Overcoming - Part 4
Journey Into Overcoming - Part 4
Journey Into Overcoming - Part 4
When You're Afraid
I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.”
Confession of Faith
I am not moved by what I see or by what I feel. I am moved by what I believe. I believe the WORD of God! The victory is mine! I have it now! I can see it through the eyes of my faith!
Last week we looked at how to get rid of Guilt:
Getting rid of our guilt requires we
1. Accept God's love, 2. Assume responsibility, 3. Admit our sin is against God, 4.Ask God for cleansing, 5. Appeal to God for renewal, and
6. Avoid future sin.
Today I want to look at what the bible says about overcoming fear or addressing issues when you are afraid
Fear is part of our lives. The Greek word used in the New testament for "fear" is phobos, from which we get our word "phobia," a term we use to describe all kinds of fear.
"Hydrophobia" is the fear of water; "tachophobia" is the fear of speed; and "claustrophobia" is the fear of tight places.
There are more than 1,000 different kinds of human fears. All of us, even the best of Christians, have fears.
I was with you in weakness, in fear, and in much trembling.
Fear is one of Satan's most effective weapons to keep us from fulfilling God's purpose.
That's why God says things like be not afraid or fear not more than 100 times in the Bible.
I want to look at two things:
1. how fear affects us
2. how to alleviate fear.
How Fear Affects Us
A great example of the effects of fear is the reaction of the Israelites when trapped by Pharaoh during the Exodus. When the Israelites leave Egypt God tells Moses to travel in circles.
Then the Lord gave these instructions to Moses: “Order the Israelites to turn back and camp by Pi-hahiroth between Migdol and the sea. Camp there along the shore, across from Baal-zephon. Then Pharaoh will think, ‘The Israelites are confused. They are trapped in the wilderness!’
This means the Lord leads them into a cul-de-sac. The Israelites are closed in by mountains on the north and south and the Red Sea on the east. Then, the Israelites look up and see Pharaoh with his army approaching them from the west.
And when Pharaoh drew near, the children of Israel lifted their eyes, and behold, the Egyptians marched after them. So they were very afraid, and the children of Israel cried out to the Lord.
Here’s whats’s happening in this passage
1. Fear cripples our faith.
Fear weakens our faith in a hurry. The Israelites have already witnessed the Ten Plagues in Egypt. Then, as they leave Egypt, the Lord continuously leads them with a miraculous cloud by day and a pillar of fire by night
The Lord went ahead of them. He guided them during the day with a pillar of cloud, and he provided light at night with a pillar of fire. This allowed them to travel by day or by night. And the Lord did not remove the pillar of cloud or pillar of fire from its place in front of the people.
God always has a continuous, visible presence among His people
The Lord spread a cloud above them as a covering and gave them a great fire to light the darkness.
This means they "have it made in the shade" as they walk through the desert. But, fear cripples their faith.
Then they began to question why Moses brought them out of Egypt and even accuse him of bringing them into the desert to die
and they said to Moses, “Why did you bring us out here to die in the wilderness? Weren’t there enough graves for us in Egypt? What have you done to us? Why did you make us leave Egypt?
2. Fear changes our focus.
Moses is leading the Israelites to freedom and blessings in the Promised Land. They had been slaves in Egypt for 400 years. As slaves they were treated with cruelty and forced to make bricks and do all kinds of back-breaking work in the fields
So the Egyptians worked the people of Israel without mercy. They made their lives bitter, forcing them to mix mortar and make bricks and do all the work in the fields. They were ruthless in all their demands.
However, fear has made them change their focus.
Didn’t we tell you this would happen while we were still in Egypt? We said, ‘Leave us alone! Let us be slaves to the Egyptians. It’s better to be a slave in Egypt than a corpse in the wilderness!’ ”
But That isn't the truth true. When Moses first told the Israelites the Lord had sent him to lead them to the Promised Land, they bowed their heads and worshipped the Lord
So the people believed; and when they heard that the Lord had visited the children of Israel and that He had looked on their affliction, then they bowed their heads and worshiped.
Fear causes us to resist change and want to live in the past. The Israelites want to go back to the "good ole days."
F-alse E-vidence A-ppearing R-eal
Listen! God has a "Promised Land" for your life. He has a purpose for your life, but fear changes your focus and causes you to miss God's purpose for your life.
What do you fear right now? Losing your job, aging, declining health, rejection, not being able to pay your bills? Fear is False Evidence Appearing Real.
