The Fear of The Lord

Posted on 05/18/2008 by Rev. Benjamin R. Faust D.D.

AUDIO: dialup - broadband - podcast

TRANSCRIPT: (may not contain everything found in the audio above)

Good morning, and welcome to Abundant Living Ministries CyberChurch! I hope you came hungry for more of God, more of his Spirit, and more of his Word. Because those who hunger and thirst after righteousness will be filled.

I'd like to extend a special welcome to our first-time visitors. Make sure you click the welcome sign in the foyer before you leave, and you're invited to stay after the service for some fellowship, so we can get to know you a little.

Let's all stand to our feet and get started by going to the Lord in prayer.


Lord God, you are welcome in this place! We invite you to have your way with us today. Speak to us, and accept our worship. We have gathered here today to seek after more of you, to know you better, and to walk in more of your ways.

We also bring before you the needs of those who have asked us to pray on their behalf.


[ REQUESTS: ]

Please will you pray for Kevin who is anxiously awaiting the outcome of an interview for a job that he desperately Needs. He is 52 and needs work.
   –Beverley

I graduated college on the third. Now I need a job...Please, God, I need work. Thanks!
   –Ayumi Sapeur

[ ...other prayer needs... ]


Please remain standing, as we worship God with our offerings.

Turn around and touch one of the offering plates, and give as the Lord leads.


Click the pulpit for a notecard, and let's worship God with song.

FOREVER

Give thanks to the Lord our God and King.
      His love endures forever
For he is good. He is above all things.
      His love endures forever
Sing Praise, Sing Praise

With a mighty hand and an outstretched arm,
      His love endures forever.
For the life that's been reborn.
      His love endures forever
Sing Praise, Sing Praise

Forever God is faithful.
Forever God is strong.
Forever God is with us.
Forever.

From the rising to the setting sun,
      His love endures forever.
By the grace of God we will carry on.
      His love endures forever.
Sing Praise, Sing praise

TAKE ME IN

Take me past the outer courts
Into the Holy Place
Past the brazen altar
Lord I want to see your face
Pass me by the crowds of people
And the Priests who sing your praise
I hunger and thirst for your righteousness
And it's only found one place

Take me into the holy of holies
Take me in by the blood of the lamb
Take me into the holy of holies
Take the coal, touch my lips, here I am

YOU SPEAK

You speak, and the sound of your voice
      makes the mountains tremble
      makes the mountains tremble
You speak, and the words from your mouth
      make the oceans roar
      make the oceans roar

Who is there besides you
      who can speak into the void
      and by the power of your word
      birth a trillion blazing stars
There is none besides you
      who could speak into my heart
      dead and burried in my sin
      causing me to rise again

You breathe, and the wind from your mouth
      makes the hurricanes blow
      makes the hurricanes blow
You breathe, and the life from your breathing
      makes the dead man rise
      gives the dead man life

Who is there besides you
      who makes the sun to rise each day
      and by the beauty of your ways
      sets the evening sky ablaze
There is none besides you
      who will shake the universe
      and tear the endless skies in two
      as all creation worships you!

Holy, holy holy,
      Lord God Almighty
Worthy, worthy, worthy
      Lord God Almighty
The whole earth is full
      of your glory
The whole earth is full
      of your glory

You speak, and the sound of your voice
      makes the nations tremble
      makes the nations tremble
You speak, and the words from your mouth
      make the kingdoms fall
      make the kingdoms fall

Who is there besides you
      who can speak into my void
      and by the power of your word
      bring this rotting man to life
There is none besides you
      who could speak into my heart
      dead and burried in my sin
      causing me to rise again

You bleed, and the words from your mouth
      ask forgiveness for my sins
      ask forgiveness for my sins
You bleed, and the blood from your veins
      washes my sins away
      washes my sins away


Lord, we worship you... There is none like you in heaven or on earth... You hold our lives in your hand, and all we see around us, even to the most distant galaxy, you own it completely, it is all yours.

I ask that you would reveal yourself to us today, removing more of the veil from our eyes, so that we can get a glimpse of just how awesome you are.

Speak to us now by your Word, as we look to your Word to reveal a little more of who you are.

