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Should We Fear God?

Discussion in 'Christian Debate Forum' started by Robinson Crusoe, Feb 22, 2010.

  1. Yes!

    77.8%
  2. No!

    18.5%
  3. I Don't Know!

    3.7%
Multiple votes are allowed.
  1. Robinson Crusoe

    Robinson Crusoe New Member

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    Should we fear God? Nowadays, this seems out of fashion. However, our ancestors, in The West, were very afraid of God. Were they unenlightened idiots; superstitious morons; victims of a church-state conspiracy, to control the masses with fear; was this just something Authoritarian men taught women and children, in order to make them slaves to The Patriarchy? These are just some of the questions, Baby Boomers and their offspring are faced with.

    The Bible, often seems to be full of contradictions. The Skeptics Annotated Bible, for example, is dedicated to "exposing" those contradictions. Although, as a Christian, I've found its' objections: silly. However, they can be challenging and many people take it very seriously. In particular, I've noticed, young men do. So, what does The Bible have to say about it; bottom line it for me?!

    Ecclesiastes 12:13-14 "Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this [is] the whole [duty] of man. For God shall bring every work into judgment, with every secret thing, whether [it be] good, or whether [it be] evil."


    But my own little Bible study is kind of wimpy...
    Skeptics annotated Bible has dedicated an entire page to the question, "Should We Fear God?" It concludes that The Bible is confused on the question; it has two opinions on the issue and hence, is an absurd book. They break it down into two sides, on The Yes we should Fear God side, they site the following verses


    [font="Helvetica][size="2"]Leviticus 25:17Thou shalt fear thy God: for I am the LORD your God.

    Deuteronomy 4:10That they may learn to fear me all the days that they shall live upon the earth, and that they may teach their children

    Deuteronomy 6:2That thou mightest fear the LORD thy God, to keep all his statutes and his commandments.

    Deuteronomy 6:13, 10:20Thou shalt fear the LORD thy God.


    Deuteronomy 6:24And the LORD commanded us to do all these statutes, to fear the LORD our God.

    Deuteronomy 10:12And now, Israel, what doth the LORD thy God require of thee, but to fear the LORD thy God.

    Deuteronomy 14:23...that thou mayest learn to fear the LORD thy God always.

    Deuteronomy 28:68...that thou mayest fear this glorious and fearful name, THE LORD THY GOD.

    Deuteronomy 31:12Gather the people together, men and women, and children, and thy stranger that is within thy gates, that they may hear, and that they may learn, and fear the LORD your God.

    Deuteronomy 31:13And that their children, which have not known any thing, may hear, and learn to fear the LORD your God.

    Joshua 4:24That all the people of the earth might know the hand of the LORD, that it is mighty: that ye might fear the LORD your God for ever.

    Joshua 24:14Fear the Lord ... and put away the gods which your fathers served.

    1 Samuel 12:14If ye will fear the LORD, and serve him, and obey his voice, and not rebel against the commandment of the LORD, then shall both ye and also the king that reigneth over you continue following the LORD your God:

    1 Samuel 12:24Fear the Lord.

    2 Kings 17:39But the LORD your God ye shall fear; and he shall deliver you out of the hand of all your enemies.

    1 Chronicles 16:25The Lord ... is to be feared above all gods.

    Nehemiah 5:9Also I said, It is not good that ye do: ought ye not to walk in the fear of our God because of the reproach of the heathen our enemies?

    Job 28:28The fear of the LORD, that is wisdom.

    Psalm 19:9The fear of the LORD is clean, enduring for ever.

    Psalm 25:14The secret of the LORD is with them that fear him.

    Psalm 33:8Let all the earth fear the LORD.

    Psalm 33:18The eye of the LORD is upon them that fear him.

    Psalm 34:9O fear the LORD, ye his saints: for there is no want to them that fear him.

    Psalm 96:4For the LORD is great, and greatly to be praised: he is to be feared above all gods.

    Psalm 103:11Great is his mercy toward them that fear him.

    Psalm 103:13The LORD pitieth them that fear him.

    Psalm 103:17But the mercy of the LORD is from everlasting to everlasting upon them that fear him.

    Psalm 111:10The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.

    Psalm 112:1Blessed is the man that feareth the LORD.

    Psalm 115:13He will bless them that fear the LORD.

    Psalm 128:1Blessed is every one that feareth the LORD.

    Psalm 47:11The LORD taketh pleasure in them that fear him.

    Proverbs 1:7The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge.

    Proverbs 14:2He that walketh in his uprightness feareth the LORD.

    Proverbs 22:4By humility and the fear of the LORD are riches, and honour, and life.

    Proverbs 24:21My son, fear thou the LORD.

