THE TEETH OF THE DRAGON
The Problem of Feelings and Fear
Feelings vs. Rationality
"We walk by faith, not by sight" (2 Cor.5:7, AV)
"Blessed are those who have not seen and yet believe" (John 20:29, RSV)
"Did I not tell you that if you would believe you would see the glory of God?"
(John 11:40, RSV)
I wonder if you are one of those intuitive persons who has "feelings" about things? I wonder if you have ever sat and listened to someone talking about some religious principle and had the "feeling" that it was true or false? Whether we like it or not, our feelings play an enormous rôle in the judgments we make about people, theology, and even things. Even the most rational, logical and intellectual scientist will admit, if honest, that he is steered by feelings in his judgments to some extent.
In the sphere of religion feelings play an enormously powerful rôle. We are occasionally shocked to see what people will do in the name of religion when their passions totally smother every vestige of common sense and rationality. Equally, we may be surprised to see how emotionally cold certain religious people can be, people who act and react without a trace of feeling.
Perhaps those of you who are already believers will remember a time when you wrestled with your feelings, and perhaps still do, when it comes to your Christian faith. I know many people who feel frustrated because their coming to faith in Christ involved few or no feelings at all. They suppose that any conversion process must be charged with feelings or it is no conversion at all. And because they have not had singularly outstanding feelings they come to doubt their belief. "Was I really converted?" they ask themselves. "Am I in fact a believer?" or "Have I actually received the Ruach haQodesh (Holy Spirit)?" There are many churches that teach that a person is not born again unless they have a burning in the bosom, or a sudden outburst of emotion, perhaps even accompanied by speaking in some strange tongue. So what is the answer to these questions?
No Feelings in the Bible
To begin with, let me point out something that I think will surprise most of you. Did you know that the word "feeling" does not appear in the Bible once? No, brethren and sisters, not once. At least, not as an independent quantity. What we in twentieth century Europe call "feeling" is called in the Scripture SEEING. There is no distinction between mind and heart, thoughts and feelings. Indeed, there is no word for "mind" in the Bible either. The seat of thought and feelings is described as the HEART. You think with your heart and you...well, not feel, because the word "feel" doesn't exist in Hebrew or New Testament Greek..you think and you SEE with your heart.
If you will take this single linguistic key a whole new spiritual world will open up to you. You see, the Scriptures tell us repeatedly that salvation comes not from seeing but from believing. Or to rephrase it, salvation comes not from feeling but from having FAITH. Faith, according to the Scriptures, is quite simply to believe what Yahweh says. If you do not believe and want to see, you will not see. If you do not believe and want to feel, you will not feel. If you do not believe and want to understand, you will not understand.
Believing is Seeing
To see the glory of Yahweh you must simply believe. At the dedication of the first Jerusalem Temple, Solomon offered a tremendous prayer of faith, and as a result fire came down from heaven and consumed the burnt offering prepared by the priests. So great was the glory of God's presence that they could not enter the Temple at all (2 Chr.6:12-7:2).
King David, who was a man of tremendous faith, declared: "I believe that I shall see the goodness of Elohim (God) in the land of the living! Wait for Yahweh; be strong, and let your heart take courage; yea, wait for Yahweh!" (Ps.27:23-24, RSV). Isaiah said: "If you will not believe, surely you shall not be established" (Isa.7:9b, RSV).
You will recall an incident when Peter believed Yah'shua (Jesus) and started walking on the water towards the Master. Once his faith deserted him he was swamped by feelings. The Scripture reads: "But when he saw the wind, he was afraid, and beginning to sink he cried out, "Master, save me!" Yah'shua (Jesus) immediately reached out His hand and caught him, saying to him, "O man of little faith, why did you doubt?" (Matt.14:28-31, RSV). Feelings interfered with his emunah (faith).
