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Antidote to Fear

God Word provides promises to dispel our fears.
This article first appeared in the April 7, 1963, Pentecostal Evangel magazine.

Within proper limits, fear is a good thing. We cannot live without it. A child will burn herself unless she has a proper fear of fire. A pedestrian will be knocked down and killed unless he has a respectful fear of traffic dangers. A man cannot be a successful builder until he fears to put one rotten timber in his house, nor can he be a successful Christian until he fears to put one rotten thought into his character. It is a healthy trait to fear danger and sin in all its forms.

But there is another kind of fear that is very unhealthy, the kind that brings torment. It may be a fear of the future; fear of financial reverses; fear that some terrible illness or personal tragedy may lie ahead. These fears can paralyze a person. They may cause a physical breakdown. They poison the body and stifle the soul. They bind one's life with cruel knots.

The remedy for the “fear knots” of Satan is the "fear not's” of God. In the Bible, the best part of when God says “Fear not” is that He always backs it up with good reason. Men often tell us not to fear, but they can't tell us why we shouldn't do so. Whenever God says “Fear not,” He always gives a good promise on which we may stand.

If you are afraid of the future, remember the word that came to Moses when the people were trapped in a seemingly hopeless situation: “Do not be afraid. Stand firm and you will see the deliverance the LORD will bring you today ... ” (Exodus 14:13).

When tempted to be afraid, your faith may be too weak, or your abilities inadequate. Turn to Isaiah 43:1 and consider these reassuring words from the Lord: “Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine. ”

You need never fear failure or defeat, for the mighty God is with you. He says: “My Spirit remains among you. Do not fear” (Haggai 2:5).

You never need fear poverty, for Jesus said, “So don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows” (Matthew 10:31).

Do not be haunted with a fear of death. In Revelation 1:17-18, the Savior says, “Do not be afraid … I am alive forever and ever! And I hold the keys of death and Hades.”

Be not troubled with fearing anyone. God said to Isaac: “Do not be afraid, for I am with you; I will bless you” (Genesis 26 :24).

There is a monument to Lord Lawrence in Westminster Abbey which bears this inscription: “He feared man so little, because he feared God so much.” There is nothing like a vision of the greatness of our God — His power and His love — to reduce our troubles to their proper size.

“Do not let your hearts be troubled” (John 14:1). Have faith in God. Faith is the antidote to fear. Not faith in your faith, but faith in God.

When you are tempted to fear, just say with the psalmist, “I will trust and not be afraid” (Psalm 56:4). “I will fear no evil, for you are with me” (Psalm 23:4). There is no fear in love. Perfect love casts out all fear. You can prove your love for God by trusting Him. Trust in His power. Trust in His Word.

Always remember that God loves you. He loves you so much, in fact, that He never takes His eye off you, and He takes good care of all who trust in Him.

Robert C. Cunningham

Robert C. Cunningham served as editor of the Pentecostal Evangel magazine from 1949 to 1984.