(Message given June 6, 2012)
Deuteronomy 10:12-22 (KJV) And now, Israel, what doth the LORD thy God require of thee, but to fear the LORD thy God, to walk in all his ways, and to love him, and to serve the LORD thy God with all thy heart and with all thy soul to keep the commandments of the LORD, and his statutes, which I command thee this day for thy good?
Behold, the heaven and the heaven of heavens [is] the LORD’S thy God, the earth [also], with all that therein [is].
For Christians, the fear of God should be a part of our love for Him. Unfortunately we live in a society where respect of authority is scoffed at and the worship of SELF, as in SELF awareness, SELF motivation, SELF actualization, SELF esteem, SELF control, SELF promotion, and SELF righteousness are the respected attitudes. There is little respect for parents, employers, law enforcement, leaders, people with different opinions or faith than ours, and the list goes on.
As a child of the 60’s, we took great pride in finding wrong and demonstrating against it. Rebellion against injustice, deception, racism, and anything else that didn’t rise to our level of “enlightenment” was the call of the times. I can’t say that those times were particularly wrong because many things were changed because some were brave enough to stand up for the right; but unfortunately a “spirit of rebellion” began to take over in many, simply personal attitudes. We became skeptical of all leaders and those in positions of authority. And as a result became very SELF righteous, forgetting that we were just as imperfect as those we assailed.
When we accepted Christ as Savior, we were forgiven but unfortunately still carry the dead, ineffectual ways of the past. Many of us have had parents, employers, teachers, law enforcement and others in positions of authority that have proven untrustworthy and undeserving of respect. BUT, we cannot walk in this same distrust when it comes to relationship with God.
WHY SHOULD WE FEAR GOD?
- God created all things, including us, so He is the ultimate authority on everything. Who can find fault with Him or His word? Psalm 33:6-9
- He alone can bring order not chaos if we will seek His face. Romans 13:1-7
- God opposes sin and separates Himself from unrighteousness. Exodus 19:20-22
- God will judge all. Hebrews 10:26-31
- God will bless those who fear Him. Psalm 34:9; Psalm 111:5
Christians should be examples of those who fear God. Do we obey His Word, or pick and choose the scriptures we will obey? Do we diligently search the scriptures to make sure we are pleasing in His sight or do we only feed on the Word of God on Sundays, knowing that the pastor is as fallible as we are? Have we purposed to be holy as He is because He commanded it? (1 Peter 1:14-16) Do we attend our local church regularly as God has ordained (Hebrews 10:25) or do we just drop in when we feel like it? Do we tithe regularly or do we steal from God? (Malachi 3:8:10) Do we truly love our brothers and sisters in Christ or do we have hidden jealousy, hatred, bitterness or ulterior motives?
Disobedience is rebellion and according to God’s word, it is like witchcraft. We should consider our lives and allow the Holy Spirit to “search us and know our ways”. We must purpose DAILY to live under God’s authority. That is the true way to show love for the Father.