Yet Peter was a man of great emunah (faith). Recall this incident when he said: "Master, we toiled all night and took nothing. BUT AT YOUR WORD I WILL LET DOWN THE NETS." And when they had done this, they enclosed a great shoal of fish" (Luke 5:5-6, RSV). Just the Word of the Master was enough for Peter -- that's all. He believed. And he obtained the blessings of his emunah (faith).
Faith Before Feelings
If you are one of those persons who is looking for feelings, and feel sorry because you cannot find them, then I tell you that you never will find them. But if you are not seeking for feelings, but for true emunah (faith), then I promise you will receive them in abundance. Yah'shua (Jesus) said: "Whosoever would save his life shall lose it, and whosoever shall lose his life for My sake shall find it" (John 12:25, AV). It is only AFTER FAITH IN THE WORD has been given without expecting or forcing, that true, holy and pure feelings come through the Ruach haQodesh (Holy Spirit). And these are not contrived feelings or sentimental feelings, but they are the feelings of divinity itself. Paul asked this: "Did you receive the Ruach (Spirit) by works of the law, or by hearing with emunah (faith)?" (Gal.3:2, RSV). The Ruach (Spirit) comes by emunah (faith), not by feelings. Do not confuse the two, as so many millions of believers do. Feelings and the Ruach haQodesh (Holy Spirit) are not necessarily the same thing, and feelings were never the door to the Ruach (Spirit). Emunah (faith) is.
Learn to live by emunah (faith). Understand that in order to have an emotionally balanced life in harmony with pure, mental intelligence, you must first and foremost live by EMUNAH (FAITH). Emunah (faith) is not feelings. Emunah (faith) is not intellectual rationalisation. Emunah (faith) is simply accepting what Yahweh says as being true and then acting on it. If when you are praying you feel your lev (heart) is cold -- if your praying feels emotionally dead, don't force your feelings or allow yourself to sink into a depression. No, don't do this at all. Rather, live by emunah (faith). Trust in Yahweh. Let your emunah (faith) look upon the Master as near. Look upon His power and faithfulness; and though your lev (heart) has nothing to bring Him, believe that He will give you everything. You see, feeling always seeks something in itself -- it is selfish. But emunah (faith) keeps itself occupied with what Messiah is.
Speaking of Abraham, Paul said: "No distrust made him waver concerning the promise of Elohim (God), but he grew strong in his emunah (faith) as he gave glory to Elohim (God), fully convinced that Elohim (God) was able to do what He had promised. That is why his emunah (faith) was "reckoned to him as righteousness." But the words, "it was reckoned to him," were written not for his sake alone, but for ours also. It will be reckoned to us who believe in Him that raised from the dead, Yah'shua (Jesus) our Master (Lord), who was put to death for our trespasses and raised for our justification" (Rom.4:20-25, RSV).
Understand that, that Abraham was not made right with Elohim (God) because of his feelings but because of his EMUNAH (FAITH). Feelings are like the tides of the sea -- they come in and they go out. They belong to that species called self. But emunah (faith) -- true emunah (faith) -- is what brings us into right relationship with Yahweh. Do your feelings change? Of course they do. But the question that matters is this: do you still believe? If you do, rejoice, for it is in that emunah (faith) you are made secure in Messiah.
Scriptures and Feelings
I am sure you have read the Scriptures and often had no feelings at all. Infact, you may have felt quite dead inside. If, after reading the Word, you have no feelings, interest, or blessing, read it again but do so with emunah (faith). Only then will the Word begin to work inside you and bring forth spiritual fruit. When you feel no ahavah (love) in your lev (heart), immediately turn your thoughts to the ahavah (love) of Yah'shua (Jesus) and say in emunah (faith): "Master, I know that you still love me." When you have no feelings of gladness, believe in the inexpressible simcha (joy) that there is in Yah'shua (Jesus) for you. Say aloud: "Master, I believe that you feel great simcha (joy) for me!" And why can you believe that? because He says so in the Scriptures. That's all you need.
