Sermon Notes

Fear and Awe

Fearing God part 2


What does the Greek word, phobos mean?

How does it relate to fearing God?

The Paradox of phobos

  • Throughout the Scriptures we are told to fear God.

“Serve the Lord with fear, and celebrate his rule with trembling.”Psalm 2:11

“The fear of the Lord” is the beginning of knowledge.” Proverbs 1:7

“Since you call on a Father who judges each person’s work impartially, live out your time as foreigners here in reverent fear.” I Peter 1: 17

“Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed—not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence—continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose.” Phillipians 2: 12,13

“God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them… There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.”  I John 4:16-18

Two Extreme views about phobos

  1. People who live in terror of God

– fear may curb behavior, but it does not transform a person’s life.

– for a child of God, phobos does NOT mean terror.

  1. People for whom fearing God means NOTHING.

– we have desecrated God (to undo what is sacred)

– we treat God as common (ie crosses)

The Biblical view of phobos

  • The Transcendent God: the Creator of the Universe (Psalm 19:1)
  • The Incarnation: Jesus

There is only one reasonable response to what God did through Creation and through the death of Jesus on the Cross:  WORSHIP

The beauty of fearing God is holding together…

  • Being filled with awe and wonder at the grandeur and majesty of God.
  • Being in awe of the smallness of a God who becomes one of us.

Fearing God is bringing His majesty and His tenderness together.

  • It is the realization of how small we are, and yet at the same time how significant we are.
  • Fearing God is knowing God is your lover and yet your LORD.