Taken from Sermon titled: Jesus on Fear | Matthew 6.25-34
Fear is a nasty thing. Fear doesn’t lead us to God; it leads us away from Him and others. Fear does not build trust in God, it creates doubt. Fear does not generate intimacy with God, it fosters mistrust. Ultimately, fear leads us to sin. Fear destroys relationships because fear makes unfaithful and unloving. All of our faith, all of our love, all of our time, all of our money, all of our energy is given to that savior NOT named Jesus. Fear takes us inward until all we think about is ourselves, robbing us of joy, and our family (or friends) of us.
- Fear of the future enslaves us to self-preoccupation
- Fear of failure enslaves us to self-reliance
- Fear of unhappiness enslaves us to self-indulgence
- Fear of disapproval enslaves us to self-promotion
- Fear of rejection by men enslaves us to self-consciousness
- Fear of rejection by God enslaves us to self-righteousness
- Fear of suffering/death enslaves us to self-preservation
Fear enslaves us to self. Driven by a commitment to self, we will do everything we can to avoid punishment (also known as pain). We do not need to live free from total fear as much as it needs to be redirected. We suffer from misplaced fear. In other words, we fear the wrong people, things, or circumstances. The gospel is the only thing that truly frees us to live a life where we are fearlessly loved, and empowered to fearlessly live.
1John 4.15-18 15 Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God. 16 So we have come to know and to believe the love that God has for us. God is love, and whoever abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him. 17 By this is love perfected with us, so that we may have confidence for the day of judgment, because as he is so also are we in this world. 18 There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear. For fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not been perfected in love.
Part 2 tomorrow…”What it means to live a fearless (resurrected) life”.