Monday May 23, 2011
On first glance, you might be wondering what is so wonderful about the trait of fear in the man of Job. Often in our present society, it is not an enduring term that many people would want attached to their name. We sure don’t want others to find out what we are afraid of. I am not talking about this kind of fear that God described Job in Job 1:10 when he said to satan, “Have you considered my servant Job? There is no-one on earth like him; he is blameless and upright, a man who fears God.”. Later in the book of Job, Job is in the process of venting to his friends about his wows and speaks to this issue of fear when he says, “The fear of the Lord–that is wisdom.” (Job 28:28). We so often throw out phrases such as “the fear of the Lord” but I wonder if we stop and really take the time to meditate on what it really means. Job says that fearing the Lord is the essence of wisdom. If you want to be wise you need to fear the Lord. Solomon said in Proverbs 9:10 that “The fear of the lord is the beginning of wisdom.” So what does it mean to fear the Lord?
When I think of fear, I think of reverence or respect for someone. I have a fear (respect) of the patrol with a radar gun. I am fearful (respectful) of those who are in authority such as teachers, pastors, judges, parents, close friends, etc. Reverence or respect causes me to listen to what they are saying or to observe what they are trying to get me to do (observe the speed limits, understand an assignment, gain insight into a spiritual principle, etc.). Fear of a person causes me to open my senses to new truth and insight in my life and my future. Fear of God causes me to open my spiritual eyes to hear truth that can help me in my decision making in various relationships I come in contact with. The fear component gets my attention so that I can gain new perspectives of life and in turn gain wisdom. Teaching our children to respect authority early on will ultimately help them as they start their own journey with the Lord in fearing Him.
On this journey, it is essential that we have a healthy dose of fear when it comes to the fearing the Lord for the wisdom He can give us on this journey.