Typically when people are afraid of something, it breeds inactivity. Not certain what to do, they end up doing nothing at all.
The Bible speaks quite a bit about fear – more than 700 times to be exact. 2 Timothy 1:7 says,
“For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.” (NKJV)
If God has not given us a spirit of fear, then why are so many people who follow him are gripped by fear?
I believe fear is one of his enemy’s primary tools used against believers to create doubt and faithlessness. Even Jesus said in Matthew 10:28,
“And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. But rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” (NKJV)
Fear can cause us to miss out on being a part of God’s great plans. We see this best in the story of Gideon. Gideon was afraid from the first moment God called him to save the people of Israel by defeating the Midianites. Gideon continually tested God, and in turn, God continually confronted Gideon’s fear by showing His power.
In Judges 7, as Gideon is preparing to battle the Midianites, God makes it clear He wants the Israelites to credit Him for the victory. So, God decides to wean Gideon’s army. The first cut? Any man who is afraid (Judges 7:3). With that, 22,000 men packed their bags and went home out of fear.
Leaving Gideon 10,000 soldiers, God says it must be smaller. God gave Gideon another criterion that left him with only 300 men.
Sometimes God asks you to do things that are not practical or pragmatic.
In Gideon’s case, 300 men faithfully followed God’s instructions, which included no weapons but rather going into battle with only a trumpet and pitchers. Because of their faithfulness to do as God said, they won and defeated the Midianites. On the other hand, 22,000 men went home and later discovered they missed out on one of the greatest miraculous military battles in history. All because they ran from destiny and ran toward fear.
We all have fear. The enemy wants to paralyze us with it, but God wants us to walk by faith and instill courage in us to follow Him. The Bible says in Hebrews 11:6,
“But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.” (NKJV)
Today, God calls you to walk by faith, not by fear. Of course, you will face seasons of fear, but in those times you must pray for God to give you the courage to stand strong and stand in what He has told you.
Never doubt in the light what God has told you in the dark. The battle is not yours anyway; it is God’s.
Copyright © 2018 Jay Lowder. Used with permission.