The Fear of God and Church Beauty

Here is Christ’s tenderness and compassion towards His people in their guilt from sin.

 John is speaking of what makes a true church. What makes a church happy and humble and sweetly composed before God? He answers How do you get the junk out of a church; how God purifies His church; How God humbles His church so that they are not puffed up; How He keeps His church from legalism; How the church roots out sin? How the Lord keeps His church keep from being fake? 

This passage displays a beautiful picture of church life. It is a life of, confession, forgiveness and cleansing. It’s center of this beautiful life is relationship with the Advocate, Jesus Christ the righteous. His sacrifice appeased the wrath of God (propitiation). It is a fellowship of truth tellers instead of liars. There is no deception. It is a place of glorifying the Father instead of making Him a liar.

He does all these things through confession of sin:  “If we confess our sins He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness,”  1 John 1:9.

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Fear of God Devotional: When a Church Fears God

What does it look like when a church fears God?

Jason Dohm explains in this video that when a church fears the Lord, there is a great carefulness to conduct the life of a church according to what God has said in His Word. Instead of being governed by their own thoughts or desires, a church that fears God desires to submit to the commands of Scripture.

On the other hand, if a church doesn’t want to be regulated by Scripture, that most likely indicates a loss of the fear of God. When a church ceases to fear God, they are free to ignore God. People can do what they believe is wise, rather than what God has said we ought to devote ourselves to. If we truly believed that God is the God of the Bible, we would act according to His Word.

Psalm 86:11 (NKJV) – “Teach me Your way, O Lord; I will walk in Your truth; unite my heart to fear Your name.”

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Fear of God Devotional: The Fear of The Lord

How does the fear of God manifest itself in the life of both an unbeliever and believer?

Carlton McLeod explains that the fear of the Lord is manifested in the life of a believer by the love, reverence, awe, and passion that prompt the believer to obey God. It is the state of mental and emotional sanctification where the believer sees God as holy, and a reverent trembling results. It is the necessary characteristic of Christian discipleship where total obedience to the commands of Christ is seen as a loving response to a loving God.

It is a behavior-restraining element even in the hearts of those individuals who do not follow Christ. It is a cultural acknowledgment in the hearts of man regarding the laws of God. It is a necessary component to a godly society and it is an understanding that God will one day judge the earth and all who ever lived.

Romans 14:11 (NKJV) – “For it is written: ‘As I live, says the Lord, every knee shall bow to Me, and every tongue shall confess to God.”

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Fear of God Devotional: The Purpose of Chastisement

What is the purpose of chastisement?

Clarence Simmons explains in this video that the purpose of God’s chastisement can be found in Hebrews chapter 12. That purpose is to conform us more to the likeness of God and to the will of God, that we may be holy. This involves a cutting off of all things that are not Christ-like.

While the chastisement is certainly not pleasant, we must realize that God disciplines us so that we can be fruitful and be holy. He is making us more like His Son. God chastens us when we rebel and sin against Him instead of letting us go astray and continue down a path that leads to destruction. How merciful and good He is!

Hebrews 12:5-6 (NKJV) – “My son, do not despise the chastening of the Lord, nor be discouraged when you are rebuked by Him; for whom the Lord loves He chastens, and scourges every son whom He receives.”

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Fear of God Devotional: The Essence of the Fear of God

Do you struggle with fearing man more than you fear God?

Craig Houston points us to Proverbs 3:5-6: “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths.”

He explains in this video that this truth should apply throughout all of life. In all of our ways, we are to fear God. Fear Him who can destroy both body and soul in hell. While we are to fear God, we are not to fear man or what man can do to us. Rather, we are to fear the One who holds life and breath. The worst that man can do is kill the body. The worst that God can do is to send sinful men to hell. God is worthy of being feared, trusted, and obeyed.

Matthew 10:28 (NKJV) – “And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. But rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.”

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Chapel Library – A Treasure Trove of Biblical Wisdom

Don’t forget to visit Chapel Library often. They have some of the most significant books and pamphlets available today – a rich treasure trove. You can download hundreds of titles and even take courses that will grow your faith.