Emunah (Faith) is blessedness and will give simcha (joy) to those who are not concerned about the self-sufficiency that springs from simcha (joy) but about the glorification of Yahweh that springs from emunah (faith).
Let's think about that for a moment. Paul wrote to the Romans: "May the Elohim (God) of hope fill you with all simcha (joy) and shalom (peace) in having emunah (believing), so that by the power of the Ruach haQodesh (Holy Spirit) you may abound in hope" (Rom.15:13, RSV). And to the Galatians he said: "I have been crucified with Messiah (Christ); it is no longer I who live, but Messiah (Christ) who lives in me; and the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of Elohim (God), who loved me and gave Himself for me" (Gal.2:20, RSV).
The apostle Peter echoes Paul when he says: "Blessed be the Elohim (God) and Father of our Master Yah'shua the Messiah (Lord Jesus Christ)! By His great mercy we have been born anew to a living hope through the resurrection of Yah'shua the Messiah (Jesus Christ) from the dead, and to an inheritance which is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you, who by Elohim's (God's) power are guarded through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. In this you rejoice, though now for a little while you may have to suffer various trials, so that the genuineness of your faith, more precious than gold which though perishable is tested by the fire, may resound to praise and glory and honour at the revelation of Yah'shua the Messiah (Jesus Christ). Without having seen Him you love Him; though you do not now see Him you believe in Him and rejoice with unutterable and exalted simcha (joy). As the outcome of your emunah (faith) you obtain the salvation of your souls" (1 Peter 1:3-9, RSV).
You may be absolutely sure that Yahweh will fulfill His Word: "Blessed are they who have not seen, and yet have believed." "Did I not tell you that you believed, you would see the glory of Elohim (God)?"
Which Life Do You Choose?
Every day you must make a choice -- to choose to live a life of feelings or a life of emunah (faith). Now, don't misunderstand me, I'm not saying you are to be cold and without feeling. By no means. Rather, I am saying that happy is the person who, once and for all, has made a firm choice. Happy is the person who every morning chooses not to seek or listen for feeling but only to walk by emunah (faith) according to the will of Elohim (God).
The person who chooses, by emunah (faith), to occupy himself with Yahweh's Word, with what Yahweh has said and is saying, will surely taste the blessedness of a life centered in Messiah and know inner harmony and shalom peace. His emotions will be pure, strong and stable. His thoughts will be clear, set-apart (holy) and penetrating. He will not be tossed to and fro by every changing thought and feeling. He will be firm as a rock, gentle as water, and as wise as a sage. Since he will not be seeking to fulfil himself, he won't be centered in feelings, because feeling seeks and aims at itself. But emunah (faith) honours not self, but Yahweh and in turn will be honoured by Him. Emunah (faith) has always pleased Yahweh. And it is through that emunah (faith) that the believer will receive a witness through his heart -- through strong, rich, and pure feelings -- that he is acceptable to Yahweh. But first comes the EMUNAH (FAITH) in what Yahweh has already said.
Here is a suggested prayer to help you obtain this true gospel centre:
Feelings and Sign-Seeking
Dear Heavenly Father, there is only one thing that I desire, and one thing that You desire, and that is that I should trust You, and that I should always talk with You in that emunah (faith). Master, let this faith be the one thing in which I seek my happiness -- to honour and please You by an emunah (faith) that firmly holds You, the Invisible, and trust You in all things. In Yah'shua's (Jesus') Name. Amen.
I knew a man who found it hard to believe in Elohim (God). He wanted some manifestation -- a vision, a burning feeling in his bosom, or some other supernatural experience. He sought for these things and never found them. But Yahweh does not work in this fashion. What Yahweh wants is simply your emunah (faith) in the Word that He has spoken in the Scriptures. It is through this simple emunah (faith), which even a child can understand, that your new life in Messiah can take root. You must read the Word and believe in order to be changed inwardly. The understanding -- the sure knowledge of emet (truth) -- comes only as a result of persevering in grace.
