It’s often been a confusing process for me to get a handle on the specific meaning of the phrase “fear of God.” At different times I have interpreted it in a number of different ways. But recently, in reading the New Testament’s Letter to the Hebrews I think I have found a meaning for this fear that is more definitive. In Hebrews 4: 1 the answer seems clear:the “fear” of God is the fear we should all have of missing the one thing in life that is worthwhile – God! We should be afraid of becoming so wrapped up in busy-ness, in pride, in possessions, in money, in power, in sex, in education, in success – basically in “self” – that we missGod.
If we miss love, we miss the meaning of life itself. If anything is scary, eating, sleeping, breathing, and taking up space for 70 or more years on this planet without realizing why we’re here – that’s scary! But it’s all based on the powerful influence of choice which God has given us in His great love for us. The power to choose You is also the power to ignore You, and that’s what we should fear.
Fear is a great motivator. If we realize that from the moment of our birth, when life awakes within us, to the moment of our death that the push and pull of our senses constantly edges us in directions that ignore You, we should be afraid. If we do not maintain the fear of God not being the primary component of everything we do in life, we miss the choice that has been given to us. The Fear of God is also God’s own Fear of losing us.