the security of fear
"I will show you Whom you ought to fear." —Luke 12:5
We are in danger because the devil can kill our bodies (see Lk 12:4). He was even allowed to kill Jesus on the cross. However, although the devil can kill us, we are not afraid of him or of anyone else except God, for God has the power not only to kill us but also to cast us into Gehenna, that is, hell (Lk 12:5). Nevertheless, our fear of God, unlike any other fear, does not make us anxious or upset. Because we fear God, we are fearless of the devil and anyone else. "He who fears the Lord is never alarmed, never afraid; for the Lord is his hope" (Sir 34:14).
Our fear of God is a deep awareness of both His almighty power and unconditional love. With this awareness, we are totally secure. Because the One Who is almighty loves us, we have nothing to fear or worry about (see Rm 8:31). Our fear of God is the basis of fearlessness. While fear is usually the basis of insecurity, the fear of the Lord is a firm basis of security.
We received the spiritual gift of fear of the Lord at our Confirmation (see Is 11:2). God graces us to make "steady progress in the fear of the Lord" throughout our lives (Acts 9:31). Thereby, we live lives of fearlessness and of ever more solid security. Fear God.
Prayer: Father, I tremble at Your word (Is 66:2).
Promise: "You were sealed with the Holy Spirit Who had been promised. He is the Pledge of our inheritance, the first Payment against the full redemption of a people God has made His own, to praise His glory." —Eph 1:13-14
Praise: St. Teresa grew steadily in holiness as she learned to embrace suffering in imitation of the Lord.
Reference: (For a related teaching, order our tape Fear of the Lord and Evangelization on audio AV 59-1 or video V-59.)
Rescript: †Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, April 6, 2010
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