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'Christ in You...'

    by Dale Krebbs

Your Journey Out Of Fear
Date Posted: August 29, 2021

Someone once said to me that fear should never be part of a Christian life. The word "should" was not emphasized. But it should have been. Everyone fears something, sometimes, in some ways.

There is an abandonment of fear, usually temporarily, when there is bravery. Many a soldier has abandoned fear temporarily and performed amazing feats, and without consideration for self. Fear is pushed back long enough by willingness to sacrifice. This feat is described as a form of love for a fellow soldier, a comrade drawn close via danger and the possible need for each other. But this is not the love of God. It is a "love" born out of mutual need and affection.
This "love" that lasts long enough to abandon fear temporarily, is not the love that John describes here:
"There is no fear in love, but perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears punishment has not been perfected in love." - 1 John 4:18 (NET)

This kind of fear can motivate one into a legalistic form of obedience. This obedience is not love. It is fear. Love - the love of God - drives out fear, and into the same obedience as fear, but without fear. Love produces an obedience which does not involve fear as a mot ovation. Liberalism is the abandonment of both fear and love. No fear and no love, becomes almost complete spiritual bankruptcy.

Under the Old Covenant, fear was an integral component of life. There were many rules, laws, and various requirements in order to be fully obedient to God. The Old Covenant often spoke of fear in a positive vein. Fearing to disobey was rewarded with the result of obedience - blessings, protection from enemies, and many other benefits. Fear of God was often cast in the same theme with love for God, and love for fellow Israelites. There were very strong penalties for not fearing enough (loving)God enough to obey. This system worked up to a point. And God intended it work - up to a point. The point was that humans did not possess the internal qualities to always obey. God makes this clear when He says:

"For if that first covenant had been without defect, there would have been no room for another one or an attempt to institute another one. However, He finds fault with them [showing its inadequacy] when He says, Behold, the days will come, says the Lord, when I will make and ratify a new covenant or agreement with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah." - Hebrews 8:7-8 (AMP)

The most perfect and righteous Law ever given to mankind simply could not be kept without violating it. The covenant based on fear did not and could not produce righteousness, and avoid the resulting "fear of punishment", which it imposed.

It was then time for the next step in God's Plan to redeem mankind. He had proven through centuries of working with Israel that obedience to law could not be sustained without fear. And more important, the obedience which it temporarily produced not only could not be sustained, but it did not change those attempting to obey. It was all part of the journey out of fear to the freedom from fear produced by love - the love of God. However, for love to produce the type of obedience which did not produce fear takes time. It also takes an internal strength and power that does not reside in the natural human being.

The love of God in Jesus Christ is the only quality that can produce obedience without the fear of failure, which in turn produces a defiled conscience and fear.

Therefore, the escape from this thing called fear is a process. A lifetime journey. As long as we are human, there will be some fear in our lives. Until our escape from fear is accomplished, there will be consciousness of sins which cause a kind of fear, even though we know we are forgiven if we are repentant. Sometimes, even the sins of the past - long ago put as far as the East is from the West - is used by Satan to provoke the old fear of the consequences of our sin, as he attempts to defile our conscience again. But God's purpose in Christ is to finally deliver us from ALL fear, all dread, all anticipation of punishment.

We can take comfort in the experience of Jesus Himself, for He too expressed His anxiousness for the cross to be finished. Perhaps He did not fear as the average human fears, but He certainly looked forward to being released from the anxiety and stress of what He knew must come:

"I have come to bring fire on the earth – and how I wish it were already kindled! I have a baptism to undergo, and how distressed I am until it is finished!" - Luke 12:49-50 (NET)

He must have feared the cross. He was fully human, as well as fully God. Eventually, His anxiety, fear, or whatever we as human wish to label it, was conquered by Love. His fear was cast out of Him. Perfect Love conquered. He was made perfect again as God. Now, having conquered all as human and as God, He became the Son of God, a God-Man. The only way for us to finish our journey out of fear is to keep growing in that same Love.

Take comfort today, as the love of God continues more and more to cast out the fear and subconscious dread of punishment. Fear was put in you originally to provoke you to turn from sin. Now that the love of God dwells in you, He will eventually remove that which will no longer be useful, and for your benefit. Continue your journey. Soon there will be no more fear of failure, death, or the judgment when you stand before Christ. With Christ's love in you, you will escape the bondage of fear forever. You have nothing to fear!

"Moreover [let us also be full of joy now!] let us exult and triumph in our troubles and rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that pressure and affliction and hardship produce patient and unswerving endurance. And endurance (fortitude) develops maturity of character (approved faith and ]tried integrity). And character [of this sort] produces [the habit of] joyful and confident hope of eternal salvation. Such hope never disappoints or deludes or shames us, for God's love has been poured out in our hearts through the Holy Spirit Who has been given to us." - Romans 5:3-5 (AMP)

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Biography Information:
Dale Krebbs served as an Elder, preaching, counseling, and conducting Bible studies for over 25 years in Texas, California, and Arizona. He is now retired, lives in Arizona, and continues the study and research of Gods Word.
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