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Scared to Death - A Devotion

Scared to Death
Scared to Death
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Galatians 5:1&7-8 (NLT)
“So Christ has truly set us free. Now make sure that you stay free, and don’t get tied up again in slavery to the law…”

“You were running the race so well. Who has held you back from following the truth? It certainly isn’t God, for he is the one who called you to freedom.”

Fear kills faith. It is the assassin of hope in Jesus Christ. It has many victims on any given day. It is no respecter of persons and will take you out if given the chance. Fear lurks in the shadows waiting to attack. It is not strong enough to take you so it must wait until you are weak and vulnerable. When it comes, it latches on refusing to let go like a giant anaconda choking its prey hungry and ready to consume you completely. Fear is the weapon of choice that the enemy uses like ricin once it is inside of you it does a stealth work. Everyone is afraid of death. It is simply human nature. With a God who cannot be seen and the arms of a Savior who we cannot feel, it is up to our heart and mind by faith to take hold of confident hope and never let go. Most people who call themselves Christians still are scared to death of dying. They are afraid to believe in the impossibilities of life because God resembles all the other people who have let them down. They are molded by situations and circumstances rather than their God-given inheritance called eternal life. We live under the stress and pressure of fear so long that we become accustomed to its weight and have adjusted our gait. We are called to run the race of faith but we are crawling to get by. Jesus Christ has truly set us free. It is up to us to maintain our freedom by refusing fear and packing faith in its place. We cannot get tied up in the slavery of the law or returning to sin. God has called you to freedom. It is written in His Plan that includes a future and hope. (Jeremiah 29:11) It is time to stop being ignorant about the new life that the Lord has given us, break the stronghold of fear and take back what the enemy is trying to take from us.

Romans 3:23-24 (NLT)
For everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God’s glorious standard. Yet God freely and graciously declares that we are righteous. He did this through Christ Jesus when he freed us from the penalty for our sins.

Everyone has sinned and fallen short of God’s Glorious standard of living. God freely and graciously has provided the payment for our penalty to allow us to step into our position as His Children and accept our inheritance once again. Fear tells us that even so we will never be worthy of God’s Love and Favor. If that were the case, why would He give His Only Son if there was no real potential of a true relationship with mankind? This would seem like overkill. Jesus Christ completely freed us from the penalty of our sin. We do not understand this kind of forgiveness because we have never experienced unconditional love. Human love always comes with conditions. Forgiveness almost always requires some form of repayment if not monetarily than emotionally or physically in this life. So when we encounter the unconditional and unfailing love of God through Jesus Christ, we do not recognize it, understand it or even know how to accept such an amazing gift and unbelievable offer. The glorious standard of living that we are missing out on is not following the Law of God but experiencing the Favor of the Lord.

Isaiah 61:1-3 (NLT)
The Spirit of the Sovereign LORD is upon me, for the LORD has anointed me to bring good news to the poor. He has sent me to comfort the brokenhearted and to proclaim that captives will be released and prisoners will be freed. He has sent me to tell those who mourn that the time of the LORD’s favor has come, and with it, the day of God’s anger against their enemies. To all who mourn in Israel, he will give a crown of beauty for ashes, a joyous blessing instead of mourning, festive praise instead of despair. In their righteousness, they will be like great oaks that the LORD has planted for his own glory.

Jesus Christ is the One who came to bring good news to the poor. He is the One who was sent to comfort the brokenhearted. He came to set the captives free. He came to set prisoners free, too. Why would there be imprisonment? There are captives and then there are prisoners. I believe that captive are believers who have accepted Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord but not stepped out of fear by faith into confident hope. Prisoners are the lost who are still bound by sin. The difference is the captive has been set free. How awful to think that you have been given all power and authority of Jesus Christ to step from the darkness into the Light but fear is holding the door shut. Faith believes that there is more to life than this and is willing to leave its comfort zone to find it. There are some victims out there that need to identify with their new title as victors. Jesus came to set us free. (Isaiah 42:5-7) He paid for our freedom in full so nothing more is required of us but to walk in it. (Isaiah 44:22) He then gave our freedom back to us. (Isaiah 49:8-10) It wouldn’t be love if He forced Himself upon us holding captivity over us when we did not obey. We must use our freedom to empower of our life by choosing by faith to live in an everlasting covenant with God the Father through Jesus Christ His Son. (Isaiah 55:1-3) We must overcome our fear to do this. Faith over fear will make a way for freedom in your life.

Romans 7:23-25 (NLT)
But there is another power within me that is at war with my mind. This power makes me a slave to the sin that is still within me. Oh, what a miserable person I am! Who will free me from this life that is dominated by sin and death? Thank God! The answer is in Jesus Christ our Lord. So you see how it is: In my mind I really want to obey God’s law, but because of my sinful nature I am a slave to sin.

