Conquering The Fear Of Others

Do not fear those who kill the body but are unable to kill the soul; but rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.
–Matthew 10:28

Contrary to popular belief, I do not think Moses was a particularly courageous individual. In Exodus 4 when God said to him, “I want you to go to Pharaoh and tell him to let my people go,” Moses basically answered, “You are talking to the wrong person, God. I am not the guy for that assignment.” Clearly, Moses was afraid of other people–and Pharaoh in particular. Had Moses succumbed to this fear, he never would have left Egypt. But Hebrews 11:27 says, “By faith he left Egypt, not fearing the wrath of the king; for he endured, as seeing Him who is unseen.” When Moses was certain God had spoken to him, he did not allow his fear of other people to prevent him from obeying God and experiencing His blessing.

What is keeping you from obeying God? Maybe you are afraid of what your mate is going to think. Maybe you are afraid that your employer will fire or demote you. Maybe you are even afraid of what people at church will say. The antidote to the fear of other people is faith in God’s power. God has the power to accomplish His plan for your life, regardless of other people.

Remember Jesus’s words in Matthew 10:28: “Do not fear those who kill the body but are unable to kill the soul; but rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” Whenever I am tempted to be fearful of somebody, I think, “What is the worst thing this person can do to me?” The worst thing anybody can do to you is kill you, but all that does is send you to heaven that much sooner. Jesus was saying, “Quit worrying about other people–the worst they can do is kill you. Instead, focus on God, who holds your entire life in His hands.” That is exactly what Moses did. Instead of fearing the wrath of Pharaoh, Moses focused on God’s power.

More than eight hundred years later, it was faith in God’s power that enabled three Jewish young men not to fear King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon. The king had set up a golden statue and demanded that everybody worship it. But Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego respectfully declined. The king said, “If you do not bow down and worship, you are going to be thrown into the fiery furnace.” The three men gave a classic response in Daniel 3:17-18: “If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the furnace of blazing fire; and He will deliver us out of your hand, O king. But even if He does not, let it be known to you, O king, that we are not going to serve your gods or worship the golden image that you have set up.” Yes, God is able to deliver us out of our problems, but even if He does not, we can choose to serve Him anyway–because ultimately, God wins, and so does everybody who chooses to follow Him.

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Today’s devotion is excerpted from “Fearless Faith” by Dr. Robert Jeffress, 2020.

Scripture quotations taken from the (NASB®) New American Standard Bible®, Copyright © 1960, 1971, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission. All rights reserved. www.lockman.org

 

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