Today I want to discuss a topic that many people struggle with, and if you have gotten the victory in this area, please pray for the rest of us. I am talking about the fear of man. This is something that God has laid heavily on my heart lately, and I refuse to go into 2019 with the enemy still getting the victory in this area of my life. Therefore, I am sharing this because the Bible says, “Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed.” (James 5:16).
The truth is that the fear of man is a trap of the enemy. Proverbs 29:25 says, “The fear of man brings a snare: but whosoever puts his trust in the LORD shall be safe.” When you fear man, you end up allowing others to control you. Fear of man will cause you to disobey God. Fear of man will cause you to say “yes,” when the Holy Spirit is telling you to say “no.” Fear of man will cause you to keep walking after the Holy Spirit has prompted you to witness to that person in your path. Fear of man will ultimately cause you to miss your destiny. That is why it’s imperative that you and I get to the place where the devil no longer has control over us in this area. This stronghold has to come down.
To address this issue, I’d like for us to look at Isaiah 51:12-13 (NASB) which reads as follows:
12“I, even I, am He who comforts you.
Who are you that you are afraid of man who dies
And of the son of man who is made like grass,
13That you have forgotten the LORD your Maker,
Who stretched out the heavens
And laid the foundations of the earth,
That you fear continually all day long because of the fury of the oppressor,
As he makes ready to destroy?
But where is the fury of the oppressor?
This passage reveals that the fear of man is really the result of having a faulty perception in three main areas:
A Wrong View of God. The prophet Isaiah relays in verse 13, “You have forgotten the LORD your Maker who stretched out the heavens and laid the foundations of the earth.” Fear of man is a form of amnesia where I have forgotten Who God is. When the fear man is ruling us and we make decisions based on an attempt to please man, God is not being properly viewed as the omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent Creator of the universe that He is. This improper perception of the heavenly Father must be dealt with if you desire to get the victory over the fear of man.
A Wrong View of Man. Verse 12 says, “I, even I, am He who comforts you.” God wants us to stop looking to man for comfort and approval. He goes on to say. “You are afraid of a man who dies and the son of man who is made like grass.” God reminds us that man is simply a mere mortal who will die, and like grass, he is temporary. When you seek man’s approval, you have effectively elevated a mere human being to the level of God (which is idolatry), and the inevitable byproducts are disobedience and being controlled by man. Only when man is viewed in the proper perspective, will you and I be delivered from the fear of people and be controlled only by the Holy Spirit.
A Wrong View of Ourselves. God asked the question in verse 12, “Who are you?” If I am going to obey God and overcome the fear of man, I need to have my identity secured in Christ. Our need for people’s approval is based on a fear that our value and worth is ultimately determined by what others think of us. Therefore, when you know who you are in Christ and have a correct view of yourself based on the Word of God, people will no longer be able to control you because your value and worth no longer rises and falls based on the thoughts and whims of man.
Beloved, Jeremiah 29:11 says, “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” If you are ever going to fulfill the plan and purpose that God has preordained for your life, overcoming the fear of man is an absolute must. In Acts 5:29, when Peter was told to stop preaching the name of Jesus, he said, “We must obey God rather than men” (NASB). Therefore, purpose in your heart that you will obey the Holy Spirit and trust Him with every outcome knowing that God is the omnipotent Creator of the universe, mere mortals have no power to negate what God has decreed and declared over you, and you are the righteousness of God in Christ.
How has this post challenged your thinking in this area? Please share by leaving a comment below.
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