What I absolutely love about studying and preaching the Bible is that God gives me solutions to my sinful condition. For example, I am a planner and organizer I love having all my “ducks in a row” and know where I’m going. So it is very easy, even natural, for me to live by sight. But God says in 2 Corinthians 5:7 that He wants me to live by faith! So that is a sinful problem. I feel more comfortable living by sight than by faith, because that means I’m in control and have say in my destiny. However, because God loves me and knows all about my fallen condition He gives me the solution in Hebrews 11 about living by faith and how to do it. Do you see what I mean? For every area of sin that you and I have, God has a biblical solution that we must apply into our daily living.
With that being said, in my last post, Obeying the Fear of Man, I listed several items that take place when you are more concerned about what other people think about you rather than what God thinks. This is sin and greatly hinders your spiritual influence to the people around you. So what is God’s solution to having victory over the fear of man (commonly known as peer pressure)?
Turn back to Proverbs 29:25. It states, “…but whoso putteth his trust in the Lord shall be safe.” What does that mean?
In order to biblically overcome the fear of man you must focus on placing your trust in the Lord. The root of this sin is a lack of complete dependence (trust) in God alone. Because you are designed to place your trust into something or someone, by default you will seek to please man, hence why you obey the fear of man (peer pressure) at school, work, church, etc. How do I know that?
In Hebrew poetry a statement that is made in the first line is then repeated, expanded, or contrasted in the second line. Also known as Hebrew parallelisms. In this verse we have an antithetical parallelism, which simply means the two statements contrast each other. Therefore, this means a fearful person that is consumed with what others think does not trust God. Here is the biblical solution…
1) Biblically overcoming the fear of man is possible! God wants and longs for you to place your trust in Him by (1) knowing that ungodly fear does not come from Him (2 Timothy 1:7). Being consumed with what other people think is not something God wants you to be concerned about. This is ungodly fear. (2) Acknowledge that only God can provide true security (Ephesians 1:6). The word “safe” means to be set on high, exalted, in a safe place, to be unreachable by others.
The summer of 2008 my wife and I vacationed in the Philadelphia area and we had the wonderful opportunity to visit Independence Hall and the Liberty Bell for the very first time. When we approached the Liberty Bell I noticed the it was carefully roped off, under careful watch by surveillance cameras, and well-protected by security guards. The bell was set on high and truly safe. This the picture God wants you to understand when you place your trust in Him! Security in the Lord removes the intimidation of man. As a Christian you are accepted in God’s eyes (Ephesians 1:6), why do you want or need man’s approval?
Finally, (3) focus on pleasing God in every area of your life instead of pleasing your peers. When your trust is in the Lord you are now FREE from the bondage of acceptance! You are now FREE from the fear of man! God now has your full attention on Him (Psalm 118:8).
2) Biblically overcoming the fear of man is promising! Notice how this verse is stated, “…but whoso [whoever, anyone, any Christian can do this! You qualify!] putteth [places; puts] his trust [confidence] in the Lord shall [will] be safe [secure; set on high].” Wow! This is a timeless and eternal promise directly out of Scripture.
You can biblically overcome the fear of man by placing your complete dependence in the Lord. One exercise I encourage you to perform is to look up several verses on trust and apply them. I will get you started…Proverbs 3:5-6; Psalm 9:10; Psalm 34:8. Let me know what you find and learn!