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Why fear God?

Discussion in 'General Religious Debates' started by WeAreAllOne, Feb 19, 2006.

  1. Popeyesays

    Popeyesays Well-Known Member

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    Most people are looking at the King James Version of the Bible which was written during the British Restoration period - King James took the throne after the death of Cromwell, when Parliament decided to restore the Stuarts to the throne of England. This was in the seventeenth century and the English of then and the English of NOW have become quite different.

    "Fear" in the KJV is usually a referral to an archaicd definition which means "to stand in awe of". So when the KJV says "Fear God!" It really means "Stand in awe of God!" Fear in this instance is quite different than "be afraid of".
    "fear

    4 entries found for fear.
    To select an entry, click on it. fear[1,verb]fear[2,noun]Cape FearFear, Cape Main Entry: 1fear
    Pronunciation: 'fir
    Function: verb
    transitive senses
    1 archaic : [size=-1]FRIGHTEN[/size]
    2 archaic : to feel fear in (oneself)
    3 : to have a reverential awe of <fear God>
    4 : to be afraid of : expect with alarm
    intransitive senses : to be afraid or apprehensive



    "Genesis 20:11
    And Abraham said, Because I thought, Surely the fear of God is not in this place; and they will slay me for my wife's sake." KJV



    "Genesis 20:11
    And Abraham said, Because I thought, Surely there is no reverence or fear of God at all in this place, and they will slay me because of my wife" The Amplified Bible









    Regards,
    Scott
     
  2. dawny0826

    dawny0826 Mother Heathen

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    I read the NKJV as well as the NCV, NLT and NIV. They ALL read the same.
     
  3. Popeyesays

    Popeyesays Well-Known Member

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    Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary:
    Fear of the Lord the is in the Old Testament used as a designation of true piety (Prov. 1:7; Job 28:28; Ps. 19:9). It is a fear conjoined with love and hope, and is therefore not a slavish dread, but rather filial reverence. (Comp. Deut. 32:6; Hos. 11:1; Isa. 1:2; 63:16; 64:8.) God is called "the Fear of Isaac" (Gen. 31:42, 53), i.e., the God whom Isaac feared.

    A holy fear is enjoined also in the New Testament as a preventive of carelessness in religion, and as an incentive to penitence (Matt. 10:28; 2 Cor. 5:11; 7:1; Phil. 2:12; Eph. 5:21; Heb. 12:28, 29).
     
  4. dawny0826

    dawny0826 Mother Heathen

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    Is context truly taken into consideration?
     
  5. dawny0826

    dawny0826 Mother Heathen

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    Who do you think?
     
  6. Steve

    Steve Active Member

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    Lets not pretend that when the bible says Fear, it just means Awe or Wonder etc. While in many cases it does meant a profound awe, it also is certainly used for a fear like "being afraid of". This can be clearly seen many verses which show situations where people should fear God.
    If we deliberately keep on sinning after we have received the knowledge of the truth, no sacrifice for sins is left, but only a fearful expectation of judgment and of raging fire that will consume the enemies of God. Anyone who rejected the law of Moses died without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses. How much more severely do you think a man deserves to be punished who has trampled the Son of God under foot, who has treated as an unholy thing the blood of the covenant that sanctified him, and who has insulted the Spirit of grace? For we know him who said, "It is mine to avenge; I will repay," and again, "The Lord will judge his people." It is a dreadful thing to fall into the hands of the living God. Hebrews 10:26-31

    I tell you, my friends, do not be afraid of those who kill the body and after that can do no more. But I will show you whom you should fear: Fear him who, after the killing of the body, has power to throw you into hell. Yes, I tell you, fear him. Luke 12:4-5
    The simple fact that the Jesus teaches that there is going to be a real judgement and punishment and that Hell is real should be enough to understand why Fear of God is legitimate.
    This is one reason why the Jesus is called - Savior! Anyone who has sinned should fear a perfectly Holy and Just God, this same God also showed us his Love and Grace in Jesus Christ by making a way for us to be reconciled to him.
     
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  7. dawny0826

    dawny0826 Mother Heathen

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    :clap Excellent post and frubals to you.
     
  8. sojourner

    sojourner Annoyingly Progressive Since 2006

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    Somebody hasn't studied his linguistics...

    The simple fact that the Bible teaches us that God is love, that Jesus showed that God is to be approached as "daddy," and that Jesus has already brought us salvation should be enough to understand why "fear" of God means not to be afraid, but to stand in awe of God.
    This is one reason why Jesus is called -- Savior! Anyone who has sinned should be in awe of a perfectly holy and just God. This same God also showed us God's love and grace in Jesus Christ by making a way for us to be reconciled to God.