For example… If you are called to be a pastor, check this series by Al Martin. This is a series that has helped many to see what faithfulness in pastoral ministry looks like.

Unit 1: Essential Elements of a Biblical Call

Unit 2: Essential Elements of Effective Pastoral Ministry:In the Man

Unit 3: Essential Elements of Effective Pastoral Ministry:In the Message (Part 1)

Unit 4: Essential Elements of Effective Pastoral Ministry:In the Message (Part 2)

Unit 5: Essential Elements of Effective Pastoral Ministry:In the Act of Preaching

Unit 6: Essential Elements of Effective Pastoral Oversight

Unit 7: Essential Elements of Effective Pastoral Oversight

Unit 8: Essential Elements of Effective Pastoral Oversight 

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Fear of God Devotional: Identifying the Fear of God in the Charismatic and Prosperity Gospel Movements

What are the effects of straying from the clear commands of Scripture?

Mala Chindongo explains that it is critically important for us to develop the fear of God in our hearts. There has to be a devotion to what God has revealed about Himself in His Word. In short, there ought to be a clear devotion to the Word of God.

This devotion to reading and studying Scripture cultivates a fear of God. We glimpse His love and what He has done for us through Jesus Christ. We also see His wrath, His warnings, and examples of God pouring out His wrath upon the disobedient.

Unfortunately, there is little devotion to God’s Word within the charismatic and prosperity gospel movement today. And if there is no devotion to God’s Word, it should not surprise us that there will not be a fear of God and obedience to the commands of Scripture.

Matthew 4:4 (NKJV) – “But He answered and said, ‘It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.’”

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God is Light

It is striking how man cannot stop trying to create more light, always improving light in houses, buildings, stadiums and other outdoor places covered in the darkness of night. Man cannot seem to lose his fascination with light.  We are always creating light that casts farther and is more penetrating and pleasing by degrees. In 1 John 1:5-7, John brings us into the world of light and darkness. He makes it very plain that to walk in darkness is to be deprived of everything beautiful and good. When you walk in darkness, it is a darkness that can be felt. You are separated from the light, and life and love of God. And, you cannot have the fullness of loving fellowship with God and with His people in your journey through this world. But, what does it mean to walk in the light and in darkness? John answers this question.

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Fear of God Devotional: What is the Meaning of God’s Temporal Judgments in the World?

Have you considered just how merciful God is to us?

Jason Dohm explains in this video that Lot’s wife is an example of God’s impending judgment. This account is given to us so that we can glimpse a little foretaste of what is to come.

Jason directs our attention to Romans 9. In that chapter, Paul says, “Unless the Lord of Sabaoth had left us a seed, we would have become like Sodom, and we would have been made like Gomorrah..” What were Sodom and Gomorrah like? Total annihilation with no survivors. Utter desolation.

What Paul is saying is that unless God was merciful and saved some, all would have been destroyed. All deserved to be destroyed. But, God is merciful. He has left a remnant. Sodom and Gomorrah stand as a picture for what is coming for those who do not repent.

Isaiah 1:9 (NKJV) – “Unless the Lord of hosts had left to us a very small remnant, we would have become like Sodom, we would have been made like Gomorrah.”

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Fear of God Devotional: The Blessing of the Fear of God

How is the fear of God a blessing?

In this video, Carlton McLeod explains how the fear of the God is a blessing to believers. Once the believer begins to see who God is, how great He is, how awesome He is, how loving and how holy He is, there is a reverent trembling that results. God has saved us from the pit of hell. How can we purposefully continuously displease Him? I dare not do such a thing!

It is a part of discipleship, where the believer sees God as being supremely holy. The blessing comes when the believer says to himself, “I dare not sin against this God, I dare not hurt this God who has healed all of my hurt.” Ask yourself if there are sins or desires in your life that you’re stubbornly refusing to surrender to God and repent of them.

James 1:17 (NKJV) – “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning.”