Thank you Lord.

Amen.


You can be seated.


As I was thinking about the subject of today's message, "The Fear of the Lord," God gave me the last song we sang. I don't know about you, but I know this is true for me; I think sometimes we tend to forget how powerful, majestic, and terrible God is.

And I say "terrible" in the Biblical sense, as one who inspires terror due to the magnitude of his nature. To fear God is not to be scared of him, for we are to come boldly unto the throne; but to fear God is not simply to reverence him, for the magnitude of his nature and his holiness contrasted with our depravity truly should create a holy and righteous fear of God within us, one that causes us to walk in all of his ways and depart from iniquity.


Let's consider this passage from Nahum chapter one, verses two through eight:

Nahum 1:2-8

2 God is jealous, and the LORD avenges;  The LORD avenges and is furious. The LORD will take vengeance on His adversaries, And He reserves wrath for His enemies;
3 The LORD is slow to anger and great in power, And will not at all excuse the wicked. The LORD has His way, In the whirlwind and in the storm, And the clouds are the dust of His feet.
4 He rebukes the sea and makes it dry, And dries up all the rivers. Bashan and Carmel wither, And the flower of Lebanon wilts.
5 The mountains quake before Him, The hills melt, And the earth heaves at His presence, Yes, the world and all who dwell in it.
6 Who can stand before His indignation? And who can endure the fierceness of His anger? His fury is poured out like fire, And the rocks are thrown down by Him.

7 The LORD is good, A stronghold in the day of trouble; And He knows those who trust in Him.
8 But with an overflowing flood, He will make an utter end of its place, And darkness will pursue His enemies.


You know, I think sometimes we get a little too... comfortable with God. We start believing that it doesn't really matter how we live, because we are under grace, forgetting that the New Testament tells us grace is not a license to sin, and abused grace is cause for the terrible wrath of God we just read about in the book of Nahum.

And to make the issue of the fear of the Lord a little more comfortable, we generally hear the fear of the Lord explained as being reverance for the Lord. But I believe, according to the whole of Scripture, this is only one component of the fear of the Lord, and by replacing "fear" with "reverence," we are robbing ourselves of a vital part of our walk with God.

Let's talk about seven of the reasons for and results of the fear of the Lord, and then we'll see what the Bible tells us about how to walk in this holy fear.


First of all, when we walk in the holy fear of the Lord, we please God. In fact, this is part of the simplicity of our walk with God. He wants us to fear him.

Deuteronomy 10:12-13 says,

12 And now, Israel, what does the LORD your God require of you, but to fear the LORD your God, to walk in all His ways and to love Him, to serve the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul,
13 and to keep the commandments of the LORD and His statutes which I command you today for your good?

So in summing up the laws of God, we see that God simply wants us to fear him, to walk in all his ways, to love and serve him with all our heart and soul, and to obey him, for all he tells us to do or not do is for our own good.

As a follower of Christ, our aim should be to please God in everything we do, say, and think. And the fear of the Lord is mentioned over and over again, more than anything else, as that which pleases God.

Psalm 147:11 says, "The LORD takes pleasure in those who fear Him, in those who hope in His mercy."

If we don't fear God, knowing that our sins are worthy of his fierce wrath which WILL be poured out upon the wicked, then how can our hope lie fully in his mercy?

But God takes pleasure in those who fear him, for all their hope is in his mercy alone, shown to us in the sacrifice of his Son so that we can be forgiven. This was the greatest act of mercy, the mercy for which those who feared God throughout the ages yearned, and the mercy in which they put all their hope.

So the fear of the Lord is the foundation of that which he requires of us, leading to a Godly life which reflects his nature and creates an atmosphere where the Spirit of God can dwell; and the fear of the Lord causes us to put all our hope in his mercy.


The second product of the fear of the Lord, after pleasing him, is security in the faith. Sure, most of us think we'll be walking with God no matter what may come. But we generally do tend to think that we will not be a statistic.

Many think they will not get cancer from smoking, so they smoke until cancer takes their lives.

Many think they will not reap negative consequences from placing themselves under the influence of alcohol, so they drink until they destroy their families and their lives.

