when we repent and turn away from sin. God can separate us from our sins and place them as far away as the east is from the west, but He is only able to do so when we are cleansed and convicted to the point of wholehearted confession and repentance. It is through God’s grace that we are saved.
Images – YouVersion/Bible.com; Google Images-Knowing Jesus.com
References – What is Godly sorrow? Gotquestions.org; Studylight.org: 2 Corinthians 7:10-11, Commentaries – Charles Barclay, Albert Barnes, Coffman, John Gill; Nelson’s Quick Reference by Warren Wiersbe; Vine’s Complete Expository Dictionary by W.E. Vine; KJV Word Study; Youtube:2Corinthians_BrettVarner; 2 Corinthians_JasonJack
Praise the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits — who forgives all our sins and heals all our diseases… (Psalm 103:2-3)
Our God is an awesome God. He not only defines and defeats sin; he delivers us from the consequences of sin by forgiving our sins and purifying us. True healing means more than just curing a sick body — and we praise God for the times he has done that in our lives. No, true healing means to forgive and deliver us from what breaks our spirits and makes our souls and bodies unhealthy. Only God offers this “benefit” as part of his retirement package!
My Prayer…How can I sufficiently praise you, Abba Father, for your mercy and grace that has forgiven, pardoned, and cleansed me of my sin. Help me never to forget the joy of being forgiven and included in your family…
I am a Christian, a retired teacher, a mother and a grandmother. I love to read and I love the Lord Jesus Christ! Unless otherwise specified ,all visual illustrations are from the YOU VERSION APP of the Bible.