Sermon Notes

Fear and Approval

I Samuel 15 / Proverbs 29:25

Key Verse:

“The fear of man brings a snare. But whoever trusts in the Lord will be kept safe”

  • Proverbs 29:25
  • The fear of man is one of the great inhibitors of fearing God
  • Gaining approval from someone is not in itself wrong or unhealthy. It is when the fear of God intersects with fearing the approval or opinions of others…how do you respond?

Why the need for approval (fearing people’s opinion) is so strong

  1. Group Conformity

– Seeking approval is not in itself wrong or unhealthy.

– It’s when the approval or opinions of other conflict with what God says is

true or right, how do you respond?

I was afraid of the men and so I gave in to them.

  • King Saul, I Samuel 15:24


Invite the Holy Spirit to peel back the layers.  Think about something God has told you to do.  But it involves a cross-current.

I was afraid of ____________, so I gave in (to them)

  1. It acts as a snare (lure, bait)

– It can be used to manipulate and control you

The Antidote to fearing man

  1. See it for what it is. (John 5: 41-44)

– You fear the one whose approval you seek the most.

  1. Trust in the One who alone can keep you safe. (Ps. 118:6-9)

– Trust means to be persuaded about something to the extent that you

rely on it.

– “safe” referred to a fortress with high walls.

“Stop trusting in mere humans, who have but a breath in their nostrils. Why hold them in esteem?” Isaiah 2:22

  1. Cultivate Courageous fear

– which comes out of deep conviction. (Daniel)