Overcoming the Spirit of Fear By Babatunde Olugboji
Let me start this week by introducing the concept of two types of fear: Type 1, the fear of God, the ‘good fear,’ while Type 2 is of the stronghold variety, which is of the devil. The good news is that the Bible has an effective antidote to Type 2 fear. Some scholars have pointed out that the Bible in over 365 verses assures us that we have nothing to fear, meaning there is at least one ‘fear not’ for each day of the year.
So, the question is, how do we know if we are afflicted by the spirit of fear? Here are two indications:
1.Feeling unloved by God:
On the surface, this may not appear like an indication of fear, but it could be the most important way to know that you are in the chokehold of the stronghold of fear. If you are feeling unloved by God or questioning God’s love for you, perhaps you are fearful or unwilling to fully trust God’s goodness?
The accuser of the brethren would like nothing better than for us to hide from God, but whenever we have such a feeling, instead of hiding from God, we should run to him, the way a child runs towards his or her mother even when the mother is upset with the child. It may be difficult to believe God loves us when things are not going well, but at such times, the Bible comforts us in Psalm 32:7: “You are my hiding place; you will protect me from trouble and surround me with songs of deliverance.”
Do you know that the opposite of fear is faith? If we know that our God loves us, what do we have to fear? After all, “there is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.” (1 John 4:18). Even when it may not feel like it, you must hold on to the belief that God loves you because he does. Draw close to him, and watch his perfect love drive out fear.
2.Staying away from the gathering of the saints:
There is a common saying that when in danger, we are likely to respond in one of three ways: fight, flight, or freeze. So, we may end up fleeing from the very things that could be of help to us. Have you ever found yourself avoiding the gathering of the people of God, inadvertently or advertently? At such times, you may be worried or concerned about something, and instead of bringing that thing to God, you avoid dealing with it.
If you are in the category of those avoiding God during difficult times, remember what Jesus said: “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” (Mat 11:28-30).
Declare this week:
Lord, I know you love me, even when it does not feel like it. Help me to draw near to you every day of my life.
Kingdom Dynamics, a weekly column is written by Dr. Babatunde Olugboji, the President, Kingdom House, a non-profit organization in New Jersey, USA.