    Ecclesiates 5:7For in the multitude of dreams and many words there are also divers vanities: but fear thou God.

    Ecclesiastes 12:13Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man.


    Isaiah 8:13Sanctify the LORD of hosts himself; and let him be your fear, and let him be your dread.

    Hosea 3:5Fear the Lord and his goodness in the latter days.

    Malachi 2:4-5...that my covenant might be with Levi, saith the LORD of hosts. My covenant was with him of life and peace; and I gave them to him for the fear wherewith he feared me, and was afraid before my name.

    Jeremaih 5:22Fear ye not me? saith the LORD: will ye not tremble at my presence?

    Matthew 10:28, Luke 12:5Fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.

    Luke 1:50And his mercy is on them that fear him from generation to generation.

    Romans 3:10-18As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one: ... There is no fear of God before their eyes.

    2 Corinthians 7:1Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.

    Ephesians 5:21Submitting yourselves one to another in the fear of God.

    Colossians 3:22Servants, obey in all thingsyour masters according to the flesh; not with eyeservice, as menpleasers; but in singleness of heart, fearing God.

    Hebrews 10:31It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.

    1 Peter 2:17Honour all men. Love the brotherhood. Fear God.

    Revelation 14:7Saying with a loud voice, Fear God, and give glory to him; for the hour of his judgment is come.

    Revelation 15:4Who shall not fear thee, O Lord?
    [/size][/font]




    Wow, reading all of those pretty much blows me over. I don't have any questions left; I'm just scared of God and I know He will REWARD MY FEAR! Which is a huge bonus, but I'd still be scared of Him, even if He didn't, because He's big and huge and terrible and stuff like that. Oh yeah, and He's going to JUDGE everything I do! Yikes!!! Of course, some people are just too cool to be scared of that (roflol). Anyway... Here's the other side of the argument from Skeptics Annotated Bible. On the No side, they say, The Bible says, No, we should not fear God (and then they have a good laugh).


    [font="Helvetica][size="2"]2 Timothy 1:7For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.

    1 John 4:8God is Love.

    1 John 4:18There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love.
    [/size][/font]

    Wow, 3 verses on the no side, and 57 on the yes side. Well, it seems that there is an overwhelming number of verses commanding and/or encouraging fear of God and there is a few that might raise a few eyebrows, but they don't raise mine. My instincts just don't flare up when I read that, because I already know, from Secular Psychology, that Love does not = the absence of Fear, in fact, real love requires fear! But of course, I am not surprised by their incompetence, because, as The Bible says and lots of Bible Belters used to as well, The Fear of God is The Beginning of Wisdom (stupid!). Of course, Skeptics Annotated has produced a riddle for its readers. My link

    Riddles are humbling; we don't immediately know the answer; we have to work at it and people do come across riddles they "never" solve. That creates mystery and mystery is frightening.

    The first thing to remember about a riddle (other than that you will need encouragement), is that they are meant to trick you, generally by misleading you. i.e., a face that never weeps, leads you to think of a human face, but it is referring to a clock's face. (simple, if you know it!)

    Alright, so!, how are they misleading us here? Well, best way to begin is to break it down: Take 1 John 4:17-18. Would you be bold in The Day of Judgement, if you didn't know how to please God? You shouldn't! If you don't know what the rules are, you should be scared. God has given us the rules and He has proven His uprightness. So, if we have obeyed the rules, then we shouldn't fear his judgement. Of course, this begs the obvious! Why obey those rules in the first place? Well, if you aren't afraid of fire, then you are crazy! But, it's like the power of the state to throw me in jail. I fear that power, but I have nothing to fear from a judge, because I haven't done anything wrong. Of course, our judges nowadays can be crooked. So, we should fear that, but we don't have to fear that from God. The passage goes on to say, "...because fear involves torment." Oh! Well that makes sense. If you go before an upright judge, you know you are guilty of a terrible crime, which will get you a terrible punishment and you have no way of appeasing the judge, then your fear of him would torment you. So, we still fear God, but we aren't tormented by it and we are even bold, but don't get uppity. You better remember who you are dealing with and mind your place.

    What about 2 Timothy 1:7? Well, there isn't any riddle there. Skeptics Annotated Bible is up to their old tricks again; just read the verse in context. It is a letter from Paul to Timothy and Paul is telling Timothy, basically, don't be cowardly in your preaching; be bold, because God loves us and that should give us hope. Even Secular Psychology knows (or at least before it became inconvenient for Feminism, it used to) that if a child knows their mother is there to take care of them, they develop a sense of hopefulness, which will be ingrained in their character. If they do not know that, they will develop a sense of hopelessness and it will be ingrained in their character. What Christians should know, but Secular Psychology doesn't, is that you can overcome that through Christ.