Now such an approach to truth is at total variance with the modern world which teaches sceptical enquiry. The modern scientific method, which is valid in its own sphere but not in the religious, says you must set up a hypothesis and then try to prove it right or wrong. But religious emet (truth) cannot be distilled or dissected in the scientist's laboratory in that fashion. It can only be apprehended by emunah (faith). Now this does not mean that a person's emunah (faith) should be utterly blind -- we are not supposed to approach the Master with blank minds and levim (hearts). We are to listen, meditate and contemplate, listen to our feelings, and many other things. The signals will undoubtedly be mixed, one part of you saying "yes" and another saying "no".
Be aware of all these thoughts and feelings, and especially their contradictions. In the process of time you will learn to discern their source. But learn to listen to something higher than "self", something that transcends thought and feeling, namely the Ruach (Spirit). The Scriptures sometimes call it the "still, small voice" -- not the voice of your subconscious which is constantly prattling away (and which many mistake for the voice of the Ruach/Spirit), but the voice which is both supremely strong and sublimely gentle, "like running waters". That inner voice will always confirm what Yahweh has spoken before in the Scriptures. The written and the spoken are His Word.
True Poverty of Spirit
Another key to help you discern the Ruach (Spirit). Yah'shua (Jesus) taught that the kingdom of heaven belongs to those who are poor in spirit. That might at first sound a little strange, for surely the blessedness of the Besorah (Gospel) is richness in the Ruach (Spirit). But that is not what the Saviour means. The spirit He is talking about is the spirit of man. A feeling of deep inner poverty qualifies a person for royal riches. Your feeling of utter weakness qualifies you for kingly might. To know Yahweh -- to obtain His Word inwardly -- you must come to an awareness of your own inner poverty. The person who feels self-sufficient, who thinks he knows everything, is not poor in spirit and cannot enter the kingdom of heaven.
To know Yahweh is to also know how little mankind is compared to Elohim (God). A man who knows everything doesn't need emunah (faith). He can't have it. You can only have emunah (faith) in that which you can't see or feel. Paul said: "Now emunah (faith) is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen" (Heb.11:1, RSV). emunah (faith) is the conviction of things not understood or felt. You know something is true but you don't know why. Your "knowledge" is not intellectual or emotional but transcendental -- it is beyond space and time. Yet as you grow in grace that knowledge will distill in your minds and your feelings also. But it takes time and perseverance.
The secret of true emunah (faith) is to have nothing in itself -- because you have given it up -- and yet it is to have all in Christ -- because He returns it to you many times over. emunah (faith) in Christ is dying to your own way of thinking and feeling and letting Him live in you, so that your thoughts and feelings become transformed. And when they do, you will find you are thinking and feeling in a way that is quite different from that of the natural mind and heart. You will begin to "see" and "understand" quite differently -- so differently, in fact, that none but a true believer will know what you are talking about when you try to express this new life. You will be speaking a different language to unbelievers because you belong to a different spiritual country.
The true secret of emunah (faith) is to know that these things are true. But more than knowing, it is to bring these things into action, so that when you are feeling barren and empty, you can still know that you have all in Christ. True emunah (faith) is not theory but practice. You must put emunah (faith) into action by doing what is right. The armchair gospel is not the Gospel of Jesus Christ. There are no armchair believers, but those who are actively about their Lord's business. They don't wallow in their own feelings or flounder in the valley of indecision. They hear the Word, believe it, and then get into action. Then, and only then, do true feelings manifest themselves.
Feelings and Irrationality
I know a woman who refuses to believe that baptism by immersion is the true biblical principle despite the very plain teaching in the Scriptures. Instead of believing what the Lord and His apostles clearly taught, she follows after her own feelings and rationalisation. Since she has good feelings she believes this is the Holy Spirit even though the thinking is muddled and confused. This is not emunah (faith) but open rebellion against the Word. This woman centres the Gospel in her feelings. She is one of the most unstable and confused Christians I have met. She does not have emunah (faith) in the Word and is denying her own salvation.