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Fear of God Devotional: The Wrath of God is Holiness in Action

What happens when people do not have a fear of God?

Clarence Simmons explains in this video that the wrath of God is essentially holiness in action. When there is no fear of God, we offend a holy God because we are acting in a way contrary to His holiness, His will, and His ways, which brings forth the wrath of God.

There is certainly a connection between a lack of the fear of God and the wrath of God. When we live in ungodliness and do not fear God, we can be assured that God will subsequently respond with wrath against ungodliness and unrighteousness. We ought to prayerfully consider if there are areas in our life where we do not fear God as we ought.

Ezekiel 25:17 (NKJV) – “I will execute great vengeance on them with furious rebukes; and they shall know that I am the Lord, when I lay My vengeance upon them.”

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Today at 5:00pm EST – Hebrews – A Superior Savior for a Superior Life

Today at 5:00pm EST we will be studying the book of Hebrews, as we are “Rediscovering the New Testament Church.” 

Hebrews was written to a people who had lost their zeal, were shrinking back, and wanting to turn back from Christ because of pressures from the people they left in Judaism. This is why the author declares the fact that a superior Savior, brought a superior covenant, resulting in a superior life. God gives us tremendous help in understanding the intended purpose of the book of Hebrews. It is found in the last few sentences of the letter. Hebrews ends with the words, “bear with the word of exhortation. (Hebrews 13:22)

Hebrews is an exhortation in the fullest sense of the word, not only as teaching and correction, but also encouragement and comfort – the comfort of Christ Himself. You can LISTEN LIVE by clicking here.

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Father Son Retreat Sept 30-Oct 1 – Wake Forest NC

It is almost time for the Father Son Retreat, which is September 30 – October 1 (Friday afternoon-Saturday) at the Brown Farm.

Date: Sept 30-Oct 1 at the Brown Farm.
Speakers: Scott Brown, Jason Dohm, Mike Davenport and Paul Carrington.
Subject:  The Men Who Feared Their God
Cost: $40 per person or $100 per family, whichever is cheaper.

The retreat begins on Friday at 6:00 Sept 30 for dinner, and ends at 4:00 on Saturday. Meals include Dinner Sept 30, breakfast and lunch on Saturday.

To register, please email the name of each person attending, along with the age of each son, to Alan Hillman at [email protected].

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Fear of God Devotional: The Fear of God is Everything in Life

How does the fear of God benefit all areas of life?

In this video, Mala Chindongo explains that the fear of God is everything in life – it brings order to society, order in our homes, and order in the heart of a man. There is a saying in Africa that a man who does not fear God is a beast.

This is true in life. If you don’t fear God, you have a seared conscience and if you do not fear God, you will not respect other individuals. This lack of the fear of God has resulted in people worshipping their ancestors, murdering children, or even dictators killing people because of a dislike of them. This is evidence of a lack of a fear of God.

This idea has played out again and again throughout history. In places that do not have any knowledge or fear of God, we find cannibalism and all kinds of abuses going on. In contrast, when the Gospel is preached, things dramatically change when people’s hearts are regenerated.

1 Timothy 4:1-2 (NKJV) – “Now the Spirit expressly says that in latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons, speaking lies in hypocrisy, having their own conscience seared with a hot iron”

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Fear of God Devotional: How Handling Things Our Own Way is a Sign We Don’t Fear God

How does doing things our way demonstrate we don’t fear God?

Craig Houston explains in this video that we as sinful human beings like to handle things our own way or to accomplish tasks in the manner we desire instead of fearing God enough to say, “What would God want me to do” or “How would He want me to respond?”

God’s Word teaches us that to obey is better than sacrifice. God desires obedience more than sacrifices. When we understand that, then what He wants for us matters more than what we want for ourselves. Jesus said, “If you love me, keep my commandments.” In other words, if you love Christ, fear Him and obey Him. Following Him should take priority above all else. His way alone is true and good. We are not to let pride get in the way of following the commands of Christ.

1 Samuel 15:22 (NKJV) – “Has the Lord as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the Lord? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to heed than the fat of rams.”

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