It was during Sunday Vespers. I must have been in a fearful mood. I can’t remember why. But as sometimes, I was not even aware of my emotions. Suddenly a verse of Psalm 114 caught my eyes:
“Tremble, o earth, before the Lord.” Psalm 114:7
I immediately felt consoled. The fear was gone. How could this happen? As I was reflecting later, it came to me: Trembling before God seems to be much better than trembling before human beings, or situations, or anything else on earth. HE is the one and only before whom everyone trembles. Before whom everyone must tremble.
This knowledge did not increase my fear, but erased it. Fear of God is just natural because we know God is mightier than we are. However, what is better? Fearing God or fearing human beings? Being afraid of human beings, including ourselves, may be more justified because our goodness is limited and we can act evil. Not so can God. So, fearing God is the better choice. He is the loving and merciful God as Jesus has shown us. In other words, I felt consoled because I realized: Fear has a place. It has its place “before Him”, in the presence of God. It is taken care of in the presence of the loving and merciful God. I must not be afraid, because any fear is in good hands with Him. He is stronger and He is better.
Dear Lord, take all fear from me. Let me grow in the fear of you, who is my loving maker and caretaker. Prevent me from thinking and acting out of fear. Let the earth tremble and be shaken so that it may become a better and more peaceful place. I am not afraid of trembling before you.
2 thoughts on “Tremble before the Lord”
There comes a bible verse to my mind:
“And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: But rather fear HIM, who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” Matthews 10:28
In this verse I find great consolation. There is ‘somebody’ – Our God – who has power over both, good and evil, heaven and hell. To speak of fear of God I’d rather use the word ‘reverence’, in the sense of ‘deep respect’. In the German language the words ‘fear’ and ‘reverence’ have the same stem: Furcht (fear) and Ehr-Furcht (reverence). This shows that fear can be understood in two ways. Maybe we could transfer the meaning of how we fear God to our fear of human beings and to situations we are afraid of: With deep respect of the challenge we are faced, which gives us the opportunity to grow in confidence and trust and to grow closer to God in the end.
Hell has no power over God, but God has all power of hell. That is why I fear HIM with great, great reverence, with deep and holy respect. But I also fear to make detours and to go astray, because the line is thin and I have to decide every single where to go. Is it really HIS way for me? I fear to not knowing HIS will in my decisions. Fear has definitely a place in creation!
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oops! I wanted to write “….but God has all power OVER hell”.