Do Not be Afraid!

images

2020. Day 2 out of 365. Gulp. It’s been said that the phrase “Do Not be Afraid” appears 365 time in the Bible–once for each day of the year. Whether or not that’s accurate, the phrase does appear throughout the Bible. Could God be trying to tell us something?

Ever since Einstein’s day scientists have been trying to find a Unified Field, a framework that unifies all fundamental forces (gravity, electromagnetism, etc.). A few years back, the movie Interstellar dared to suggest (along with nearly every songwriter who ever lived) that love is the framework, the Unified Field.

Could love literally “make the world go ‘round?” And what’s the connection between love and the Bible’s insistence that we not be afraid? According to I John 4:18, “Perfect love casts out fear.” In other words, fear, not hatred, is the opposite of love.

Yet when people have visions of God they always seem to fall on the ground in fear (Revelation 1:17). Apostles, disciples, prophets–whenever anyone enters the presence of God, they act like lepers: “Get away from me, I’m unclean!” (Isaiah 6:6; Luke 5:8)

Why?

Because we think we’re OK until we see what OK really looks like. Then we suddenly understand that we’re not even close. And the closer we get to God, the more we understand just how broken our world is. And how broken we are. We’re selfish, vindictive, vain… You know what I’m talking about.

So the solution is to avoid God, right? Only if you want to live a lie. No, the solution is to dive into the black hole, the terrifying realization that the world is broken, and that we suck (my word, don’t look for it in the Bible) even more than the black hole does. That’s where God waits for us. But guess what? He isn’t the problem, he’s the solution. Because God doesn’t cause our fears, we do. But “perfect love casts out fear,” remember?

And God has an exclusive franchise on perfect love.

When we humble ourselves and admit we suck, his response is, “Yeah, I know, but you know what? I love you, and my love is the Unified Field that holds the whole universe together, so I’m pretty sure it can help you stop sucking. Now get over here and stop being afraid, ya knucklehead.” (James 4:10 and Micah 7:18-19 – very loosely paraphrased).

Happy New Year You!

About mitchteemley

Writer, Filmmaker, Humorist, Thinker-about-stuffer
This entry was posted in For Pastors and Teachers, Humor, Religion/Faith and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

37 Responses to Do Not be Afraid!

  1. Amen Mitch! He wants us to approach His throne of grace with freedom and confidence! God bless!

    Liked by 2 people

  2. jwfisch says:

    Mitch,

    We’ve got to team up somehow. We’re both singing the same tune. Where are you headquartered? I’m in southern California. I would love to get with you sometime, if not in person, perhaps by video or FaceTime. What do you think?

    John Fischer Catchjohnfischer.com

    >

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Happy New year to you also. Perfect love does indeed cast out fear. Proven many times.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Mark Brady says:

    Thanks Mitch! A very good word to start us off with in this new year! I actually heard this phrase in a movie (unfortunately I don’t remember which one): “Hope is the only thing greater than fear.” Pastor Robert Morris says, “As long as you are alive, you have hope!” Of course in God we find hope and love.
    Happy New Year Mitch! Don’t stop encouraging us, inspiring us, and daring us to go further with God.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Eliza says:

    There’s a difference between fear and awe…. and awe is not considered to be the opposite. Think of Abraham who served with love, Isaac with fear/awe and Jacob with both.
    Happy new year:)
    Love, light and glitter

    Liked by 2 people

  6. boromax says:

    Dang, Bro! This is so freakin’ good. May you be blessed with monumental fearlessness in the coming year! Hey, btw, love was also the answer in “The Fifth Element”

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Bruce says:

    Loved this … “Because we think we’re OK until we see what OK really looks like. Then we suddenly understand that we’re not even close. And the closer we get to God, the more we understand just how broken our world is. And how broken we are.” Thanks Mitch!

    Liked by 3 people

  8. abeaustin says:

    Oh, but it’s not day 2 of 365, Mitch. It’s a leap year this time, baby! 366

    Liked by 3 people

  9. SMZ says:

    I love those verses (James 4:10 and Micah 7:18-19 — paraphrased )
    Another of my favorites is: 1 Corinthians 16:14. It is front and center
    on my bulletin board. I have just come to realize why this blog
    is a daily ‘must-read’ for me. It makes me think and it gives me hope
    and it is like a giant sign in a busy intersection that points which way
    to go when the traffic would otherwise devour. Considering that, it
    sounds a lot like a study bible … Yes, it is.

