Thursday, 5 February 2015
By the fear of man, one is caught in a snare
The fear of man bringeth a snare: but whoso putteth his trust in the LORD shall be safe (Proverbs 29:25).
Many modern evangelicals oppose open-air preaching, such as one at ES, on the grounds that it reinforces the negative "stereotype" that true God-fearing Christians are "intolerant", "judgmental", "narrow-minded", "legalistic" and "loving to impose one's views on others". Such is the fear of man.
Fear of man is the love of man's approval, to seek to approval of the enemies of God. Fearing man is to serve the enemies of God, rather than God. Do you really love the enemies of God more than God? It seem to be the case with many in the modern church who spend fruitless hours and years trying to find "culturally appropriate" ways to preach the Gospel. To seek the approval of man is to trust man's judgment of morality over God's judgment. Who is man to judge God's?
It is evil to fear man, because fearing man is the absence of fear of God. Only by the fear of God does one depart from evil. Jeremiah 17:5-8 says: Cursed be the man that trusteth in man, and maketh flesh his arm, and whose heart departeth from the . For he shall be like the heath in the desert, and shall not see when good cometh; but shall inhabit the parched places in the wilderness, in a salt land and not inhabited. Blessed is the man that trusteth in the , and whose hope the is. For he shall be as a tree planted by the waters, and that spreadeth out her roots by the river, and shall not see when heat cometh, but her leaf shall be green; and shall not be careful in the year of drought, neither shall cease from yielding fruit.
For am I now seeking the favor of men, or of God? Or am I striving to please men? If I were still trying to please men, I would not be a bond-servant of Christ (Galatians 1:10).