1. In Mark 4:40 Jesus asked His disciples a question after He calmed the storm by saying, "Peace, be still" -- "Why are ye so fearful?" 2. In 1 John 4:18 the Bible teaches us why we must avoid being fearful as well as how to avoid it. 3. In our lesson we are covering a number of passages that show us: a. why we must avoid being fearful 1) We will look at some Bible characters that struggled with "fear." 2) We will look at the consequences they faced because of "fear." b. how to avoid being fearful. 4. Let us begin by showing that . . .
I. THE BIBLE ADDRESSES DIFFERENT TYPES OF "FEAR"
A. On the positive side, the Bible teaches us to "fear God" (Ecclesiastes 12:13). 1. This type of "fear" involves respect, honor, and reverence. 2. This type of "fear" will lead us to do God's will [this point is well illustrated by Noah -- Hebrews 11:7]. B. On the negative side, the Bible teaches us not to allow our hearts to be filled with "fear" (John 14:27). 1. This type of "fear" involves dread, apprehension, anxiety, etc. 2. This type of "fear" must not be confused with "caution." C. With these general matters before us, let us allow the Bible to show us . . .
II. WHY WE MUST AVOID BEING FEARFUL [A number of Bible characters struggled with "fear," and they faced some serious consequences]
A. Abraham 1. He demonstrated his "fear" in Genesis 20:1-2, 10-11. 2. "Fear" led Abraham to practice deceit. B. Moses 1. He demonstrated his "fear" in Exodus 3:11, 13; 4:1, 10. 2. "Fear" led Moses to offer excuses to God. C. Elijah 1. He demonstrated his "fear" in 1 Kings 19:1-4. 2. "Fear" caused Elijah to become despondent. D. Job 1. He demonstrated his "fear" in Job 3:25. 2. Job's "fear" became a reality. E. Peter 1. He demonstrated his "fear" in Matthew 14:30; 26:69-75. 2. Peter's "fear" caused him to sink in the water and to deny Jesus. F. The one-talent man 1. He demonstrated his "fear" in Matthew 25:24-25. 2. "Fear" prevented this man from using what he had been given. G. These Bible characters show us why we must avoid being fearful. H. Let us turn our attention to some verses that teach us . . .
III. HOW TO AVOID BEING FEARFUL
A. We must remember that the Lord forbids "fear." B. We must remember that "fear" does not come from God (2 Timothy 1:7). C. We must remember what will happen to "the fearful" (Revelation 21:8). D. We must place our trust in God, especially when it comes to things that are unknown (Proverbs 3:5-6). E. We must live one day at a time (Matthew 6:34). F. We must fill our hearts with love (1 John 4:18).
1. Do you "fear" God? 2. Do not let the wrong kind of "fear" prevent you from doing what He wants you to do.