Several times in the Bible we are told that:
“The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom” Psalm 111:10
And in Ecclesiastes the writer concludes that we should:
“Fear God and keep His commandments, for this is man’s all.” Ecclesiastes 12:13
So fear of the Lord is seen as very important – but it can be difficult to know the meaning of it.
I have started reading a wonderful commentary on Proverbs by Charles Bridges. Spurgeon describes it as, “The best work on Proverbs” and even though I’m only a few pages in, I love it.
He writes a great definition of the fear of the Lord:
‘It is that affectionate reverence, by which the child of God bends himself humbly and carefully to His Father’s law. His wrath is so bitter, and His love so sweet; that hence springs an earnest desire to please Him, and – because of the danger of coming short from his own weakness and temptations – a holy watchfulness and fear, “that he might not sin against Him.” This enters into every exercise of the mind, every object of life.’
I love how he gives two motives to a desire to please God – just as a child often will want to please his parents, partly from not wanting to be disciplined, but then also because their parents love them and they want to show their love back.
I think the fear of God is not understood that much, and we often miss the reverence for a holy and majestic God. We need to have that awe and reverence for God, while also realising His boundless love and mercy for us, making us want to live a life that pleases Him.
Linking up to Faith Filled Fridays