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Healthy Fear – High-Tension Line

fear-of-the-lordKey Bible Verse: Smoke poured from his nostrils; fierce flames leaped from his mouth. Psalm 18:8

Bonus Reading: Hebrews 12:18-21, 25-29

Jann, a European who emigrated to the U.S. in his teens, dedicated himself to career success. Then a cousin gave him a copy of Josh McDowell’s Evidence that Demands a Verdict. His analytical accountant mind grappled with what he read, and came to the logical conclusion that the Bible accurately recorded the life and claims of Jesus, and that as the Son of God only Jesus could provide access to God. Jann became a follower of Jesus and started to explore his new life with some deep study of the Old Testament.

When I asked what he’d learned about God, he pondered a moment and said, “God is one tough guy. You don’t mess around with him.” Too many of us have overlooked that truth. Just before presenting the Ten Commandments, Moses warned the people of the consequences of lightly entering into covenant with God, because, he said, “The Lord your God is a devouring fire” (Deuteronomy 4:24). In effect he was saying, “If you don’t carry through, you’ll get burned.”

God’s nature surpasses ours. He’s 220 volts and we’re only wired for 12. Experiencing God in his fullness would blow our circuits. That’s why God told Moses that no one could look directly at his face and live (Exodus 33:20).

—Tim Riter in Not a Safe God

My Response: How Can I get close to this scary powerful God without getting “burned”? (See Hebrews 4:13-16.)

Thought to Apply: The hardness of God is kinder than the softness of men. —C.S. Lewis (British scholar & author)

Adapted from Not a Safe God (B&H Publishers, 2006)

Prayer for the Week: God, I confess that I’ve minimized your breathtaking holy otherness in my mind. Restore the fear that puts my sin and your salvation into focus.



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