2 Corinthians 7:1—Therefore, dear friends, since we have such promises, let us cleanse ourselves from every impurity of the flesh and spirit, completing our sanctification in the fear of God.
How do you feel when you hear people swear—using God’s name in a fit of rage, frustration, or even just crass conversation? When you get angry are you guilty of swearing? If we are used to this and unbothered, then we have a problem. A healthy reverence for God should make us shudder or feel offended (for Him) when we hear His awesome name taken in vain. Truly revering the Lord creates a fire inside us to protect His reputation. It transforms how we view Him and, as a result, how we are viewed.
We understand this on human terms. It should bother us when a young person fails to rise in the presence of an elderly person. We expect children to be respectful to their parents. It is considered poor taste to fail to speak respectfully in the presence of those who are in a position of authority. So when it comes to our heavenly Father, our Creator, and controller of our fate, does it not make sense that we should be consumed with even greater awe?
In Psalms and Proverbs we find seven marks that distinguish those who fear the Lord.
These are people:
1. Who hate and avoid evil (to include arrogance and perverse speech)—Pro. 8:13. Solomon wrote in Pro. 16:6, “ . . . one turns from evil by the fear of the Lord.” John Bunyan stated, “It is not the knowledge of the will of God, but our sincere complying therewith, that proves we fear the Lord.”
2. With integrity. Proverbs 14:2, “Whoever lives with integrity fears the Lord, but the one who is devious in his ways despises Him.”John Murray wrote, “The fear of God is the soul of godliness.”
3. Full of confidence. Proverbs 14:26 states, “In the fear of the Lord one has strong confidence . . .” This is also a blessing as we observed in Part 2!
4. Who are humble. Proverbs 22:4, “The result of humility is fear of the Lord, along with wealth, honor, and life.”
5. Serving as God’s ambassadors (Psa. 64:9; 118:4). The Psalmist wrote in 66:16, “Come and listen, all who fear God, and I will tell what He has done for me.”
6. That have undivided minds. Psalm 86:11, “Teach me Your way, Yahweh, and I will live by Your truth. Give me an undivided mind to fear Your name.”
7. Filled with happiness (Psa. 112:1). Psalm 128 starts out by noting, “How happy is everyone who fears the Lord, who walks in His ways!”
Let your life be marked as a Yahweh-fearing saint! Fear God! Something to think about . . . in reveration!
Within the reverential frame that “the fear of the Lord” has established, an across-the-board vision of humble, thoughtful, and God-centered living emerges.—J.I. Packer in The Way of Wisdom
©2016 Daniel York ARR. Reveration is the weekly devotional ministry of First Cause. If you would like to receive these devotionals go to www.firstcause.org and click on the “Click here to receive weekly devotionals” box. Unlimited permission to copy this devotional without altering text or profiteering is allowed subject to inclusion of this copyright notice.
Ecclesiastes 12:10-The Teacher sought to find delightful sayings and to accurately write words of truth. (Holman CSB)