Many think they will not catch a sexually transmitted disease, have to pay child support, and destroy their souls and their future marriage by engaging in illicit sexual practices, so they fornicate themselves into disease and destruction.

And many think they can stay on the path and live a life pleasing to God without having to fear God beyond reverence, so they abandon the holy fear of the terrible and awesome God, and end up in bondange, complacency, and even in walking away from the faith.

But this is what First Samuel twelve verses fourteen and fifteen tells us:

14 If you fear the LORD and serve Him and obey His voice, and do not rebel against the commandment of the LORD, then both you and the king who reigns over you will continue following the LORD your God.
15 However, if you do not obey the voice of the LORD, but rebel against the commandment of the LORD, then the hand of the LORD will be against you, as it was against your fathers.

So we see two options: either we can fear the Lord and obey him, or we can not. If we do, we have a promise: both we and the king who reigns over us will continue following the Lord.

Did you catch that? First of all, we will continue following the Lord. Without the fear of the Lord, don't fool yourself into assuming you won't be taken off the path. But if you do fear the Lord, you will continue following him.

Second of all, if we as a nation fear the Lord, the king who reigns over us will continue following the Lord.

Throughout Scripture, we see that every time Israel turned away from the fear of the Lord, they were given a bad king. There's nothing worse than living under godless government. And practically the whole earth is under the reign of godless kings, those who do not follow God, because we have lost the fear of the Lord.

Just consider the presidential race in the United States. What will the next four years hold? Marxism? Socialism? Liberalism? Who is following the Lord in their policies? We've allowed the fear of the Lord to be removed from our nation, so we should not wonder why those who rule over us have strayed from the Lord, or have never followed him at all.

So not living in the holy fear of the Lord does not only put you at risk of falling away from his ways, it also is part of a bigger picture, society as a whole; and when a nation loses the fear of the Lord, they are on a downhill road that leads to hell.

Let's learn the fear of the Lord, and let's walk in it.

So the fear of the Lord pleases God, and the fear of the Lord gives us security in the Faith.

The third thing the fear of the Lord brings us is the blessings of God.

We read this in the book of Psalms, chapter 128, verses one through four:

1 Blessed is every one who fears the LORD, who walks in His ways.
2 When you eat the labor of your hands, you shall be happy, and it shall be well with you.
3 Your wife shall be like a fruitful vine in the very heart of your house, your children like olive plants all around your table.
4 Behold, this is how the man will be blessed who fears the LORD.


Let's take a closer look at the blessings that come to those who fear the Lord and walk in his ways.

First it says, "When you eat the labor of your hands, you shall be happy, and it shall be well with you."

First of all, this does not say "IF you eat the labor of your hands," but "WHEN you eat the labor of your hands." Have you ever worked and worked and labored and toiled, but no fruit ever came of it?

The fear of the Lord will result in the blessing of prosperity; not necessarily the modern-day definition of the word, but the Biblical definition, as it says elsewhere in Scripture about the righteous man, "And whatever he does shall prosper." You may never be rich in material wealth, but what you do will bear fruit. You WILL eat the labor of your hands. You WILL reap rewards from what you do, because you fear the Lord and walk in his ways.

Next, this says that when you reap the reward of your labor, you will be happy, and it will be well with you.

Contentment is a blessing that is greater than all the earthly riches in the world, and no amount of silver or gold can buy it. But if you fear the Lord, you will have contentment. You will find happiness in what God gives you, and it will be well with you. You will have that level of peace and contentment than can only come from God.

Next this says, "Your wife shall be like a fruitful vine in the very heart of your house, your children like olive plants all around your table." So if you fear God, he will bless your home. There are people in Scripture who feared the Lord but did not have children until very late in life. But God's will for them, becoming the desires of their hearts, was brought to fruition at the perfect time, because they feared him and walked in his ways.

The divorce rate is over 60% and rising. Homes are falling apart. And as the home disintegrates, society pays an uncalcuable price. But the fear of God will make your home a place of peace and and place of life. It will not radiate death as so many homes do today, but it will radiate the life of a household and a family who walk in the fear of the Lord.


So the fear of the Lord pleases God, gives us security and surity in the Faith, and brings the blessings of God on us, our labors, and our home.

