King Solomon shares the following wisdom in Proverbs 19:21-23. “Many are the plans in the mind of a man, but it is the purpose of the LORD that will stand. 22) What is desired in a man is steadfast love, and a poor man is better than a liar. 23) The fear of the LORD leads to life, and whoever has it rests satisfied; he will not be visited by harm.” Proverbs 29:25 states, “The fear of man lays a snare, but whoever trusts in the LORD is safe.”
In the 2020 election, people fear that the country will be destroyed if either presidential candidate is elected. DO NOT BE AFRAID! Fear is a bondage that will cause physiological stress on your body, which will make you sick. LOOK UP and find peace and rest in God’s ability to fulfill his purpose for you and our country. The fear of God is to reverence and trust Him, that His purpose and judgment will prevail in our country, no matter who is president.
If you fear or show reverence to the Lord, you will be free to not fear the future because no harm will visit you. We may have troubles, but that will not harm us, but help us grow in our faith in God’s provision and protection. If you don’t fear God but instead fear for the future of our country, then you will NOT rest satisfied, and your fear will invite the devil to harm you. See my post called “How the Devil Causes Trouble”
I wrote in my post called “Are you a sheep or a goat?” that love is the defining term of a true Christian, who loves those who do not believe as they believe. In verse 22, King Solomon tells us that steadfast love and truth are to be desired in your life, so seek to love and speak the truth to everyone you meet. Another action of a true Christian is to fear God. People who fear and trust God will be content with whatever happens in this election because their eyes are on God not the concerning circumstances.
In my last post, I explained that you can lose your heavenly inheritance by having idols in your life, even unseen idols. In this post, I will reveal how you can make activities and people into idols when you do not fear or trust God. Idols are often called vanities, or vain things. Jonah 2:8 states, “Those who pay regard to vain idols forsake their hope of steadfast love (of God).” Idols are lying vanities, as opposed to the living and true God because they are imaginary and are powerless to help you. So, putting your confidence in idols is vain.
Idolatry of Activities
You can identify unseen idols by evaluating where you spend excessive time and effort; even ministry can be an idol, or gardening, or blogging. Ouch, I stepped on my own toes. I can give specifics, but we are each tempted in different ways to serve unseen idols of activities. So, ask God to show you what controls your life? Remember, an idol is anything that draws you away from your love and devotion to God and people. Idols could be your work, hobbies, sports, TV, movies, books, social media, video games, pets, alcohol, drugs, food, etc. How do you spend your time and energy that then keeps you from spending time with God? Raising children doesn’t count because that is a God-given purpose. Even if you’re busy caring for your children and home, you can fill your home and car with praise music or scripture reading while performing your tasks.
Idolatry of People
How do people become unseen idols? A celebrity becomes an idol when you get your identity and a sense of belonging from them. Our loved ones become idols for the same reasons, plus, you expect them to love and accept you unconditionally. Yes, you want people to love and accept you, but they cannot meet your expectations because they cannot love you the way you want. Only God can meet your need for love, acceptance, identity, and belonging; all other sources are idols in your life. Why do you idolize people? To hopefully get something from them.
People are foolish to make idols of the presidential candidates. They worship their candidate and think their candidate will make their lives better. People, especially politicians, make the worst idols because they will let you down and will not meet your expectations most of the time. Plus, people make the worst idols because they are sinners.
People also make idols of pastors and other spiritual leaders. You know those who have made the pastor or spiritual leader an idol when they leave the church when the spiritual leader leaves or fails to give them what they are looking for. They had no interest in loving God and loving people.
God’s purposes for you and this country will prevail. We can trust God to always love us and provide the things we need. Trusting the government is foolish. So to, people and activities will let you down eventually because they cannot meet your expectations. Fear God and worship Him only, love others, and be truthful and you will be satisfied, and no harm will come near you. Above all, do not fear the future, only fear God as the judge of the world.
Grace and peace to you,
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Pt. 2: Why You Can and Cannot Trust God?
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4 thoughts on “Fear God, Not People”
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Well said, Joyce. As a former pastor’s wife (my husband is retired now), I took special interest in what you had to say about people who make idols of their pastors. This becomes apparent when they leave the church because the pastor leaves or he’s failed to give them what they are looking for. “They had no interest in loving God and loving people,” you conclude. I never thought of those situations in that light! As opportunity presents itself, I’ll be sharing that with other pastors and their wives, to add your wise perspective on a potentially hurtful circumstance.
Thank you. You are right, when people leave a church it causes pain in the body of Christ because we are members of one another according to Romans 12. My conclusion is only my observation and opinion that may not be the truth in every situation. Many members left my last church because they did not agree with the new mission and direction the pastor was taking the church. The pastor was very hurt and took it personally. We need to give grace as Jesus has given us grace. The church also needs to forgive as Jesus has forgiven us. People are complicated, as you very well know.
God will always fulfill His purpose – so true! Amen!