Understanding the Fear of the Lord Yahweh

We don’t fear God as some kind of hard task master; biblical fear is more like a
feeling of worship or awe, respect.  David showed his respect for God, and is a
good example for us (Psalms 22:23) says “you that fear (reverence) the Lord
Yahweh, praise Him; all you the seed of Jacob, glorify Him; and fear Him, all you
the seed of Israel”.  David asked a question in Psalms 25:12-14, which says “what
man is he that fears the Lord Yahweh?  Him shall He teach in the way that he shall
choose.  His soul shall dwell at ease; and his seed shall inherit the earth.  The
secret of the Lord Yahweh is with them that fear Him; and He will show them His

In Psalms 34:7-16, he says “the angel of the Lord encamps round about them that
fear Him, and delivers them.  O taste and see that the Lord Yahweh is good;
blessed is the man that trusts in Him.  O fear the Lord Yahweh, you His saints; for
there is no want to them that fear Him.  The young lions do lack, and suffer
hunger, but they that seek the Lord Yahweh shall not want any good thing.  Come,
you children, hearken to me; I will teach you the fear of the Lord Yahweh.  What
man is he that desires life, and loves many days, that he may see good?  Keep
your tongue from evil, and your lips from speaking deceit.  Depart from evil, and
do good; seek peace, and pursue it.  The eyes of the Lord Yahweh are upon the
righteous, and His ears are open to their cry.  The face of the Lord Yahweh is
against them that do evil, to cut off the remembrance of them from the earth”.

David prayed in Psalms 86:11-13 “teach me Your way, O Lord Yahweh, I will walk
in Your truth; unite my heart to fear Your name.  I will praise You, O Lord my God,
with all my heart; and I will glorify Your name for evermore.  For great is Your
mercy toward me; and You have delivered my soul from the lowest hell”.

Those who love God learn about this kind of fear by searching the scriptures;
Moses taught the Israelites in Deuteronomy 6:13,17-18,24, he says “you shall fear
the Lord Yahweh your God and serve Him, and shall swear by His name.  You
shall diligently keep the commandments of the Lord Yahweh your God, and His
testimonies, and His statutes which He has commanded you.  And you shall do
that which is right and good in the sight of the Lord Yahweh; that it may be well
with you, and that you may go in and posses the good land which the Lord
Yahweh swear to your fathers.  And the Lord Yahweh commanded us to do all
these statutes, to fear the Lord Yahweh our God, for our good always, that He
might preserve us alive, as it is at this day”.  

In Deuteronomy 8:6 he says “therefore you shall keep the commandments of the
Lord Yahweh your God, t walk in His ways, and to fear Him”.  In Deuteronomy 10:
12-13 he says “and now Israel, what does the Lord Yahweh your God require of
you, but to fear the Lord Yahweh your God, to walk in all His ways, and to love
Him, and to serve the Lord Yahweh your God with all your heart and with all your
soul.  To keep the commandments of the Lord Yahweh, and His statutes, which I
command you this day for your good”?  In Deuteronomy 13:4 he says “you shall
walk after the Lord Yahweh your God, and fear Him, and keep His
commandments, and obey His voice, and you shall serve Him, and cling to Him”.  
In Deuteronomy 31:12-13 he says “gather the people together, men, and women,
and children, and your strangers that is inside your gates, that they may hear, and
that they may learn, and fear the Lord Yahweh your God, and observe to do all
the words of this law.  And that their children, which have not known any thing,
may hear, and learn to fear the Lord Yahweh your God as long as you live in the
land where you go over Jordan to possess it”.

Through out the book of Proverbs, it gives us good nuggets; Proverbs 2:1-5 says
“my son, if you will receive my words, and hide my commandments with you.  So
that you incline your ear to wisdom; and apply your heart to understanding.  Yea,
if you seek after knowledge and lift up your voice for understanding.  If you seek
her as silver, and search for her as for hid treasures.  Then shall you understand
the fear of the Lord Yahweh, and find the knowledge of God”.  Proverbs 8:13 says
“the fear of the Lord Yahweh is to hate evil, pride, and arrogancy, and the evil
way, and the perverted mouth, do I hate”.  Proverbs 19:23 says “the fear of the
Lord Yahweh tends to life; and he that has it shall abide satisfied; he shall not be
visited with evil”.  So you see that we learn to fear the Lord Yahweh by reading the
Bible and observing it.

Joshua teaches Israel to fear the Lord Yahweh (Joshua 24:14-16, 24, 31) “now
therefore fear the Lord Yahweh, and serve Him in sincerity and in truth; and put
away the gods which your fathers served on the other side of the flood, and in
Egypt; and serve you the Lord Yahweh.  And if it seem evil to you to serve the
Lord Yahweh, choose you this day whom you will serve; whether the gods which
your fathers served that were on the other side of the flood, or the gods of the
Amorites, in whose land you dwell; but as for me and my house, we will serve the
Lord Yahweh.  And the people said to Joshua, the Lord Yahweh our God will we
serve, and His voice will we obey.  And Israel served the Lord Yahweh all the days
of Joshua and all the days of the elders that over lived Joshua, and which had
known all the works of the Lord Yahweh, that He had done for Israel”.