When Feelings Become "Spirit"
I know many people who base their religion solely on what they call their "testimony" which are, in the final analysis, feeling-based. They will discuss the Word quite happily until they come upon a contradiction, whereupon they immediately fall back on their feelings to justify their error.
Brethren and sisters, feelings are good, necessary and even vital when they flow from emunah (faith) in the Word, but when they become the object of belief itself, they are terribly dangerous. I speak as a person who was very much centred in the intellect and the feelings. I was also schooled in a religious tradition which placed great emphasis on these two things. And they used feelings particularly as a means to encourage emunah (faith) first and foremost in men, namely the leaders of their assembly or church. When I met contradictions in the Word of Yahweh I was encouraged to have emunah (faith) in the church leaders and in my feeling-based "testimony".
In the end I rebelled against this man-made worship because it led only to confusion of mind and lev (heart). I resolved I would believe in the Word of Yahweh first and foremost and build all my hope in that. I resolved that I would listen to everyone and anyone and test it against the Word. I have done that to the present day. As a result I feel a great inner strength and conviction. My feelings are at shalom (peace) and I have a knowledge which I know is based on what Yahweh says, and not men.
The Way of the New Covenant
This is the Way of the New Covenant. It is the way New Covenant Christians live. We are not afraid of the emet (truth) even if it challenges cherished beliefs because we are not trying to defend a man-made religious system. Therefore we do not live in anxiety, afraid that someone is going to come along and topple our doctrine and emunah (faith). Indeed, we welcome the change to discuss openly anything and everything.
From our beginning we have made an open invitation to every Mdessianic, Christian and non-Christian institution. And it is this: you come and preach your doctrine in our congregation and try to convert our people, and let us do the same in yours. Not one single church has ever accepted that invitation. Perhaps one will one day. I hope so. And why is that? It is because of FEAR.
Of Fear and Feelings
We have talked about feelings and now I want to talk about fear because feelings and fear are intimately connected. The Psalmist declared: "Blessed is the man who fears Yahweh, who greatly delights in His mitzvor (commandments)!...He is not afraid of evil tidings; his heart is firm, trusting in Yahweh. His lev (heart) is steady, he will not be afraid" (Ps.112:1,7-8, RSV).
Luke wrote: "So the messianic community (church)...had peace and was built up; and walking in the fear of Yahweh and in the comfort of the Holy Spirit it was multiplied" (Acts 9:31, RSV).
One of the reasons people are so muddled up in their feelings is because of pure, naked fear, or a lack of it. Many people think the word fear is "old fashioned" or "barbaric". Some Christians teach that the Gospel of Christ is one of ahavah (love) and so there is no place for such negative feelings as fear. But they are wrong, and moreover, very, very wrong.
The scriptures use the word "fear" in a two-fold way. In some places it speaks of fear as something wrong and sinful, and in the strongest terms forbids us to fear. As John says, "There is no fear in ahavah (love), but perfect ahavah (love) casts out fear" (1 Jn.4:18, RSV; also see Gen.15:1; Isa.8:13; Jer.32:40; Rom.8:15; 1 Pet.3:14). But in many other places in the Scriptures the opposite is said -- fear is praised as one of the surest tokens of true godliness, acceptable to Yahweh, and fruitful of blessings to us. David said: "You who fear Yahweh: praise Him...From Thee comes my praise in the great congregation; my vows I will pay before those who fear Him" (Ps.23:23,25, RSV; see also 33:18; 112:1; 115:13; Prov.28:14).
Indeed, the people of Elohim (God) have a special title in Scripture, namely, "Those that fear Yahweh." So what is the distinction between the two fears? It is simple: one is unbelieving fear, and the other is believing fear.
