God's Antidote to Fear

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God's Antidote to Fear
Text: 1 John 4:17-18
Occasion: General
Audience: General
Theological Tradition: General
Topic: Fear, Love
Author: Edwin Weaver


Direction

Fear does not have a hold on us when we look to Christ and love each other.

How to Get There

  • People try to use fear to convince us to do what they want, overtly and secretly.
  • Some fears are warranted and some are unwarranted, irrational. But we're all afraid from time to time.
  • This letter was written by someone who has seen more things to fear than we will hopefully ever experience.
  • Yet John says perfect love casts out fear. God does not want us to live in fear, but to life in love and faith.
  • So how do you beat fear?
    • Name what we are afraid of, the more we avoid our fears the bigger they grow.
    • Develop courage. Live boldly, and with a readiness to die.
    • But primarily, fear is mastered through perfect love.
  • When we focus on love incarnate, Jesus, all else fades into the background. When our lives are full of Christ there is no room for fear.
  • Our focus needs to be on Jesus, our love. Fear is at the roots usually about death and abandonment.
  • But we don't have punishment ahead of us, we have life. Death has no hold over us, and we are never alone with Jesus.
  • 2 Corinthians 4:16-18 says it well. Our fears are based on momentary troubles, but what we don't see, those are the greater things, the eternal things.
  • Fear is only insurmountable when we are alone. We are never alone, and our future is decided. We have our Lord, and we have our community of believers to remind us of all of this when we stumble.

Things to Watch For

This book is written by John the elder, the oldest living disciple and at this point in time the last disciple. He has been boiled alive and lived, he has seen friends die and faces perrsecution himself right as he wrote this.

Fear can often be taken as being the utter terror of a horror movie, but that isn't all this passage is about. Little fears, the ones in the back of our minds, are just as insidious. Examples can help people realize where they are afraid.

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