We are born with only two fears: the fear of falling and the fear of loud noises.
All other fears are learned, so they can be unlearned. Don't be like the man with one talent and let fear change your focus.
And I was afraid, and went and hid your talent in the ground. Look, there you have what is yours.’
Because of fear, many Christians "hide" their talents and gifts "in the ground." Fear affects us by crippling our faith and changing our focus
How To Alleviate Fear
1. Remember God's power. To calm their fears, Moses tells the Israelites the Lord shall fight for them
The Lord himself will fight for you. Just stay calm.”
Then, the Lord tells Moses to lead the Israelites to the Red Sea and raise his rod over the sea, which will divide so the Israelites can cross on dry land
And the Lord said to Moses, “Why do you cry to Me? Tell the children of Israel to go forward. But lift up your rod, and stretch out your hand over the sea and divide it. And the children of Israel shall go on dry ground through the midst of the sea.
As foolish as it seems, Moses does as the Lord commands, stretching his hand over the sea, and that night the Lord drives back the water by a strong east wind, making the sea dry land. Then, the Israelites cross the sea upon the dry ground: and the waters were a wall on both sides of them
Then Moses stretched out his hand over the sea; and the Lord caused the sea to go back by a strong east wind all that night, and made the sea into dry land, and the waters were divided. So the children of Israel went into the midst of the sea on the dry ground, and the waters were a wall to them on their right hand and on their left.
. The Egyptians pursue them with horses and chariots, but God makes their chariot wheels come off, creating confusion
He twisted their chariot wheels, making their chariots difficult to drive. “Let’s get out of here—away from these Israelites!” the Egyptians shouted. “The Lord is fighting for them against Egypt!”
Then the Lord said to Moses, “Stretch out your hand over the sea, that the waters may come back upon the Egyptians, on their chariots, and on their horsemen.”
Look at this:
For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.
God gives us 3 things to alleviate our fears:
1. God supplies us with His power.
Without God's power we will constantly be victimized by fear.
In 1 Samuel 17 we find the story of Goliath, a godless, nine-foot-tall giant who is challenging the Israelites to a fight.
As soon as the Israelite army saw him, they began to run away in fright.
Here is how David handled the situation - moving without fear
“Come over here, and I’ll give your flesh to the birds and wild animals!” Goliath yelled. David replied to the Philistine, “You come to me with sword, spear, and javelin, but I come to you in the name of the Lord of Heaven’s Armies—the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied.
Today the Lord will conquer you, and I will kill you and cut off your head. And then I will give the dead bodies of your men to the birds and wild animals, and the whole world will know that there is a God in Israel! And everyone assembled here will know that the Lord rescues his people, but not with sword and spear. This is the Lord’s battle, and he will give you to us!” As Goliath moved closer to attack, David quickly ran out to meet him. Reaching into his shepherd’s bag and taking out a stone, he hurled it with his sling and hit the Philistine in the forehead. The stone sank in, and Goliath stumbled and fell face down on the ground. So David triumphed over the Philistine with only a sling and a stone, for he had no sword. Then David ran over and pulled Goliath’s sword from its sheath. David used it to kill him and cut off his head. When the Philistines saw that their champion was dead, they turned and ran.
You see, God does not give us the spirit of fear; He supplies us with the spirit of power and...
2. God supplies us with assurance of His love.
God's love helps us overcome our fears. The Bible tells us there is no fear in love.
There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love.
Fear is the result of our lack of faith in God's love for us.
As Christians we should never fear the future because of God's power and love for us. We can alleviate any fear if we focus on God's love for us. Then, we can love others by allowing His love to flow through us
And this hope will not lead to disappointment. For we know how dearly God loves us, because he has given us the Holy Spirit to fill our hearts with his love.
When we are fearful, we need to remember what the bible says in Romans 8:39
No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.
God supplies us with His power, His love, and...
3. God supplies us with a sound mind.
This literally means God gives us self-discipline or self-control. We don't get hysterical or become paralyzed by fear when serious problems come. The Holy Spirit enables us to keep cool heads when "giant" fears come.
To know how to alleviate fear, we must remember God's power and... Remember God's promises.
The Lord is my light and my salvation; Whom shall I fear? The Lord is the strength of my life; Of whom shall I be afraid?
Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand.
Fearing people is a dangerous trap, but trusting the Lord means safety.
Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.
God shows us how fear affects us But he gives us direction on how to alleviate fear.
Read the book of Ephesians