    Going on in Luke 12, after the "hellfire and damnation" verses you cite, Jesus says in vss. 6-7: "Are not five sparrows sold for two pennies? Yet not one of them is forgotten in God's sight. But even the hairs of your head are all counted. Do not be afraid; you are of more value than many sparrows."

    Is Jesus talking about God's petulent damnation, or is Jesus talking about God's extravagant love for us here? Yes, God could toss us into the fire, if God wanted to...but, instead, God chooses to not forget us. That's what we need to "stand in awe of."
     
  9. Steve

    Steve Active Member

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    Someone has to stop ignoring what the bible teaches...

    The fact is you have got to ignore huge parts of what Christ and the bible teach to claim that everyone will be saved and noone is going to hell.
    again -
    If we deliberately keep on sinning after we have received the knowledge of the truth, no sacrifice for sins is left, but only a fearful expectation of judgment and of raging fire that will consume the enemies of God. Anyone who rejected the law of Moses died without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses. How much more severely do you think a man deserves to be punished who has trampled the Son of God under foot, who has treated as an unholy thing the blood of the covenant that sanctified him, and who has insulted the Spirit of grace? For we know him who said, "It is mine to avenge; I will repay," and again, "The Lord will judge his people." It is a dreadful thing to fall into the hands of the living God. Hebrews 10:26-31

    God does loves us but he also gave us the ability to choose if we want to turn back to him or reject what he has done for us.
    I have given her time to repent of her immorality, but she is unwilling. So I will cast her on a bed of suffering, and I will make those who commit adultery with her suffer intensely, unless they repent of her ways. I will strike her children dead. Then all the churches will know that I am he who searches hearts and minds, and I will repay each of you according to your deeds. Revelation 22:21

    It is so clearly taught that not everyone is going to be saved, you simply impose what you want to be true rather then reading the Word and finding out what it really teaches.
    "Not everyone who says to me, 'Lord, Lord,' will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. Many will say to me on that day, 'Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name drive out demons and perform many miracles?' Then I will tell them plainly, 'I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!' Matthew 7:21-23

    "Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it. Mathew 7:13-14

    Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the name of God's one and only Son. John 3:18

    "Blessed are those who wash their robes, that they may have the right to the tree of life and may go through the gates into the city. Outside are the dogs, those who practice magic arts, the sexually immoral, the murderers, the idolaters and everyone who loves and practices falsehood. Revelation 22:14-15

    For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. John 3:16

    A third angel followed them and said in a loud voice: "If anyone worships the beast and his image and receives his mark on the forehead or on the hand, he, too, will drink of the wine of God's fury, which has been poured full strength into the cup of his wrath. He will be tormented with burning sulfur in the presence of the holy angels and of the Lamb. And the smoke of their torment rises for ever and ever. There is no rest day or night for those who worship the beast and his image, or for anyone who receives the mark of his name." Revelation 14:9-11
     
  10. sojourner

    sojourner Annoyingly Progressive Since 2006

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    "...What the Bible teaches." It teaches me that God's love is unconditional. It teaches me that God's will is going to be done. It teaches me that God desires relationship with us. It teaches me that Christ died once for all.

    Pericopes like the "Good Shepherd" pretty much sum it up. The good shepherd, when finding one sheep is lost, will leave the ninety and nine and look for the one who is lost until he finds it. (God seems to be very, very persistent here about never giving up on the lost...)

    What about Titus? "He saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy." Grace is God's commitment to love us regardless.

    And John, which you usurp as proof of God's "gatekeeping" activity: "God sent not his son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through him might be saved." Not just the righteous. Not just the Christians. The world.

    By reading your posts, I get the impression that God's grace, by your understanding, isn't an expression of God's love for us; it's fire insurance. "If I don't do something right (i.e., believe,) God will send me to hell. I'd better believe so that I can take advantage of the insurance policy I've been offered.

    What a mixed message! That thinking hinges salvation, not upon God's mercy, as Titus says, but upon one's belief -- something that one has to do, and do correctly. That's not grace!

    I have a very, very dear friend who's a confirmed atheist. We grew up together and, since college, have lived very, very far away from each other. I miss him terribly. I wish he were here now. What will happen when we all die? God's going to force me to spend eternity separated from my friend? This person is a good person -- one of the finest and most loving individuals I know. God's going to waste that love by consigning it to hell for eternity?

    My earthly life has been blessed by his presence. It has been sharply diminished by his absence. What am I to think of heaven? How can heaven be paradise, if it is diminished by my friend's eternal absence?

