Fear God, Not Men

Many of us are afraid of the wrong people. In Ezra 5, the leaders of Israel explained to those who were opposed to the rebuilding of the Temple, what had led to its destruction. In verse 12 they explained: “But because our fathers had provoked the God of heaven to wrath, He gave them into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon …”. The Jewish leaders had the right perspective — one which many of us need to adopt as well.

It was not that Nebuchadnezzar or Babylon were so great that they overcame Israel. Rather GOD GAVE His people into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar because of their sin. This is a good reminder to us, that it is always GOD who is to be respected and feared, not men — even those who appear to us to be powerful.

It is just as Jesus said to Pilate in John 19:11, “You would have no authority over me unless it had been given to you from above.” Pilate, though “in charge” from a human standpoint, was only as powerful in this situation as God allowed Him to be, and Jesus knew it. He did not fear that man, who was merely carrying out what God had planned ages before.

Many of us, who fear men and tend to be intimidated by them, need to remember Jesus’ words. Those people who seem to be in charge of history — and your life — are really only pawns in the hand of God. Fear Him, not them.

About Shawn Thomas

My blog, shawnethomas.com, provides brief devotions from own personal daily Bible reading, as well as some of my sermons, book reviews, and family life experiences.
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