And the fourth thing the fear of the Lord brings us is knowledge, wisdom, and understanding.

Psalm 111:10 says, "The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom; A good understanding have all those who do His commandments. His praise endures forever."

And Proverbs 1:7 says, "The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge, But fools despise wisdom and instruction."

Last week we read the passage in James which tells us that if we need wisdom, we should ask God for it, and if we don't believe he will give it to us, he won't.

Well, the fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge. Do you want to know God and be convinced that he will do what the Bible says?

Then learn the fear of the Lord. It's the beginning of knowledge. And I believe you cannot truly know who God really is until you learn to fear him, for the fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge.

And as you fear him and know him, you will gain wisdom. Wisdom is the right application of knowledge. More specifically, wisdom is the Godly application of knowledge, which is the only truly right application of that knowledge.

If we aren't walking in wisdom, then we're walking in foolishness. And if we haven't learned the fear of the Lord, we aren't walking in wisdom, for the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.

The early schools in America, even Harvard and Yale, understood this. The Bible was the primary text book, and as students learned to fear God and walk in his ways, and only then, they could gain true knowledge, wisdom, and understanding.

No wonder test scores are falling and illiteracy among highschool graduates is rising. The fear of the Lord has been removed from our schools, and the result is that Godly knowledge, along with wisdom and understanding, are removed as well.


It's also interesting to reflect upon political figures from the not-so-distant past. Those whose policies more closely reflected the Bible seemed to have wisdom in dealing with the troubles of the time, while those whose policies were farther away from the Word of God often created disasters.

I believe the difference was in their level of Godly fear. And judging from the policies of the upcoming leaders, we can expect more disasters from their decisions. Their decisions can reflect only the amount of wisdom as their fear of the Lord allows. The less fear of God, the less wisdom.

And the same is true for your life, your household, your family, your church, your job, and anything else in which you play a role. If you do not fear the Lord, you will make foolish decisions, and disasters will be created. But if you learn the fear of the Lord and therefore walk in his ways, you will make wise decisions, and whatever you do will prosper.


So the fear of the Lord pleases God, gives security in the Faith, brings the blessings of God, and births knowledge, wisdom, and understanding.

And the fifth thing the knowledge of the Lord brings us is protection.

During the time of Moses, when the Israelites were slaves in Egypt, God sent Moses to demand their freedom, and sent plagues upon the Egyptians when Pharoe refused to let God's people go.

Let's read about one of these plagues, and see what the result of the fear of the Lord was, even on the Egyptians.

Reading from Exodus chapter nine, verses 18 through 25:

Exodus 9:18-25

18 "'Behold, tomorrow about this time I will cause very heavy hail to rain down, such as has not been in Egypt since its founding until now.
19 Therefore send now and gather your livestock and all that you have in the field, for the hail shall come down on every man and every animal which is found in the field and is not brought home; and they shall die.'"

20 He who feared the word of the LORD among the servants of Pharaoh made his servants and his livestock flee to the houses.
21 But he who did not regard the word of the LORD left his servants and his livestock in the field.

22 Then the LORD said to Moses, "Stretch out your hand toward heaven, that there may be hail in all the land of Egypt—on man, on beast, and on every herb of the field, throughout the land of Egypt."
23 And Moses stretched out his rod toward heaven; and the LORD sent thunder and hail, and fire darted to the ground. And the LORD rained hail on the land of Egypt.
24 So there was hail, and fire mingled with the hail, so very heavy that there was none like it in all the land of Egypt since it became a nation.
25 And the hail struck throughout the whole land of Egypt, all that was in the field, both man and beast; and the hail struck every herb of the field and broke every tree of the field.


So first we see that some of the Egyptians feared the word of the Lord. And even though God's plagues were against the Egyptians, they received some protection from this particular plague simply because they feared the word of God.

In verse 25 we read, "And the hail struck throughout the whole land of Egypt, all that was in the field..." But it did NOT strike those who feared the Word of the Lord and obeyed it, taking their livestock and servants to safety.

If you are lacking in the fear of God, you are more likely to take his word as a gentle suggestion instead of a strong command. But there is safety and protection to those in whom God is pleased, and he is pleased with those who fear and obey him.