    Well, that's the writing on the wall for Skeptics Annotated: "... Thou art weighed in the balances, and art found wanting." Daniel 5:27


    http://skepticsannotatedbible.com/contra/feargod.html
     
    Robinson Crusoe likes this.
  2. jerryjohnson

    jerryjohnson New Member

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    [I would rather change the word "fear" to "Revere".
     
  3. Adstar

    Adstar New Member

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    The over all message of the scripture is that those who are not right with God should indeed fear God. But to those who are right with God they should be filled with the love of God. People who are right with God do not fear Him.

    1 John 4
    18There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love.

    So rejectors of God should indeed fear Him, they should in fact be terrified of Him. Alas many are not

    Believers should be filled with joy and love for Him and know they are loved by Him.. Alas sadly some base their thoughts not on faith in Him but in their feelings of personal worthiness. A big mistake indeed.


    All Praise The Ancient Of Days
     
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  4. jiggyfly

    jiggyfly New Member

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    I agree with you and there are many believers who haven't realized the totality of what Christ has done for us. I like the way the NLT paraphrases this verse.

    1John 4:18 Such love has no fear because perfect love expels all fear. If we are afraid, it is for fear of judgment, and this shows that his love has not been perfected in us.

    I think that Paul's statement to the believers in Ephesus goes right along with this topic.

    Ephesians 3:16-19 I pray that from his glorious, unlimited resources he will give you mighty inner strength through his Holy Spirit. And I pray that Christ will be more and more at home in your hearts as you trust in him. May your roots go down deep into the soil of God's marvelous love. And may you have the power to understand, as all God's people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love really is. May you experience the love of Christ, though it is so great you will never fully understand it. Then you will be filled with the fullness of life and power that comes from God.

    I think that Paul is talking about maturing spiritually here and notice it's based on experiential knowledge and not religious paradigm or religious semantics.

     
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  5. RobinD69

    RobinD69 New Member

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    Define "FEAR"
     
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  6. Tombstone

    Tombstone New Member

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    "Fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom." -- Psalm 111:10
     
  7. jerryjohnson

    jerryjohnson New Member

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    Gen 9:2 And the fear (H4172) of you and the dread of you shall be upon every beast of the earth, and upon every fowl of the air, upon all that moveth upon the earth, and upon all the fishes of the sea; into your hand are they delivered.

    Psa 111:10 The fear (H3374) of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom: a good understanding have all they that do his commandments: his praise endureth for ever.

    Mal 2:5 My covenant was with him of life and peace; and I gave them to him for the fear (H4172) wherewith he feared (H3374) me, and was afraid before my name.

    H4172
    מורה מרא מורא
    môrâ' môrâ' môrâh
    mo-raw', mo-raw', mo-raw'
    From H3372; fear; by implication a fearful thing or deed: - dread, (that ought to be) fear (-ed), terribleness, terror.


    H3374
    יראה
    yir'âh
    yir-aw'
    Feminine of H3373; fear (also used as infinitive); morally reverence: - X dreadful, X exceedingly, fear (-fulness).

    I see this as man should be feared, God should be reverenced.
     
  8. RobinD69

    RobinD69 New Member

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    Then no we should not fear God we should be in awe of God.
     
  9. jerryjohnson

    jerryjohnson New Member

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    Maybe it could be both depending on which side a person is on. I believe there are some that should be fearful of God if they are working counter to His plan. I also think the word revere means a lot more than just awe, if you understand what I mean. He is an awesome God, as He is a Holy God, a Righteous God and a God of Wrath.

    Isa 13:9 Behold, the day of the LORD cometh, cruel both with wrath and fierce anger, to lay the land desolate: and he shall destroy the sinners thereof out of it.
     
  10. Robinson Crusoe

    Robinson Crusoe New Member

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    The opening post lists several New Testament passages, from several New Testament writers (including the words of Christ Himself), that all affirm the teaching of The Old Testament: Fear God. There does not appear to be any real basis for questioning that. Other than to actually question the validity of The Bible itself and of course, the status of Christ.
     
  11. jerryjohnson

    jerryjohnson New Member

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    Matthew 10:28, Luke 12:5Fear (G5399) him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.

    Luke 1:50And his mercy is on them that fear (G5399)him from generation to generation.

    Romans 3:10-18As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one: ... There is no fear (5401) of God before their eyes.

    2 Corinthians 7:1Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear(5401) of God.

    Ephesians 5:21Submitting yourselves one to another in the fear (5401)of God.

    Colossians 3:22Servants, obey in all thingsyour masters according to the flesh; not with eyeservice, as menpleasers; but in singleness of heart, fearing (5399) God.

    Hebrews 10:31It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.

