A Choice of Fears
Scripture Reading: Matthew 10:21-31
Key Verse: Matthew 10:28
”Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather, be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell.”
The discussion of fear is an interesting one within the ranks of God’s church. One extreme side of this discussion says that fear has no place in the salvation process. “You can’t scare people into heaven,” they teach. The other extreme would be those who dangle people over the fires of hell in nearly every conversation about salvation.
In our scripture for today, Jesus seems to teach a “middle ground.” He tells us that we would be foolish to fear men who can only kill the body but have no fear of the One who can destroy body and soul in hell. Here Jesus defends the fact that there are situations when we should fear God. If we become “men pleasers” to the point of ignoring God’s commands and concerns, we are acting foolishly.
In Matthew 10:26 and Matthew 10:31 Jesus says, “Do not be afraid of them (people).”
Jesus is encouraging His disciples that, when living among them, they need not fear those who might do them harm. Our Father knows us intimately: the hairs on our head are numbered. Our Father takes note of every sparrow that dies. How much more is our worth to our heavenly Father?
Is it a hard choice not to fear people, those who might do us harm? It seems so, but there are no hard choices once we get focused and stay centered in our walk with God. Choose God’s way and live in peace.
Father, help me to choose faith in you rather than the appeasement of men. Grant me courage amid my temptation to fear. In Jesus’ Name, amen.