and when they had brought them, they set them before the council. and the high priest questioned them, saying, “we strictly charged you not to teach in this name, yet here you have filled jerusalem with your teaching, and you intend to bring this man’s blood upon us.” but peter and the apostles answered, “we must obey God rather than men.” [acts 5:27-29]
how much authority does someone have to have for you to fear them instead of God?
would an elder at your church have enough authority to make you fear them instead of God? how about your boss at work? your parents? your spouse? for many of us, even most of our peers somehow have this authority. take a moment, and ask the Lord to show you how the fear of man has stopped you from being open, honest, and the ambassador for Christ you’re called to be, and who in your life you fear more than God.
whoever the person, whatever the circumstance that causes you to fear man over God, God is in control! fearing man may save you a job, a relationship, or some discomfort, but in the long term it only solidifies distrust in God! if fearing God rather than man costs you something in this life, scripture promises you will receive a hundredfold in the kingdom!
“and everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or lands, for my name’s sake, will receive a hundredfold and will inherit eternal life.” [matthew 19:29]
“blessed are you when others revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account. rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you.” [matthew 5:11-12]
~ stephen hall