2 Timothy 1:7 “For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.”
1 John 4:18 “There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love.”
In one of my recent letters I wrote that we do not fight against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. I mentioned how a divisive spirit has entered and is bringing about divisions in our families, churches, politics and communities as well as in our countries.
Through the media we see another spirit that has entered and that is the spirit of fear. Because of the terrorist acts taking place around the world and the wide spread reporting with the technological advances where we are able to see the atrocities, the spirit of fear has entered into our societies and into our lives.
I remember how after 9/11 I had to go down to Brazil for meetings and the plane was almost empty. Very few people wanted to fly after what they saw the Twin Towers hit by terrorists taking control of planes. So it is today with what we see happening around the world that this spirit of fear has entered to paralyze us from doing what we should be doing and at the same time tempting us to get ready to surrender our freedom to whoever or whatever can get us out of this fear. Benjamin Franklin said it well: “Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.”
The fear that Timothy is talking about is better translated timidity. This is the type of fear that can be overcome by experience. For example, I hated public speaking; I was fearful, but when I began public speaking and preaching I overcame this fear.
However, the fear that John is speaking about is the type of fear called phobia. This fear – when it gets hold of you will paralyze you from doing what you need to do; this is the type of fear that will hold you back from achieving all that God has for you. This spirit of fear is overtaking societies today and it needs to be dealt with.
How do we deal with this spirit of fear? I am reminded of the answer that Jesus gave to His disciples when they tried to drive out a demon but could not: “Because you have so little faith. I tell you the truth, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.” (Matthew 17:20)
Two things come out here. First, we see that faith is needed. God is constantly wanting us to have a strong faith and we know that faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God. When we begin to read the Word and to apply it to our lives through obedience, our faith begins to grow.
A.W.Tozer said in his book called MAN: THE DWELLING PLACE OF GOD: “The man that believes will obey; and God gives faith to the obedient heart only.”
Secondly, we see that this type of fear (evil spirit) that John mentions is like a mountain that must be removed. Our problem is that we find in our talking and praying describing our mountain (fear) instead of saying to the mountain (fear), “be removed in Jesus’ Name.” If we do not deal with this mountain by faith then we will be hindered in accomplishing the will of God in our lives.
When this type of fear enters into our lives we must deal with it immediately and cast it out in Jesus’ Name. We speak to this fear (mountain) and cast it out with the authority that Jesus gave us. We do not give in to it at all, but immediately deal with it. This is where we learn to speak the Word of God.
Some years ago I was in Mexico City for a speaking engagement and late one night I woke up suddenly in fear. It was a deep fear of the future, the unknown. I got out of bed and began to speak against this spirit of fear. After about thirty minutes I went back to bed, but again I was bombarded by this evil spirit. Then I got up and took my Bible and started going through the Psalms and praising God and then I came to Psalm 34:4 that says: “I sought the Lord, and he answered me; he delivered me from all my fears.” When I read that out loud and claimed it, a deep peace came over me and this mountain (fear) left. Over the years when I consider the future and the unknown fear has not bothered me since.
SPEAK TO YOUR MOUNTAIN!!