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Sermon By:

Pastor Bob Paquet / Sunday, October 14, 2001

FEAR - THE CRIPPLING MOTIVATOR

One of the most debilitating and one of the most motivating of man’s emotions is “fear”.

Fear has the negative ability to totally debilitate and incapacitate individuals, families, communities and nations.

Fear can also be a positive motivator

Fear can be incentive to move forward, to overcome, to conquer, or to seek new goals.

On September 11th terrorists destroyed the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center and fear crept into the hearts of millions.

Individuals around the world responded by canceling trips, staying home, stocking up on foods and medicines, changing their financial plans, praying, etc.  Governments began to consider the various impacts of “fear” on society - emotional, financial, physical and spiritual.  Political, military, religious, economic, scientific, and industrial leaders were motivated to consider various “options” available to the terrorists, (e.g., - biological and chemical warfare) while investigating ways to protect society. The communication media throughout the world  became consumed with “bringing everyone up to date” concerning the “latest developments.” Individuals and companies undoubtedly began to investigate ways to “save lives with an emphasis on the bottom line.” Society and the world responded.
 

As individuals how we react to fear not only impacts our life on earth but our eternal destiny.

The Bible considers fear, “the crippling motivator”, from a different point of view.

Jesus said, “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.”
(Matt. 10:28)

Psalm 111:10 tells us that, “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom; ....”  It is wise to fear the Lord for He alone can deliver us, He alone can protect us, He alone is our shield and mighty fortress, He alone loved us so much that He was willing to sacrifice His Son that we might have eternal life.

“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. (John 3:16) In John 14:6 Jesus said, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.
 

    Jesus came to deliver mankind from the bondage of fear in this life and eternally

The Gospel message is one of love, hope and deliverance from all fear. It is a promise of eternal life from the sovereign creator of the universe to those who believe.
Jesus desires to be our protector against those who would destroy us. He said, “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full. (John 10:10)
 

If you would be free from fear:

Believe that Jesus is the Christ

“But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.”  (John 20:31)
 

Confess that Jesus is your Lord

“... if you confess with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. 10  For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved.” (Rom. 10:9-10)
 

Love the Lord and love your neighbor

“There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.” (1John 4:18)
Fear the Lord - “... Blessed is the man who fears the Lord, who finds great delight in his commands.” (Ps. 112:1)  “He will have no fear of bad news; his heart is steadfast, trusting in the Lord.  His heart is secure, he will have no fear; in the end he will look in triumph on his foes.” (Ps. 112:7-8) “He who fears the Lord has a secure fortress, and for his children it will be a refuge.” (Prov. 14:26)

Seek the Lord

“I sought the Lord, and he answered me; he delivered me from all my fears.” (Ps. 34:4)

Trust in the Lord

“The Lord is my light and my salvation — whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life — of whom shall I be afraid?” (Ps. 27:1)

Be confident in the Lord

“So we say with confidence, “The Lord is my helper; I will not be afraid. What can man do to me?” (Hebr. 13:6)
 

CONCLUSION

 Live your life without fear in such a way as to apprehend all that God has for you.  Act confidently and boldly to accomplish the purpose for which you were created knowing that He will never leave you nor forsake you.

As Theodore Roosevelt said in “The Critic” - “so that his (your) place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory or defeat.”
 

The Critic

“It is not the critic who counts, not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better.  The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who errs, and comes short again and again (but)....who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devotions, who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory or defeat.”

 Theodore Roosevelt - remarks made in a speech at the Paris Sorbonne (1910)


 
 
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