You see, if you walk in the fear of the Lord, you will please him, you will walk in his ways, his blessings will be upon you, and you will have Godly knowledge, wisdom, and understanding. And these build a hedge of protection, leading you in paths of righteousness instead of ways of destruction; and as you fear God and obey the leading of his Holy Spirit, you will be protected from dangers unseen, traps of the enemy, and deceptions and lies.


So the fear of the Lord pleases God, gives security in the Faith, brings the blessings of God, births knowledge, wisdom, and understanding, and builds a hedge of protection around us.

And the sixth result of the fear of the Lord is morality, honor, and equality.

Leviticus 19:32 says, "You shall rise before the gray headed and honor the presence of an old man, and fear your God: I am the LORD." And Leviticus 15:17 says, "Therefore you shall not oppress one another, but you shall fear your God; for I am the LORD your God."

These two examples of laws connected to the fear of God display just two results of that holy fear: Honoring others, and oppressing no one.

If we truly honored others, there would be no adultery, no fornication, no murder, abortion, or euthenasia, no stealing, no lying, no coveting, and no verbal or physical abuse.

And if we truly oppressed no one, there would be no tyrany, no division between social classes, no oppressive work environments, and much happier families and communities.

So true morality has its roots in the fear of the Lord. For if we understand honor and equality, we will keep all the laws of God, and to have true knowledge, wisdom, and understanding, we must first fear God.


So the fear of the Lord pleases God, gives security in the Faith, brings the blessings of God, births knowledge, wisdom, and understanding, builds a hedge of protection around us, and builds morality, honor, and equality.

And the seventh result of the fear of the Lord is deliverance.

Proverbs 14:27 says, "The fear of the LORD is a fountain of life, to turn one away from the snares of death."

What does this mean? The snares of death? Well, they're all around you. They jump out at you through your television, magazines, billboards, and the radio. They come to you through co-workers, friends, and acquaintances. They come from within, from the flesh that constantly wages war with the spirit.

They even come from the pulpit, in the form of watered-down truth, a partial and therefore false Gospel, and the traditions and doctrines of demons and of men.

And many are being led astray. Many bought into the "blab it and grab it" and "give it and get rich" teachings associated with the Charasmatic movement, and now many are buying into the lies, which in my opinion are many times more dangerous, of the Emergent or Post-Modern movement, which seeks self-expression and the spiritual path of greatest comfort, instead of the fear of the Lord and seeking his ways, not ours, within the pages of his Holy Word.

The fear of God has been effectively removed from our society, even from our churches, and then we wonder why we don't have deliverance from addictions, sinful lifestyles, and deceptions.

But without the fear of the Lord, we are in a wretchedly desperate condition. Without the fear of the Lord, we do not please God; we do not walk in all his ways; we do not have true security in the Faith; we do not have his full blessings on our labors, our families, and our homes; we do not have a full knowledge of God, wisdom, and understanding; we are lacking that strong hedge of protection; we fall short in morality, honor, and equality; and we do not have deliverance from those things which would bind us and lead us to destruction.

So there is only one thing left to be answered: How can we learn the fear of the Lord?

Well, the answer to that is in the Word of God, and is very clearly layed out in Proverbs chapter two. Let's read this together.

Proverbs 2

1 My son, if you receive my words, and treasure my commands within you,
2 So that you incline your ear to wisdom, and apply your heart to understanding;
3 Yes, if you cry out for discernment, and lift up your voice for understanding,
4 If you seek her as silver, and search for her as for hidden treasures;
5 Then you will understand the fear of the LORD, and find the knowledge of God.
6 For the LORD gives wisdom; from His mouth come knowledge and understanding;
7 He stores up sound wisdom for the upright; He is a shield to those who walk uprightly;
8 He guards the paths of justice, and preserves the way of His saints.
9 Then you will understand righteousness and justice, equity and every good path.
10 When wisdom enters your heart, and knowledge is pleasant to your soul,
11 Discretion will preserve you; understanding will keep you,
12 To deliver you from the way of evil, from the man who speaks perverse things,
13 From those who leave the paths of uprightness to walk in the ways of darkness;
14 Who rejoice in doing evil, and delight in the perversity of the wicked;
15 Whose ways are crooked, and who are devious in their paths;
16 To deliver you from the immoral woman, from the seductress who flatters with her words,
17 Who forsakes the companion of her youth, and forgets the covenant of her God.
18 For her house leads down to death, and her paths to the dead;
19 None who go to her return, nor do they regain the paths of life—
20 So you may walk in the way of goodness, and keep to the paths of righteousness.
21 For the upright will dwell in the land, and the blameless will remain in it;
22 But the wicked will be cut off from the earth, and the unfaithful will be uprooted from it.


