Thanks for joining me for our Philippians on Friday devotion. Today we’re moving on in chapter one to verse 28. We’ll unwrap the entire verse on a later day. Today I want to focus on the first phrase of that verse:
…And in nothing terrified by your adversaries….
There is an epidemic of fear in our world today. People are afraid. ISIS, global economic uncertainty, racism, school shootings, violent crime, political gridlock, and a host of other social ailments are relentlessly eroding people’s peace of mind. The prophecy of Jesus about the last days is certainly coming to pass:
Luke 21:26 – “Men’s hearts failing them for fear…”
Paul is encouraging the Philippians. He’s telling them that they don’t have to be terrified or afraid. Our adversaries can strike fear and terror in our hearts. Adversarial situations can bring fear. Not just in Philippians, but over and over in God’s Word, we are reminded that, as children of God, we don’t have to be afraid:
For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind. (2 Timothy 1:7)
So that we may boldly say, The Lord is my helper, and I will not fear what man shall do unto me. (Hebrews 13:6)
For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear… (Romans 8:15)
Fear is one of the most formidable weapons used by the enemy against us. Some of us may deal with a small measure of fear that works to keep us in our comfort zone. Others may be completely overcome with fear – to the point that fear controls every facet of life. But to some degree, the enemy’s fiery darts of fear have stuck us all.
Fear is bondage. Fear is humiliating. Fear is controlling. Fear is persistent. Fear is resilient. Fear is debilitating. Fear is tormenting.
I want to make a bold, clear statement that I believe wholeheartedly:
It is not the will of God for you to live your life in fear!
God wants to give you freedom from fear. He has come that you might have life and life more abundant – and that can only happen when the tyrant of fear is dethroned!
Imagine what your life would be like if you were truly and completely unafraid. Imagine what you would accomplish for God and in life if you were not bound or held back by fear. That’s how God wants you to life – free from fear!
I could write a book on the subject of fear. My family has dealt with it on personal level many times. But let me share a testimony of God’s grace and power: God set our family free from fear! The Power of God supernaturally delivered my wife from the chains of fear. I look forward to her sharing her testimony on this blog soon, but in the meantime, let me share a few practical steps to help overcome fear (and help stay victorious in the battle with fear):
- Remind Yourself that Your Life is in God’s Hands. We mustn’t forget that, as Christians, our lives are in God’s Hands – not the hands of the enemy, this world, or other people. Psalms says it well:
The Lord is on my side; I will not fear: What can man do unto me? (Psalm 118:6 )
- Remind Yourself of the Unconditional Love of God. The Bible says in 1 John 4:18: “Perfect love casts out fear.” When I understand that God truly loves me unconditionally and anything He does or allows stems from that love, it helps me not be afraid.
- Why Worry About Things that are not in Your Control? Most things in life are beyond our control, so what does worrying really accomplish? What benefit is there in worrying? Will worrying change my situation? In most cases, being fearful of things or worrying about situations does nothing but steal the joy the Lord has so freely given us.
- God’s Grace is Sufficient. When Paul was dealing with a difficult situation, God told him, “My grace is sufficient.” That meant that whatever Paul faced, God’s grace and strength would be present in a sufficient amount to deal with the situation. As a Christian, no matter what you face, you will always find the supply of God’s grace to be equal to the crises. You will always have enough grace no matter what you face.
- Stay in the Word and in Prayer. A prayer-less life is a breeding ground for fear. A day without the Word is a day when fear gains grounds. Nothing keeps fear at bay better than staying consistently in daily prayer and Bible study.
Thanks for joining me today in our study of Philippians! Before we go, let’s say a prayer together:
“Lord, You have not given me a spirit of fear. Fear does not come from You – it comes from the enemy. I ask You today to break the stronghold of fear off of my life and my family – in Jesus’ Name! I pray that You help me gird up the loins of my mind so that fearful thoughts cannot enter. Help me stay diligent in my prayer and devotional life. I ask these things in JESUS’ NAME!”