Hebrews 2:14, 15
Since the children have flesh and blood, he too shared in their humanity so that by his death he might break the power of him who holds the power of death—that is, the devil—and free those who all their lives were held in slavery by their fear of death (NIV).
All you have to do is turn on your computer to find articles, postings, or whole websites devoted to reasons that you should be afraid. “Don’t get vaccinated, because it will kill you.” “Get vaccinated, or you’ll die.” “The great reset is coming, and all your freedoms will be taken away.” “The mark of the beast is coming, and you’d better not take it.” I’m not even sure how I stumbled upon a post recently with a photo of a small scary-looking organism that was “found” in one of the COVID vaccines.
Why are so many people afraid? Should they be afraid? Some say that the fear of death is at the root of all fears. Hebrews 2 tells us that Jesus came and destroyed the power of death, and freed those who were held in slavery by their fear of death. There is nothing to fear—Jesus destroyed death itself!
What are we afraid of? Going against the culture around us by standing up for our values? Losing relationships that are important to us? Being mocked, or even worse, taken to court for something we have said or done? Suffering of any kind? We have brothers and sisters in Christ that have suffered all of those things, and even death—and God has given them grace to do so. Maybe our fear is something more personal, like losing a job, suffering from a debilitating disease, or losing a loved one.
Paul encourages us to “celebrate in our tribulations, knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance; and perseverance, proven character; and proven character, hope; and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us” (Romans 5:3–5 NASB). James tells us that in the end trials make us perfect and complete. We don’t have to be fearful, because God promises to be with us and use whatever happens to bring about completeness, hope, and love in our lives.
Jesus came to destroy fear—let’s celebrate that and allow God to fill us with love and hope!
TIME FOR REFLECTION
● What do I fear?
● What aspect of God’s character/Scripture verses can I meditate on today that speak to my fear?
● In what area can I step out with courage to obey God?
● How can I be an example and encouragement to others that are afraid?