Sin is constantly working to regain control of our heart and mind. This is it for your sinful nature and flesh. When you step over from here into Eternity, only your spirit will go. The body is still bound for the grave with all its problems, sickness, disease, weakness and infirmities. It’s game over. Paul says, “In my mind I really want to obey God’s Law, but because of my sinful nature…” The win is secured for the sinner set free by the Blood of Jesus Christ but fight for control continues until we leave our flesh behind. The Word of God warns us to guard our heart and mind for this very reason. You can do all the right things, say all the right words, but if your heart and mind become bound in fear – you will never accomplish the Glorious Standard of Living that Jesus Christ died for us to have. (Romans 6:13-15) Freedom in Christ is life and you cannot live bound by fear, shame, guilt or regret. Sin feeds our sinful nature empowering fear in our life. Faith destroys fear as we move from the darkness into the Light of God’s Love. It will open the door to fulfillment in our life as we learn to believe by faith rather than cowering in fear.

John 10:9-10 (NLT)
Yes, I am the gate. Those who come in through me will be saved. They will come and go freely and will find good pastures. The thief’s purpose is to steal and kill and destroy. My purpose is to give them a rich and satisfying life.

The gateway to freedom is open! You can come and go freely. The thief wants to steal, kill and destroy but cannot do so unless we let him in or go into his territory. If we live in the Presence of the Lord then he is powerless in our life. We must break the trap of fear that the enemy sets in our life. (Psalm 124:7-8) It is weak and flimsy compared to the Power of God manifested in our life. We must allow the Lord to open our eyes and ears so we can be staunch defenders of the faith that we have been given working diligently to produce confident hope. (Psalm 146:6-8) When we know the Truth, it will set us free. (John 8:31-32) If the Son sets us free, no matter where we are or what we are doing – we can be free. (John 8:36) Freedom is a choice. We decide whether to walk in freedom or remain in bondage. It begins in our heart and head. The Word of God is the answer to all of our problems so we have nothing to fear if we do what the Word says. (Psalm 119:45) It always leads to freedom. The Lord has given us His Spirit. The Holy Spirit is the living breathing essence of God given to us. He lives inside of us. God will tell us things through His Spirit that are wonderful secrets. He never contradicts the Word but expounds upon it as God makes it real to us. (I Corinthians 2:11-12) This will unlock new things in our life that we never thought were possible but now dare to believe are true. We will become bold as we discover who we are and what we are called and empowered to do as God’s Word and His Spirit work in us and through us to accomplish His Will. You will forget to be afraid. “For the Lord is the Spirit, and wherever the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. So all of us who have had that veil removed can see and reflect the glory of the Lord. And the Lord—who is the Spirit—makes us more and more like him as we are changed into his glorious image.” (2 Corinthians 3:17-18) The more and more we experience the possibilities and promises of our new life in Jesus Christ, the less likely we will be to accept compromise or less than God’s Very Best. This is the Glorious Life that Jesus Christ died for us to have so no matter what state our natural life is we are content in Christ.

Psalm 34:4-7 (NLT)
I prayed to the LORD, and he answered me. He freed me from all my fears. Those who look to him for help will be radiant with joy; no shadow of shame will darken their faces. In my desperation I prayed, and the LORD listened; he saved me from all my troubles. For the angel of the LORD is a guard; he surrounds and defends all who fear him.

God wants you to know that He is for you today. He has never been against you just the sin you held so tightly to. As we release the weight and heavy burden of our sin to Jesus Christ and strive to be free of it, we begin to experience a fearless life. Faith abounds into confident hope that His Unfailing Love, Mercy, Goodness, and Favor really are for me and we trust Him more. Take note in Psalm 34, the first thing that happened was the Lord released him from all my fears. Faith must flourish for deliverance to come. Without faith, it is impossible to please God. We must strip ourselves of those things that easily trip us up and keep us from the Glorious New Life we have been given. (Hebrews 12:1-2) Jesus is our Champion. We must just keep our eyes on Him. He is the gateway to freedom. He is shelter from every storm. He is who we run to. But first you must decide that He is for you! Jesus Christ died just for you to experience this freedom. If you were the only one left on the earth, He still would have done it. You are precious to God that’s why it is so important to Him that you are set free from fear and failure today! You don’t have to be scared to death or of death any longer. It doesn’t matter what the doctor says or even how you feel. Your life is subject to change the moment you accept faith over fear to be free!

Psalm 118:5-8 (NLT)
In my distress I prayed to the LORD, and the LORD answered me and set me free. The LORD is for me, so I will have no fear. What can mere people do to me? Yes, the LORD is for me; he will help me. I will look in triumph at those who hate me. It is better to take refuge in the LORD than to trust in people.