Doesn't that sum up everything we've talked about today? And it begins with the secret to learning and walking in the fear of the Lord!

Let's take a look at this. This is how you can learn the fear of the Lord that will please God, give you security in the Faith, bring the blessings of God upon you, give you knowledge, wisdom, and understanding, build a hedge of protection around you, establish morality, honor, and equality, and bring you deliverance.

Listen carefully.

First we read, "My son, if you receive my words, and treasure my commands within you, so that you incline your ear to wisdom, and apply your heart to understanding; Yes, if you cry out for discernment, and lift up your voice for understanding; If you seek her as silver, and search for her as for hidden treasures; THEN you will understand the fear of the Lord, and find the knowledge of God."

Now I'd like to point out that the first few words, "My son, if you receive my words," does not begin with "if you receive my words." Rather, it begins with, "My son."

Are you a part of the family of God? Are you a son or daughter of the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords? If not, or if you're not sure that Jesus is your Lord and Savior, make sure of that today. Just receive Jesus as the Lord and Savior of your life right now, and he will come inside and bring you to life.

So for the children of God, we have the Holy Spirit bringing to life within us the Word of God. But that Word cannot come to life within us if we're not putting it there. And if you are not reading the Bible, and reading it in the context of putting it into practice, then you haven't even started on the road to learning the fear of the Lord.

The Egyptians feared the word of the Lord because they had listened and they had seen it to be true. But if they had not truly listened, they would not have recognized the hand of God and would not have feared him.

So start reading the Bible every single day. When you have a break at work, pick up your Bible instead of the TV guide or some other magazine, and read it. Make a habbit of reading the Bible and praying at the very beginning of every day. Have a daily devotional, with your family if you can, and read the Bible together.

Meditate upon the Word. Figuratively speaking, bind it upon your forehead, have it ever before you, engraving it, burning it, upon the tablets of your heart. This is the beginning of the fear of the Lord, which is the beginning of seeing his kingdom reign in your life.

So we receive the Word of God, and treasure his commands within us. If you've lost your hunger for the Word, pray for that hunger to grow, and then read anyway. And God will begin to bring it to life, until you treasure it within you.

And this treasuring is not only a matter of desire -- it is a matter of appropriation. What place does the Word of God hold in your life, and in your heart? Is the ball game more important? Is your favorite television show more important? Is a magazine more important? Is a video game or the Internet more important?

Ball games aren't wrong, some television shows aren't wrong, some magazines aren't wrong, and computers aren't evil. But what value do they have next to the Word of God? Do we neglect reading the Bible and do these things instead? If so, we are not treasuring God's Word. We are not giving it the highest value. And we are not on the road to the fear of the Lord.

So let's adjust our priorities. Let's give the Word of God higher value, or rather let's adjust our perception of its value, by our actions, and we will thereby be treasuring his commands within us.

We also treasure his commands by listening for life instructions while we read. The act of reading itself is not true treasuring of the words we're reading. Instead, we should be listening for the voice of the Holy Spirit, speaking to us through the words of Scripture.

We might be reading about how our bodies are the temple of the Holy Spirit. If we're listening for the commands of God as they relate to our lifestyles, attitudes, and the conditions of our heart, we will ask ourselves what this means. Are we treating our body like the temple of the Holy Spirit? If not, we apply the Word of God to our life, treasuring his words over whatever we're doing that is destroying that temple.

