“Let the godly sing for joy to the Lord; it is fitting for the pure to praise him. Praise the Lord with melodies on the lyre; make music for him on the ten-stringed harp. Sing a new song of praise to him; play skillfully on the harp, and sing with joy. For the word of the Lord holds true, and we can trust everything he does. He loves whatever is just and good; the unfailing love of the Lord fills the earth. The Lord merely spoke, and the heavens were created. He breathed the word, and all the stars were born. He assigned the sea its boundaries and locked the oceans in vast reservoirs. Let the whole world fear the Lord, and let everyone stand in awe of him. For when he spoke, the world began! It appeared at his command. The Lord frustrates the plans of the nations and thwarts all their schemes. But the Lord’s plans stand firm forever; his intentions can never be shaken. What joy for the nation whose God is the Lord, whose people he has chosen as his inheritance. The Lord looks down from heaven and sees the whole human race. From his throne he observes all who live on the earth. He made their hearts, so he understands everything they do. The best-equipped army cannot save a king, nor is great strength enough to save a warrior. Don’t count on your warhorse to give you victory— for all its strength, it cannot save you. But the Lord watches over those who fear him, those who rely on his unfailing love. He rescues them from death and keeps them alive in times of famine. We put our hope in the Lord. He is our help and our shield. In him our hearts rejoice, for we trust in his holy name. Let your unfailing love surround us, Lord, for our hope is in you alone.” Psalms 33:1-22 NLT
In this passage it talks about the concept of fearing the Lord but also putting our hope, trust, and relying on God’s love. Which in our society are seen as diametrically opposed. The Bible says “Such love has no fear, because perfect love expels all fear. If we are afraid, it is for fear of punishment, and this shows that we have not fully experienced his perfect love.” 1 John 4:18 NLT. When looking at this passage the concepts can become confusing when in reality it is really simple. We are called to have reverence or be in awe. Reverence is having deep respect for someone or something. Awe is a feeling of reverential respect mixed with fear or wonder. It isn’t meant to be an anxiety inducing fear or crippling but instead an amazement at the tiny bit of God we can understand. We are called not to live in fear of the world or of punishment. But instead be bold and courageous as we know who our God is. He is the King of King and the Lord of Lord’s. See God as he is, treat him as we should, and praise him how we can. The fear named above is putting God in his proper place in the relationship and view him correctly, not run from his presence.
This post first appeared on my personal website.