    Liked by 2 people

  10. Clever Girl says:

    Okay but if God made us in his image, than we cannot be broken.

    I don’t feel myself or my inner being (Source, God) is broken in any way whatsoever. It’s taken me years of working on myself to understand that. I also believe loving yourself… really, truly loving yourself (not just saying you do)… is the baseline of where love starts. You must love yourself first and foremost.

    This is one of the problems I have with dogma/religion: that it makes us believe each one of us is somehow broken and need to be fixed. No wonder there’s so much fear, hatred, etc. in the world today. How can you love when you feel you’re broken and unlovable?

    Religion is one of the biggest propagators of the fear in which you refer.

    Liked by 3 people

    • mitchteemley says:

      Hi Katya, no disrespect intended whatsoever, but I’m inclined to give more credence to Jesus, the apostles, all of the Old Testaments prophets, and my own eyes. I have a very healthy sense of self-love, btw ( https://mitchteemley.com/2016/03/15/dont-love-yourself/ ). So, according to psychiatrists, do narcissists and sociopaths. Jesus didn’t preach against self-love, and neither does the Bible. But loving oneself doesn’t mean loving one’s wrongs. In fact, desire to change, to be a better person, is a sign of healthy self-love. I want to do better because I care about myself, and other people, and my Creator.

      Liked by 3 people

      • Clever Girl says:

        None taken. I’m addressing what you wrote: that we are all broken, I don’t subscribe to. I believe religion propagates self-hatred instead of propagating self-love, like Jesus did. But if you want to believe that you and the rest of the world are somehow intrinsically broken, I could never dissuade you from that.

        Liked by 1 person

  11. claire says:

    Well said. I loved the, “Because we think we’re OK until we see what OK really looks like.” bit.

    Liked by 2 people

  12. Awesome post, Mitch! Somebody smart once told me that the opposite of love is actually indifference. So there are really only two states of being in relationships, love or indifference, which means connection or anxiety, or faith or fear. It’s true of marriage and in our relationship with the Lord. We’re either feeling connected and secure or we’re feeling disconnected and anxious. We are safe, greatly loved, and connected, but sometimes that can be hard to lean into, hence the 365 fear nots in the Bible. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Bill Sweeney says:

    This is great, Mitch. I am wary of anyone who claims to be a good person, he/she has obviously not had a revelation of God. For the first five chapters, Isaiah is crying out “woe to them…” then he sees God and cries “woe is me!”
    Happy New Year!

    Liked by 2 people

  14. Wayne says:

    I love this Mitch!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Thank you for this post

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Great one, Mitch. It was almost as much of a treat to read all the comments and responses as it was to read and ponder your post. As it should, all need to have their own view as to where we are. As “Love makes the world go round”, Music may allow those who live their own definition of Our Creator. Is it not the Armour of Love that helps us to accept that which we Fear? Bless you, my Friend. We should have clearer vision with 20/20.

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Pingback: Do Not be Afraid! | Matthew Seufer Photography -Reaching Millions Worldwide with a GIFT of HOPE,COMFORT, and INSPIRATION in 2020.

  18. tellbelief says:

    well said.

    Liked by 1 person

  19. Angelilie says:

    I really like your blog. A pleasure to come stroll on your pages. A great discovery and very interesting blog. I’ll come back to visit you. Do not hesitate to visit my universe. See you soon. Happy New Year.

    Liked by 1 person

  20. Bill Sweeney says:

    Mitch, I’m glad you wrote this post, I’ve been reading the “Do not fear” verses. One of the best is the very last one: “Do not be afraid; I am the first and the last, and the living One; and I was dead, and behold, I am alive forevermore, and I have the keys of death and of Hades.” (Revelation 1:17-18).
    Great stuff!

    Liked by 1 person

  21. Luke Wagner says:

    Well put! And as a bonus, you reference one of my favorite movies!

    Liked by 1 person

  22. Pingback: Beyond Forgiveness | Mitch Teemley

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s