Fear and a Lack of emunah (faith)
Where fear is found connected with lack of emunah (trust) in Yahweh, there it is sinful and very hurtful. Yah'shua (Jesus) said to His disciples who panicked in the storm on the Sea of Galilee: "Why are you afraid, O men of little emunah (faith)?" (Matt.8:26; see Rev.21:8). Is it any wonder that the person who refuses to have emunah in (believe) the Scriptures but relies on feelings lives in fear? No it is not. And such a person is living in sin.
By contrast, the fear that is coupled with trust and hope in Yahweh is entirely indispensable for the spiritual life. The fear which has men for its object, or that which is temporal, is condemned by Yahweh. The fear with childlike confidence and love honours the Father and is what the Lord commands. Jesus said: "I tell you, My friends, do not fear those who kill the body, and after that have no more that they can do. But I warn you whom to fear: fear him who, after he has killed, has power to cast into hell; yes, I tell you, fear him!" (Luke 12:4,7, RSV). David said: "Yahweh takes pleasure in those who fear Him, in those who hope in His steadfast ahavah (love)" (Ps.147:11, RSV; see also 33:18).
Let Us Fear Yahweh Before Man
The Word is clear: let no one dispute it at the risk of his salvation! Are we to fear Yahweh? Yes, absolutely. But what kind of fear is this? Is it slavish fear? Absolutely not. It is filial. This fear is presented in the Scriptures as a source of blessing and power. Indeed, he that fears Yahweh will fear nothing else! The fear of Yahweh will be the beginning of all wisdom. The fear of Yahweh is the sure way to the enjoyment of Elohim's (God's) favour and protection. Paul said: "Since we have these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from every defilement of body and spirit, and make set-apartness (holiness) perfect in the fear of Elohim (God)" (2 Cor.7:1, RSV; see also Ps.54:4,11; Prov.1:7; 9:10; 10:27; 19:23; Acts 9:31).
You cannot make set-apartness (holiness) perfect without fear of Elohim (God). You cannot be sanctified without fear of Yahweh. You cannot make the promises work for you without the fear of Yahweh. Indeed, you cannot lose your fear of men and of the world without the fear of Yahweh! Of that I do most solemnly testify for I have proved this for myself.
There are some Christians who by their upbringing are led into the fear of Yahweh even before they come to emunah (faith). This is a very great blessing. Parents can give a child no greater blessing than to bring them up in the fear of Yahweh. When those who are thus brought up and brought to emunah (faith), they have a great advantage: they are, as it were , prepared to walk in the simcha (joy) of Yahweh. When, on the contrary, others who have not this preparation come to conversion, they require a special teaching and vigilance in order to pray for and awaken this holy fear.
These words may revolt many of you who have been brought up in our western, liberal way of thinking, but I do assure you they are true. And they are true not because I tell you so, but because Yahweh Himself says so.
Holy and Unholy Fear
But let us look at the elements of which this set-apart (holy) fear is composed which are many and glorious, as I am quite sure many of you will have a wrong mental picture of what it is.
(1) It is, first of all, HOLY REVERENCE AND AWE before the glorious majesty of Elohim (God). A person who reveres, and has awe for, Yahweh is never superficial, never forgets Him, and takes no pains to honour Him as Elohim (God). The Christian or Messianic who does not do these things probably does not fear Him. The prophet Zephaniah said: "Seek Yahweh, all you humble of the land, who do His mitzvot (commandments); seek righteousness, seek humility..." (Zeph.2:3, RSV; see also Job 42:6; Ps.5:7; Isa.6:3,5; Hab.2:20).