We might be reading about how we should bring every thought captive to the obedience of Christ. What does this mean in our life? Since you treasure his commands within you, you begin to compare the words of Scripture to your life, both outer and inner, and when you find discrepancies, places in which you are not walking in the ways of God, then you apply the Word of God to that area. And after time, this will become something you do automatically.

This is treasuring his commands within you, and you are on the road to learning the fear of the Lord.


So we receive his words, treasure his commands within us, which is inclining our ear to wisdom, and applying our heart to understanding.

And as we treasure his words in this way, we also treasure the things they teach us about the nature and the ways of God, his character, his attributes. For the more we know about the full nature of God, the more we will love and fear him.

Then it says that we should cry out for discernment, and lift up our voice for understanding. "Lord, I ask for discernment! Please give me understanding of your Word! May I discern your voice, and what you're saying to me through your Word, and may I understand what you are speaking to me."

This goes on to say we should seek wisdom, discernment, and understanding as silver or as a hidden treasure. If you were convinced that a book contained a hidden code which, when you found it, would result in your receiving a trillion dollars, would you pick up the book just every once in a while? Would you read it with only partial interest and treat it as some type of religious duty? Or would you treat it like a treasure of incredible worth, and read it, and read it, and seek to see what it is really saying and how that applies to your search for its subsequent treasure?

Well the fear of the Lord puts a trillion dollars to shame. If given a choice between the two, most people today would not hesitate to grab the trillion dollars, not thinking twice about the fear of the Lord. In fact, most people would decline or even run away from the fear of the Lord even if it cost them time money to do so. I know this because people do it every day.

But if we only understood the true value of the fear of the Lord, and if we only understood the tremendous cost of abandoning it, we would not look twice at the trillion dollars, and would grab hold of the fear of God like our lives depended upon it. And when it boils down to it, they do.

So we receive the Word of God, treasuring his commands within us, bending our ear for wisdom, and searching for understanding with our whole hearts; we cry out to God for discernment, and lift up our voice to him for understanding; we seek as for silver, as for hidden treasures.

And when you do this, you will begin to understand the fear of the Lord, and you will find the knowledge of God. You see, the Lord gives wisdom. From his mouth come knowledge and understanding. He stores up sound wisdom for the upright.

And this says he is a shield to those who walk uprightly, our protection.

He guards the paths of justice, and preserves the way of his saints. This is security in the Faith.

Then you will understand righteousness and justice, equity and every good path. This is morality, honor, and equality.

When wisdom enters your heart, and knowledge is pleasant to your soul, discretion will preserve you; understanding will keep you. This is knowledge, wisdom, and understanding.

To deliver you from the way of evil, from the man who speaks perverse things. This is deliverance.

To deliver you from the immoral woman, from the seductress who flatters with her words, who forsakes the companion of her youth, and forgets the covernant of her God. This sounds a lot like the apostate church and its false teachings. This could also represent the vices of the world, and the entrapments of sin and addition.

So you will walk in the way of goodness, and keep to the paths of righteousness. This is morality, honor, and equity.

For the upright will dwell in the land, and the blameless will remain in it; but the wicked will be cut off from the earth, and the unfaithful will be uprooted from it.

I'd like for the ministry team to come to the front now.

And I know that all of us need more holy fear of God. Not dread or terror, for that is reserved for those who do not fear him; but holy fear, knowing that he is God, he is not under any other authority, none can stop him from doing what he will do, he cannot tollerate sin, and aside from his mercy embodied in the man Jesus Christ and through his blood, we have no hope.

Let's gather at the altar and just seek after him.


Lord, give us hearts of repentance! May we rend our hearts, and cry out for mercy!

Forgive our complacency! Forgive our resignation to comfort at the expense of running after you!

Forgive us for reducing the fear of God to nothing more than reverence, and for separating us from the fullness of your kingdom in our lives.

Just seek him now. Lay your heart bare before him. And set your face like flint in the direction he is calling you to walk -- a direction of learning the fear of the Lord, and walking in all of his ways.

If you need to go, you're free to do so, and if you want to carry on a conversation, please take it outside so this time of ministry isn't disturbed.

If you want to accept Jesus as your Lord and Savior, please instant message someone on the ministry team.

Let's seek after the fear of the Lord, and he will be found of us! Come.