    1 Peter 2:17Honour all men. Love the brotherhood. Fear(5399) God.

    Revelation 14:7Saying with a loud voice, Fear (5399)God, and give glory to him; for the hour of his judgment is come.

    Revelation 15:4Who shall not fear (5399) thee, O Lord?

    G5399
    φοβέω
    phobeō
    fob-eh'-o
    From G5401; to frighten, that is, (passively) to be alarmed; by analogy to be in awe of, that is, revere: - be (+ sore) afraid, fear (exceedingly), reverence.

    G5401
    φόβος
    phobos
    fob'-os
    From a primary φέβομαι phebomai (to be put in fear); alarm or fright: - be afraid, + exceedingly, fear, terror.
     
  12. Robinson Crusoe

    Robinson Crusoe New Member

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    Also, it bears mentioning, although it seems like a childish error, it is very prevalent: fear is not the opposite of love. Hate is the opposite of love and trust or faith is the opposite of fear.

    This is just basic psychology; our minds were crafted by God. We develop hope, because we trust our mothers to feed us. However, if our trust in them is without fear, then our perceptions become distorted. In other words, we don't see life as it really is; we see The World through rose colored glasses. People like that are idiots! Everybody knows one and no one can stand to be around them, for very long, because they won't quit with the goofy smiling! The reality is, mother could decide not to feed you and you know it. You might deny it, like an idiot, but it is still real. Go ahead and push her and see how much she lets you get away with, until she quits feeding you. She might not kill you, but you might end up a foundling! (baby in a basket, left on somebody's doorstep) On the other hand, maybe she will feed you to the chickens; they will eat anything, even babies! What is God going to do with most people? What did God do to Jonah? WHAT DID HE DO TO ISRAEL!!!??? WHAT IS HE DOING TO THE WEST RIGHT NOW!!!! And what did your mother do to you, once you were old enough to control your bowels, when you made a stinky mess on her leather sofa??!! You better be scared.

    Of course, traditional psychology steps all over the toes of political correct doctrines, like never hitting a child or sending them to bed without dinner. A child, who is raised to fear their own father, is said to be abused. That is moonshine, but that is what we are taught. So, it isn't surprising that nobody wants to say, we should fear God, because then He's a knuckle dragging, pea brained maniac, who wants to get drunk and beat the crap out of his wife and kids [​IMG]
     
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  13. Robinson Crusoe

    Robinson Crusoe New Member

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    The word studies you posted, don't seem to prove much. But, it does seem appropriate, to revere God. However, it also seems appropriate, to fear God.

    I revere, General George Washington. However, I do not fear him, because he is dead. I fear a city bus, but I don't revere it, because it is just a humble transport. A sailor may fear and revere a battleship, he sails on. Of course, his reverence and fear for his ship, should be lower, than his fear and reverence for God.
     
  14. RobinD69

    RobinD69 New Member

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    I can agree but I still feel we should not fear God as in be scared of Him because we all know we are saved and that He forgives and that we do not deserve His grace.
     
  15. jiggyfly

    jiggyfly New Member

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    I agree Robin it is illogical, who draws close to something they are afraid of? No one that I know and just look at the examples in the scriptures, when ever someone was afraid of God they withdrew from Him and tried to hide. Fearing (being afraid of) God is a lack of knowing God. KJV is a poor translation in several areas and this is definitely one of those areas.
     
  16. gregg

    gregg New Member

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    fear god and depart from evil. once you depart from evil there is no more fear. :rolleyes: those who continue in thier sinful ways should fear god. those who walk after rightousness are set free from fear. :rolleyes:
     
  17. wayofthespirit

    wayofthespirit More often partly wrong than wholly right

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    This is what happens when you use human words in relation to God who is a Spirit.

    Exactly like I have just done.[​IMG]

    Mike.
     
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  18. Robinson Crusoe

    Robinson Crusoe New Member

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    But what is motivating the righteous to walk in righteousness. Certainly, fear of God is part of what is motivating them.

    There is a huge difference between the dread of God, the apostate feels and the fear of God, the obedient one feels.
     
  19. Adstar

    Adstar New Member

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    Yes that is true. it is the beginning of wisdom. But it is not the ending of wisdom or the completion of the wisdom that God gives to those who seek Him. It ends up as the scriptures in the NT say that wisdom casts out all fear.

    If a person fears something they will investigate it to find out as much as they can about it. Fear motivates investigation and the fear of God has been the motivation for millions to seek out the truth of God.

    So in the beginning there is fear of God and in the end there is Love of God. It is a journey in ones relationship with God.


    All Praise The Ancient Of Days
     
  20. farouk

    farouk Well-Known Member

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    Part of it is, what do we mean by fear? Fear of judgment is linked with unbelief, or a state prior to conversion. Reverential fear is linked with faith.
     
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