"PERFECT LOVE CASTS OUT FEAR"
Meditation Moments 129:
"Open my eyes that I may see
Glimpses of truth Thou hast for me.
Open my ears that I may hear
Voice of truth Thou sendest near.
Open my mouth and let me bare
Gladly the warm truth everywhere.
Open my eyes, illumine me, Spirit Divine.
In 2 Kings, Chapter 6, there's that wonderful story where there was camped about the city of Dothan the army of the king of Syria, the crowd was so great, and Elisha was there in the city with his servant.
The servant couldn't see anything but the enemy's men, horses and chariots, but Elisha saw that God was with them. "And when the servant of the man of God was risen early, and gone forth, behold, an host compassed the city both with horses and chariots. And his servant said unto him, 'Alas, my master! How shall we do?' And he answered, 'Fear not: for they that be with us are more than they that be with them.'
"And Elisha prayed, and said, 'Lord, I pray Thee, open his eyes, that he may see.' And the Lord opened the eyes of the young man; and he saw: and, behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire round about Elisha." -- 2 Kings 6:15-17.
Isn't it wonderful when the eyes are opened that see God working, the eyes are opened to see that the Lord is with us! When we get through all the fear, mistrust and doubts, and see the face of the Lord! We know that greater is the Power that is with us, than all the enemies of fear and distrust that are against us. "Greater is He that is in you, than he that is in the World!" -- 1Jn.4:4b.
We're living in a terrible day of fear! We are afraid what Russia will do with its military and scientific superiority. We're afraid of economic crash and depression. We're afraid of the tensions in some remote sects of the World, that they'll unite in a global war.
White men fear the rising tide of color, and Asiatics are afraid of Western domination. Americans are afraid of Communism (for which I don't blame them at all -- if you were in Miami, like I was in the last few months, you'd understand that). Russians are afraid of America, and everybody's afraid of nuclear destruction.
In the meantime, we all have our individual fears, our own little set of private fears. Perhaps yours are not like someone else's, but nevertheless, fear is so dominant. Some people have more than others, but everybody knows what it's like to be afraid.
Over one hundred year ago, a Methodist minister named William Taylor arrived in San Francisco. He was caught up in the midst of the gold rush, at the time that city was a bustling center of paganism. There was no church in which William Taylor could preach, and no congregation waiting to hear him. But there were so many people in the city and such a great need, so he stood on a barrel on a busy corner one Sunday morning and shouted, "I have good news!"
###The people asked, "What's the good news?"
###"I have good news for you this morning!" he replied, and brought them the Good News of the Gospel.
Well, I have good news for you, too, that Jesus Christ came into the World to release us from our fears. One of the very first messages that the Angel brought was, "Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy." -- Luke 2:10. That's the formula that the Lord gave.
He told His disciples that they were to be unafraid, "Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid." -- Jn.14:27b. And then He added, "This is My commandment, that ye love one another as I have loved you." -- Jn.15:12. There is a secret to getting rid of fear.
Love is a greater emotion than fear, and it can cast out fear. God's Word says so! "Perfect love casts casteth out fear." -- 1Jn.4:18a. Jesus said to "fear not, for it is your Father's good pleasure to give you the Kingdom." -- Lk.12:32. So it's not necessary to have any fears whatsoever if we trust in God Who promises to see us through.
They used to say of the Puritans, that they feared God, so they feared nothing else! We, however, have lost our fear of God and are afraid of everything, it seems! He who has a God Whose laws he respects and Whose Will he seeks to do, has such a mighty sense of security! And it's only as you're in close touch with God, and have perfect love for Jesus, that all the fear is cast out!
Fear is faithlessness. A man who is afraid believes he has no protection, no security. He's aware of no strength beyond his own, so when he's confronted with a threat that appears greater than he can handle with his own resources, he has no recourse but fear. The heart doesn't have room to embrace both fear and trust at the same time. No heart can do that. When one goes in, the other goes out!
Years ago, Dr. Thomas Chalmers, a famous Scottish preacher, was riding in the seat beside a stage coach driver when he noticed one of the horses became a little nervous. The stage coach driver flicked his leg with the whip and the horse settled down. Dr. Chalmers asked, "Why did you do that?" and the driver answered, "Well, yonder's a white stone, and every time we passes it, that there horse shies. So I touch him with the whip to divert his attention." That set Dr. Chalmers to thinking, and he went home and wrote that wonderful book that became so World famous, "The Exquisite Power of a New Affection."
When you have the New Affection of the Jesus Christ, and that wonderful Love comes into your heart for Him, you live in His Word and love it, and your love for Him personally grows so great. There's nothing more stimulating, more real that swings into the center of our heart's tensions than the Love of God, and it can drive out all other concerns and fears.
I'm not belittling fear and pretending that it's a simple thing, but trust in God and don't be afraid. It's not simple, but perfect love will case out fear. I'm not willing to settle for any easy faith and some superficial answers for this. You have to live in the Word of God, you have to claim the promises, you have to lay hold of those promises and practice the presence of God continually!
Perfect love for Jesus Christ will leave no room for fear, because you're not trusting in your own strength, you're not trusting in your own protection, you're not trusting anything of the natural, the things that you can lay hold of in the material -- the human and the natural.
You're trusting the Power beyond your own! -- And therefore you have the perfect love that casts out all fear. There are so many wonderful verses along this line! So many in God's Word speak of this deliverance from fear, this overcoming Power of Jesus, this love of God and love of His Word, this wonderful love for Jesus. Go to Him, press through everything until you see His face!
He says, "See My face." Seek His face and tell Him of your love for Him, and He will reveal His Love to you, and fear will be gone! God bless you.
I was raised in the Hegewisch neighborhood on the southeast side of Chicago, Illinois, served in the USAF from 1970 to 1974, and became a full-time missionary for Christ living 40 years in Japan, 3.5 years in Russia, and a few months in other countries such as Finland, Poland, Estonia, Latvia, South Korea, Taiwan and mainland China where I also served the King of Kings, Jesus, as an Ambassador for His Kingdom.
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