Daniel demonstrated that he feared the Lord Yahweh, his conduct was such as his
enemies couldn’t find any fault in him (Daniel 6:3-4) “then this Daniel was
preferred above the presidents and princes, because an excellent spirit was in
him; and the king thought to set him over the whole realm.  Then the presidents
and princes sought to find occasion against Daniel concerning the kingdom; but
they could find none occasion nor fault; forasmuch as he was faithful, neither was
there any error or fault found in him”.  Daniel didn’t compromise on God’s word.

True reverence for God must be expressed in good works and holy living (II
Corinthians 7:1) “having therefore these promises dearly beloved, let us cleanse
our selves from all filthiness of flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of
God”.  This holy fear actually brings joy (Psalms 2:11) “serve the Lord Yahweh
with fear; and rejoice with trembling”.

The fear of the Lord Yahweh is more valuable than riches (Proverb 15:16) “better
is little with the fear of the Lord Yahweh than great treasure and trouble
therewith”.  The Lord Yahweh takes pleasure in those who hold Him in such high
regard (Psalms 147:11) “the Lord Yahweh takes pleasure in them that fear Him, in
those that hope in His mercy”.

Unless we personally realize the awesome and majestic power of God, it is
impossible to have meaningful faith in one’s heart (Psalms 5:7-8; 89:7) “but as for
me, I will come into Your house in the multitude of Your mercy; and in Your fear will
I worship toward Your holy temple.  Lead me, O Lord, in Your righteousness
because of my enemies; make Your way straight before my face.  God is greatly to
be feared in the assembly of the saints, and to be had in reverence of all them
that are about Him”.

An awe and reverence for God is the basic meaning of the biblical idea of fearing

Though Christians should be free from the fear of humans, death and life in
general they must never lose the sense of the awe of God.  Such awareness not
only leads to true wisdom (Psalms 111:10) “the fear of the Lord Yahweh is the
beginning of wisdom; a good understanding have all they that do His
commandments; His praise endures forever”.

Jesus shows us how we can examine ourselves to see if we fear God (John 14:21-
23; 15:10) “he that has My commandments and keeps them, he it is that loves Me;
and he that loves Me shall be loved of My Father and I will love him; and will
manifest Myself to him.  Judas said to Him, not Iscariot, Lord, how is it that You will
manifest Yourself to us, and not to the world?  Jesus answered and said to him, if
a man love Me, he will keep My words, and My Father will love him, and We will
come to him, and make Our abode with him.  If you keep My commandments you
shall abide in My love; even as I have kept My Fathers commandments, and abide
in His love”.

Cornelius and his family were called “God fearers” because of their high respect
for the God of Israel and because they stood in awe of Him (Acts 10:1-8) “there
was a certain man in Ceasarea called Cornelius, a centurion of the band called
the Italian band.  A devout man, and one that feared God with all his house, which
gave much alms to the people, and prayed to God always.  He saw in a vision
evidently about the ninth hour of the day an angel of God, coming in to him, and
saying to him, Cornelius.  And when he looked on him, he was afraid, and said,
what is it, Lord?  And he said to him, your prayers and your alms are come up for
a memorial before God.  And now send men to Joppa, and call for one Simon,
whose surname is Peter.  He lodges with one Simon a tanner, whose house is by
the sea side; he shall tell you what you ought to do.  And when the angel which
spoke to Cornelius was departed, he called two of his household servants, and a
devout soldier of them that waited on him continually.  And when he had declared
all these things to them, he sent them to Joppa”.  Peter was able to preach to
them and they were saved.

Hebrews 12:1,14 says “wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so
great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which does
so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us.  
Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord”.

The apostle Peter says in I Peter 3:15, 4:1-3 “but sanctify the Lord God in your
hearts; and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asks you a
reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and reverence.  Forasmuch then
as Christ has suffered for us in the flesh, arm yourselves likewise with the same
mind; for he that has suffered in the flesh has cease from sin.  That he no longer
should live the rest of his time in the flesh to the lusts of men, but to the will of
God.  For the time past of our life may suffice us to have wrought the will of the
Gentiles, when we walked in lasciviousness, lusts, excess of wine, revellings,
banquetings, and abominable idolatries”.

If we are still walking in the flesh, we cannot please God (Romans 8:5-8) “for they
that are after the flesh, do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the
Spirit the things of the Spirit.  For to be carnally minded is death; but to be
spiritually minded is life and peace.  Because the carnal mind is enmity against
God, for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be.  So then they
that are in the flesh cannot please God”.  And we fear (reverence) God when we
obey Him.

Study by:  Harriet Bond
Date: October 25, 2011
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