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What Is Healthy Fear?

June 27, 2023

What Is Healthy Fear?

What Is Healthy Fear?

By Brooke Holt

“So have no fear of them, for nothing is covered that will not be revealed, or hidden that will not be known. What I tell you in the dark, say in the light, and what you hear whispered, proclaim on the housetops. And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell.” Matthew 10:26-28

Throughout this chapter of Matthew’s Gospel, Jesus has been warning his disciples of the struggles they would face as his followers. Just as Jesus had been persecuted, rejected, and crucified, his disciples would face many of their own sufferings. Following the warning, Jesus told them not to fear those who would inflict the suffering and persecution. Instead of fearing people, they were to fear God.

How could the disciples experience persecution and not fear those who were coming against them? Jesus assured them that truth will always prevail. Granted, it may not prevail in this world, but it will for eternity. Nothing happens that the Lord does not see or understand, and he will bring justice to those who have resisted him and persecuted his people.

The Lord Jesus Christ wanted that eternal truth to empower his followers to speak boldly all that they heard from him. Jesus wanted them to live with holy confidence. He was with them, would equip them, give them the words to say, and the power to withstand every earthly affliction.

Instead of fearing those who might persecute them, Jesus said to fear God. Jesus would defeat sin, Satan, and death through his cross and resurrection. Therefore, his followers would find their victory in him. People have no eternal power; Satan has no eternal power; and death ushers the believer into eternal life.

Jesus wanted his disciples to live with the healthy fear of God. That healthy fear would serve as motivation to spread the Gospel and build the kingdom of God even when opposed and persecuted.

Fear of God (understanding who he is and keeping him first) is the antidote to the fear of people of this world! May you live with that healthy fear that brings freedom and can overcome the opposition of people and all the forces of evil. You are more than a conqueror through Christ who loves you (see Romans 8:37).


Are you living in healthy fear of God or does another fear hold you? The Lord can empower you to overcome every earthly fear so that you may live as that conqueror. We would love to hear your thoughts in the comments.

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Draw Near

Let's face it, the Christian life is hard. Relationships take work. Christians forget. Sometimes it is tempting to go back to the days when God was not the center of our lives - to backslide. We are all faced with tremendous pressures to drift away from intimacy with Jesus and the community of the Church. However, the Lord invites us to pay attention, to move forward, to draw near, and to live lives of worship. Draw Near: Hebrews on Christian Worship is a small group Bible study on the Book of Hebrews intended to lead participants into a deeper intimacy with the living God in the context of New Testament worship. Draw nearer to God in authentic worship today!


Honest Prayer

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