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I Feared the People

May 21, 2019

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I Feared the People

Our fear  of people’s opinions can really warp us  into what we should not be.     When we are constantly trying  to please people  out of fear,  we will never have the peace and assurance  only God can give.     God alone is the one we need  to fear and respect.     We know for sure  the Lord loves us  because Jesus suffered and died for our sins — but,  in the same breath,  we need  to have a great respect  for the sacrifice God has made  on our behalf.     We should never allow our earthly fears  of people  to lead us  into sin.

King Saul did that,  and in doing so,  fell further and further  into sin,  because he just could not bring himself  to trust in God  above all things.     In 1 Samuel 15  we can read about  how Saul was commanded  to utterly destroy the Amalekites  and all they had.     And,  he was given the power  to do just that — but,  he didn’t rightly obey.     Instead of utterly destroying everything  as commanded,  he kept alive a bunch of the livestock, along with the king  of Amalek.

When the prophet Samuel saw that,  he said  in 1 Samuel 15:22-23,

Has the LORD as much delight  in burnt offerings and sacrifices    
As in obeying the voice  of the LORD?    
Behold,  to obey  is better than sacrifice,    
And to heed  than the fat of rams.    
For rebellion is  as the sin of divination,    
And insubordination is  as iniquity and idolatry.    
Because you have rejected the word  of the LORD,    
He has also rejected you  from being king.

And what did King Saul reply  to that scathing denunciation?

I have sinned;  I have indeed transgressed the command  of the LORD  and your words,  because  I feared the people  and listened  to their voice.

Yes,  we like to blame others  for our sins.     As king,  Saul had full authority  to do  as God commanded him.     The people would have obeyed him,  if he had not caved in so quickly.     He didn’t have to listen  to any suggestions  from the people,  who also knew full well  what the Lord had commanded.     And,  that’s how it is  with us.

We might become fearful  of those around us,  when they boldly  try to lead us away from God  and all that He has told us  in His word.     We know  how God has proven  that He is LORD of lords  and God of gods.     We know  how He created us,  how He paid  for our sins,  and how He will be our Judge.     He will be the final Judge  of absolutely everyone.     So,  whom should we fear?

Let’s give honor  where honor is due  and respect  where respect is due.     Honor and respect certainly are  not due  to those  who dishonor and disrespect  their Creator and Redeemer.     When we honor and respect the LORD,  He has a promise  for us.     David expresses that  in Psalm 31:19-20,

How great is Thy goodness,    
Which Thou hast stored up  for those  who fear Thee,    
Which Thou hast wrought  for those  who take refuge in Thee,    
Before the sons  of men!    
Thou dost hide them  in the secret place  of Thy presence    
       from the conspiracies  of man;    
Thou dost keep them secretly  in a shelter    
       from the strife  of tongues.

God will protect us  unto eternal salvation.     And so we say,  “Hallelujah!     LORD,  I take refuge  in You,  for You alone can lead and guide me  into the way  I need to go.     Keep me safe  in Your strength.”

Love,
Margaret

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A Christian devotional to glorify the LORD of lords and God of gods

 

Pray for our country.

 

This is the day which the LORD has made;
Let us rejoice and be glad in it.
Psalm 118:24

 

The word of the LORD is tried;
He is a shield  to all  who take refuge  in Him.
Psalm 18:30

 

Sing for joy in the LORD,  O you righteous ones;
Praise is becoming  to the upright.
Psalm 33:1

 

How blessed are those  who dwell in Thy house!
They are ever praising Thee.
Psalm 84:4

 

Just as a father has compassion  on his children,
So the LORD has compassion on those who fear Him.
Psalm 103:13

 

Oh give thanks to the LORD,  for He is good;
For His lovingkindness is everlasting.
Psalm 107:1

 

Glory in His holy name;
Let the heart of those who seek the LORD be glad.
Psalm 105:3

 

Not that I have already obtained it, or have already become perfect, but I press on in order that
I may lay hold of that for which also I was laid hold of by Christ Jesus.
Philippians 3:12

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