(2) Secondly, it is DEEP HUMILITY. Deep humility is afraid of itself and couples deep confidence in Yahweh with an entire distrust in itself. Conscious weakness that knows the subtlety of its own lev (heart) always dreads doing anything contrary to the will or honour of Yahweh. But because he fears Yahweh, such a person counts on Him for protection. And this same humility inspires him in all his communication with his fellow men. (See Luke 18:2,4; Rom.11:20; 1 Pet.3:2,5);
(3) Thirdly, it is HOLY ZEAL AND COURAGE in watching and striving. The fear of displeasing Yahweh by not behaving as one ought should incite us to be emunah (faith)ful in that which is least. The fear of Yahweh takes all other fear away and gives inconceivable courage and a certainty of victory. Yahweh said through Moses: "...fear Yahweh your Elohim (God)...by keeping all His statutes and mitzvot (commandments)...all the days of your life..." (Deut.6:2, RSV). And the prophet Isaiah declared: "Behold, Elohim (God) is my Yah'shua (Salvation); I will trust, and will not be afraid; for Yahweh-Elohim is my strength and my song, and he has become my Yah'shua (Salvation)" (Isa.12:2, RSV).
And remember -- and this is a great key -- out of this fear is born simcha (joy). The fear of Yahweh gives simcha (joy) its depth and stability. Fear is the root, simcha (joy) the fruit; the deeper the fear, the higher the simcha (joy). For this reason, David said: "You that fear Yahweh, praise Him!" (Ps.22:23, RSV). "You that fear Yahweh, bless Yahweh!" (Ps.135:20, RSV).
Can you see how true feelings are connected to this holy fear? You cannot praise and bless Yahweh in unholy, worldly fear. No way! If you are afraid, and cannot praise or bless Yahweh, then you do not fear Him! Are you afraid to displease Yahweh? You ought to be. If you are afraid to displease Yahweh you will never fear the world. For he who fears Yahweh will seek to do all that pleases Him, and for such a person Elohim (God) will do all that he desires in righteousness. The childlike believing fear of Yahweh will lead you into the ahavah (love) and simcha (joy) of Yahweh, whilst slavish, unbelieving, cowardly fear is utterly cast out.
Let this be your prayer: "O Father, unite my heart to fear Your Name. May I always be among those who fear Yahweh, who hope in His mercy and ahavah (love). In Yah'shua's (Jesus') Name. Amen."
If you fear Yahweh, then you may expect all the following fears to disappear: First, the fear of man (Isa.2:12-13; Heb.13:16) -- no one will be able to frighten you anymore; Second, the fear of heavy trial (Isa.40:1-2) -- the fear of Yahweh will see you victorious through all your personal difficulties; Third, the fear of your own weakness (Isa.12:10) -- you will rejoice in your weakness because you will be living in God'sstrength, and not your own; Fourth, the fear of the work of God (1 Chron.28:20) -- you won't be afraid to witness or be an active servant in the Kingdom because it will be Yahweh working through you, and not you of your own strength; and lastly, but not least, the fear of death (Ps.23:4) -- death will simply be a passing on to something better, and not the end of all existence and meaning.
Simcha (Joy) Through Fear
Total freedom, total inward security, freedom from fear, simcha (joy), inexhaustible strength and energy -- all these things and more can be yours, brethren and sisters, if you will live by emunah (faith) and not by feelings, and fear Yahweh our Elohim (God). Be honest -- let the Word of Elohim (God) speak to your lev (heart). Don't try to rationalise it away or try to make it fit into your world-view. That isn't Christianity, and the person who leans on his own feelings before the Word of Yahweh is leaning on the arm of flesh and cannot be saved.
In the words of Peter: "...beloved..., be zealous to be found by (Yahweh) without spot or blemish, and at shalom (peace)...grow in grace and knowledge of our Master and Deliverer Yah'shua the Messiah (Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ). To Him be the glory both now and to the day of eternity. Amen" (2 Pet.3:14,17-18, RSV).
Hou, Denmark, 12 August 1993; revised 23 August 2011 in Arvika, Sweden
 Learning the True Fear of Yahweh
This page was created on 16 October 1997
Last updated on 23 August 2011
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