Monday, 11 February 2019

"But with You there is forgiveness so that You can be feared" (Psalm 130:4).

There is a sense in which forgiveness means the end of fear -  "There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus" (Romans 8:1). When we are rejoicing in God's salvation, we rejoice in this - "perfect love casts out fear" (1 John 4:18).
There is another sense in which "the fear of the Lord" (Proverbs 1:7) continues after we've been forgiven. Filled with with thanksgiving to God for His free gift of salvation, we seek to glorify the Lord in our lives. Loving the Lord, who first loved us (1 John 4:19), we pray that He will keep us close to Himself. There will be times when we're looking to the Lord to lead us in His way - "This is the way, walk in it" (Isaiah 30:21). There will be times when we need to hear the word of warning - This is not the way. Do not walk in it. "The fear of the Lord" keeps us from thinking that we're closer to the Lord than we really are. It reminds us that we must keep on coming to the foot of the Cross of Christ. At the Cross, we rejoice in the love of our Saviour. We receive reassurance that "there is no condemnation for those who are  in Christ Jesus." At the Cross, we are challenged by the holiness of our Saviour. He calls us back from "walking in the flesh." He calls us to keep on "walking in the Spirit" (Galatians 5:16).  

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