    If God gets what God wants (which is relationship with us), what makes us think that our little wills shall not finally be overshadowed by the unbounded love of God?

    If our willful resistant is stronger, how does that diminish the great loving act of the crucifixion?

    I cannot subscribe to passages that are obvious attempts by formative, fearful little communities to keep out the heretics and the dangerous. I cannot subscribe to a mixed message that says, "God loves us all, but is going to consign most of us to hell." How small that makes God! I cannot subscribe to a God who is love, yet chooses to circle the wagons to keep out the "undesireable." I choose to embrace the extravagant love that God has for each of God's children. I choose to believe that God's will shall be accomplished in God's time. I choose to give my brothers and sisters the benefit of the doubt. Regardless of what the Biblical writers say about condemnation.

    Because I do not fear love, I do not fear God.
     
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  11. Ormiston

    Ormiston Well-Known Member

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    Best post I've read today.
     
  12. Steve

    Steve Active Member

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    sojourner again you just completly ignor what Christ and the Bible teach, the verses i provided make it so clear and yet you just ignore them because you dont like what they say, it reminds me of
    For the time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. 2 Timothy 4:3

    True but it also explicitly teaches that salvation is conditional.

    True, but again God does not just overwrite our freewill he is the one who gave it to us - Christ died for us but we can still reject him and turn our back on him, again this is clearly shown in Hebrews and many other part of the Bible.
    If we deliberately keep on sinning after we have received the knowledge of the truth, no sacrifice for sins is left, but only a fearful expectation of judgment and of raging fire that will consume the enemies of God. Anyone who rejected the law of Moses died without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses. How much more severely do you think a man deserves to be punished who has trampled the Son of God under foot, who has treated as an unholy thing the blood of the covenant that sanctified him, and who has insulted the Spirit of grace? For we know him who said, "It is mine to avenge; I will repay," and again, "The Lord will judge his people." It is a dreadful thing to fall into the hands of the living God. Hebrews 10:26-31

    I have given her time to repent of her immorality, but she is unwilling. So I will cast her on a bed of suffering, and I will make those who commit adultery with her suffer intensely, unless they repent of her ways. I will strike her children dead. Then all the churches will know that I am he who searches hearts and minds, and I will repay each of you according to your deeds. Revelation 22:21
    Your right Jesus knocks on the door, he wants all to be saved, but again we have to accept him - he will not just impose himself on us.


    Do you pretend that there will not be a time when God says enough and brings his wrath on sinnful mankind? This is taugh consistantly throughout the bible also. You seem to refuse to see Christ as he is fully revealed in the Bible eg
    I saw heaven standing open and there before me was a white horse, whose rider is called Faithful and True. With justice he judges and makes war. His eyes are like blazing fire, and on his head are many crowns. He has a name written on him that no one knows but he himself. He is dressed in a robe dipped in blood, and his name is the Word of God. The armies of heaven were following him, riding on white horses and dressed in fine linen, white and clean. Out of his mouth comes a sharp sword with which to strike down the nations. "He will rule them with an iron scepter." He treads the winepress of the fury of the wrath of God Almighty. On his robe and on his thigh he has this name written:
    KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS. Revelations 19:11-16
    The world can be saved, but again Christ will not just force us.


    Gods Grace is Awsome, and is proof of Gods love for us - that he would save us from Hell which we deserve! I know Christ loves me because he was willing to forsake heaven for a time and come to earth to be humiliated and crucified to provide atonement for all those who would accept him as their savior.
    Besides what is your big deal with God punishing sin? would you expect him to let Rape, Murder, liars, thiefs just off the hook without the sin being punished? If you say yes then you dont understand the Cross, God upheld his Justice by still punishing our sin via Christ. The Cross is proof that God will punish sin and for those who have rejected Christ thats what they await again read Hebrews 10:26-31 its so clear.


    If he continues to reject Christ he will go to Hell, this person is not a good person either - he is just like the rest of us. Jesus said "there is none good but God", and Romans tells us that we have all fallen short of the glory of God. Instead of pretending your friend will be fine when he stands befor God, perhaps you should pray and call your friend with great concern for his salvation.

    It is Gods will that we have a will, this is why sin happens because God will not force us to be good, he has not made us robots - he has made a way for us to be reconciled to him but again we have to repent, that is turn back to him.

    It shows God respects our choices, and it shows that he will not be soft on sin, it is either by the Cross or by Hell that our sins are paid for, he gave us the first choice because he loves us so much.

