I’m posting my sermon notes, for those who don’t want to scroll down and go to the sermon.net link. I pray they bless and challenge you.
9 – 1 – 01 was a day of fear for many! Planes crashing into the World Trade Center towers, then into the Pentagon. When would it end? We feared for the lives of those trapped in the wreckage, especially when the towers collapsed. It was a very great fear — a terrible fear.
But there is a wonderful fear. That seems contrary, but I believe the Lord will help me to explain it.
Isaiah speaks of the coming Messiah, Jesus Christ:
Isaiah 11:2 The Spirit of the LORD will rest on Him,
The spirit of wisdom and understanding,
The spirit of counsel and strength,
The spirit of knowledge and the fear of the LORD.
Isaiah 11:3 And He will delight in the fear of the LORD,
Isaiah 33:6 . . . and the fear of the LORD is His treasure.
The Hebrew word for fear is yirah (3374), to revere, be awestruck, to be afraid of. (NOTE: If you are a believer, there is no fear of condemnation to hell unless you keep sinning, but we should tremble at His word, per Isaiah 66:5, revering and honoring it.)
Delight means the fear of the Lord was a fragrant aroma to Jesus, pleasing, like incense. He breathed it in, and it was delightful. This is how it is for all believers — we have this fear, and it is sweet and wonderful to us. Here’s what the Bible promises for those who fear the Lord:
Psalm 19:9 The fear of the LORD is clean (pure, cleansing), enduring forever;
Psalm 111:10 The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom; a good understanding have all those who do His commandments;
Proverbs 1:7 The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge [root is yada (3045), intimate knowledge, marital relationship];
Proverbs 8:13 “The fear of the LORD is to hate evil; pride and arrogance and the evil way and the perverted mouth . . .
Proverbs 10:27 The fear of the LORD prolongs life,
Proverbs 14:26 In the fear of the LORD there is strong confidence, and his children will have refuge.
Proverbs 14:27 The fear of the LORD is a fountain of life, that one may avoid the snares of death.
Proverbs 16:6 And by the fear of the LORD one keeps away from evil.
Proverbs 19:23 The fear of the LORD leads to life, so that one may sleep satisfied, untouched by evil.
Proverbs 22:4 The reward of humility and the fear of the LORD are riches, honor and life.
This fear of the Lord, then, is indeed wonderful!
DESCRIPTION OF THOSE WITH NO FEAR OF GOD
Psalms 36:1 Transgression (rebellion) speaks to the ungodly within his heart; There is no fear of God before his eyes.
From the Expositors Bible Commentary: “(Man’s) entire being is adversely affected by sin. His whole nature is permeated with it. Human relations also suffer, because society can be no better than those who constitute it. Some of the obvious effects? Conflict and bloodshed . . .
Paul describes those who do not fear God (both Jews and non-Jews):
Romans 3:15 “THEIR FEET ARE SWIFT TO SHED BLOOD,
Romans 3:16 “DESTRUCTION AND MISERY ARE IN THEIR PATHS,
Romans 3:17 AND THE PATH OF PEACE THEY HAVE NOT KNOWN.”
Romans 3:18 “THERE IS NO FEAR OF GOD BEFORE THEIR EYES.”
Doesn’t this describe the terrorists who flew those planes into the towers and the Pentagon?
Why did 9 -1 – 1 happen? The terrorists had no fear of God. They feared Allah, but Allah was the creation of Mohammed, many years after Christ. Allah is a false god, a counterfeit. Did the church have an answer for those who flocked to her, looking for answers and comfort? Here’s why that DIDN’T happen, in many churches.
THE CHURCH MUST FEAR THE LORD IN ORDER TO HEAR THE LORD — IF SHE DOES NOT FEAR HIM, SHE WILL HAVE NO ANSWER IN THE DARK HOUR, just like many churches on 9 – 1 – 01!Many in today’s church think the Word of God was written by men, is a book of suggestions, is myth and legend, that it’s OK with God if we sin a little or a lot. Google “The Jesus Seminar” . . . there is no fear of God there!
But listen to the description of the early church, after they were filled with the Holy Spirit:
Acts 9:31 So the church throughout all Judea and Galilee and Samaria enjoyed peace, being built up; and going on in the fear of the Lord and in the comfort of the Holy Spirit, it continued to increase.
Do you see that the fear of the Lord was wonderful to them? They benefited from all that Solomon described in the Proverbs I read to you. But for those who are disobedient, there is no benefit, for they do not fear the Lord. The Corinthian church was an example of the disobedient. Here’s what the Apostle Paul wrote to them:
2Corinthians 5:11 Therefore, knowing the fear of the Lord, we persuade men, but we are made manifest to God; and I hope that we are made manifest also in your consciences.
And in 2 Corinthians 5:20, Paul exhorts them, “Be reconciled to God!” This was a sinning church, disobeying God. Their disobedience was proof that they did not fear the Lord.
So what shall we do? Let this word judge us. Do we fear the Lord? Do we believe God is who He says He is? If we do, we will fear Him — revere Him, respect Him, be awestruck, and it will be a delight and a treasure to us.
Peter didn’t waste much time in his first letter to the church. After praising the Lord for what He had done in the hearts of those to whom the letter was addressed, Peter exhorted them (and us) to be holy. In 1 Peter 1:17, he wrote, “If you address as Father the one who impartially judges according to each one’s work, conduct yourselves in fear during the time of your stay on earth.”
Conduct yourselves in the fear of the Lord! If you are a believer, you cannot help but see the fear of God as something WONDERFUL and a DELIGHT!
NOTE: All Scripture from NAS Bible.