Fear is one of the greatest enemies of our faith and Satan uses it to trouble our souls. He often creates the worst possible scenarios in our minds to cause anxiety and panic. “What will I do if God should bring me into such and such affliction?” What if I lose my loved one or all my property and money?” What if…?”
However the LORD in his word reminds us again and again to resist fear. Charles Spurgeon observes “FEAR not” is a plant, which grows very plentifully in God’s garden. If you look through the lily beds of Scripture you will continually find, by the side of other flowers, the sweet, “Fear nots” peering out from doctrines and precepts even as violets look up from their hiding among places of green leaves.”
Yet despite Christ’s assurance and encouragement that we do not succumb to fear, this enemy of our faith continues to trouble us. Are there some things we need to do in order to win the battle? Reading through William Gurnall’s The Christian in Complete Armour one finds three great Scriptural truths that will help us overcome this foe.
First, we should remember that every event in our life is the product of God’s providence. The Westminster Shorter Catechism defines God’s providence as, “His most holy, wise, and powerful preserving and governing all his creatures, and all their actions,” (Q & A 11). No single Christian falls into poverty, sickness, persecution or any hardship apart from the wisdom and care of our Father (Matt. 10:29)
Secondly, God has promised to never forsake us.” I will never leave you nor forsake you,” (Hebrews 13:5). There is something special about this verse which is hardly noticed in the English translation. In the original Greek the verse contains five negatives for emphasis and literal translation would lead: ” I will not, not leave you; not, no never forsake you.” But since in English language two negatives would destroy each other only single negation is used. If God has such emphasized we must believe his promise without any reservations.
Lastly but not least, God in his wisdom conceals the comforts he intends to give us during our trials until we have actually experienced them. Gurnall’s own words say it better: “God his wisdom conceals the comforts he intends to give you at various stages of your life, so that he may encourage your heart to full dependence upon his promises now. Thus, to try the metal of Abraham’s faith, he let him go on, until his hand was stretched forth to slay Isaac, and then he came to his rescue” (Gen. 22).
So, be of good cheer and fear not but in everything through prayer in Christ’s name bring your fears to the throne of grace where we find strength and comfort.