    This is the most telling 2 sentences of your whole post, you believe you know better then the writers of the bible concerning Salvation and the nature of God - all you have done is created a God in your mind that you wish were true, its called idolatry - anything the apostles or Christ taught that you dont like you just disregard and instead say "i know better"

    The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction. Proverbs 1:7

    It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God. Hebrews 10:31

    "You shall not misuse the name of the LORD your God, for the LORD will not hold anyone guiltless who misuses his name. Exodus 20:7

    by the fear of the LORD one departs from evil. Proverbs 16:6
     
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  13. sojourner

    sojourner Annoyingly Progressive Since 2006

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    Again with the fear thing. I thought we'd settled this linguistics problem. I choose love and graciousness instead of fear and vengeance, and you're spanking me with the Exodus passage?
     
  14. Steve

    Steve Active Member

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    Thats my whole point! The Apostles certainly had a different theology then you do. You just agreed with me, and have shown that 2 Timothy 4:3 is indeed speaking of you. You reject the Apostles theology, their doctrine concerning salvation etc...


    Heres whats interesting, in your own posts you say that different parts of the bible are wrong or you just ignore explicit passages regarding the nature and condition of salvation - all to salvage your own doctrine because you dont want the other to be true.
    If you dont believe the bible and what it teaches then dont, plenty of other people on this forum simply say they dont believe it and thats their choice, but what your doing is trying to pretend that the bible teaches all will be saved and then just turning your back on anything Jesus or the apostles taught that contradicts your idea.


    Oh and when you quote me can you post your replies outside my quote, cheers.
     
  15. sojourner

    sojourner Annoyingly Progressive Since 2006

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    Do you not think that the apostles' view of God was far different than the patriarchs' view of God? Humanity's perspective and, hence, theology -- the way we talk about God -- changes and develops as we change and develop. It has nothing to do with "what we want to believe. It has everything to do with making a conscious choice to change what we have believed, because of how our understanding of scripture and theology has changed.

    Here's an interesting little nugget: In Romans, the statement is made that we are all "saved by faith in Christ." Yet, recent scholarship suggests that the Greek word in can just as easily be translated of -- we are "saved by the faith of Christ." Do you see how this changes our understanding of theology? In the first instance, salvation depends upon our faith -- who we believe in. In the second, salvation depends upon the measure of Christ's faith. Personally, I find that compelling enough to make me rethink what I have previously understood.

    You're assuming that I don't believe the Bible. I'm telling you that I do believe the Bible -- I hust happen to believe that it says something other than what you think it says. I choose to go beyond just what's in black-and-white on the page. I choose to consider what I read, study it thoroughly, and then contemplate what that means for me for how I believe. I don't reject what's written. I interpret what's written. Big difference.

    If you want to believe that a loving God punishes some of God's children and tortures them eternally, then go right ahead. Be saved from God's wrath. Let your salvation depend upon something you do and let it be rewards-based. That's your choice. That may be a valid viewpoint. But consider that other viewpoints may be valid too, and that there are other Christians in the world who grow weary of the judgmentalism and condemnation. I have wept for many people, just on this forum, who have turned away from what is a beautiful religion, who no longer even believe in God, because of such condemnation and fear. They see Christians as narrow-minded, hateful and hypocritical...Jesus said, "By their fruits will they be known..." Personally, I don't want to represent Jesus as narrow-minded, hateful and hypocritical. I don't want to turn people away from grace, just because they don't "measure up." I want to be gracious, as Christ was gracious to all. I want to spread love, rather than suppress "folly." I choose to be saved, not from God's wrath, but into God's arms.
     
  16. may

    may Well-Known Member

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    When people think of fear, they usually have in mind a morbid feeling that destroys hope and makes us discouraged. Obviously, Jehovah would not want us to feel that way about him Our heavenly Father wants us to come to him just as a child would come to his father, confident of his father’s love and yet at the same time fearing to displease him. Such fear will help us remain obedient to our heavenly Father when tempted to do wrong. This is a proper "godly fear" that Christians must have.—Hebrews 5:7; 11:7. not a morbid fear , but not wanting to do wrong , a fear of displeasing our God

    Fear the true God and keep his commandments. For this is the whole obligation of man."—ECCLESIASTES 12:13.

     
  17. Steve

    Steve Active Member

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    No - what you do is come to the bible with what you want to be true, with what you want it to say, then when it dosnt you either ignore it, twist it, or accuse the authors of editing Jesus' words - just as you have done in other threads on this forum.
    Instead of learning about God from the bible and learning your theology from the bible, you bring your god and theology to the Bible and twist it etc until you think it says what you want it to.
    For the time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. 2 timothy 4:3

     
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