A Word from Curt…
Posted: July 24th, 2014
Fear. Awe. Wonder. Does that describe your attitude toward God?
Awe is “a sense of amazement and respect, mixed with fear, which is often coupled with a feeling of personal insignificance or powerlessness.”
Our daily Bible readings this month are taking us through II Peter and the Gospel of Mark. In his letter, Peter talks about divine power, Majestic Glory, escaping corruption and fiery destruction. He warns us to “make every effort” to know Christ intimately and grow up spiritually.
II Peter 2 is a difficult chapter that emphasizes 3 important truths: (1) God is sovereign; (2) God knows how to punish the wicked; and (3) God knows how to rescue the righteous. Only a fool would ignore God or refuse to take him seriously!
Hebrews 12:29 encourages us to “worship God acceptably with reverence and awe, for our God is a consuming fire.” Fear. Awe. Wonder.
The disciples were no doubt “worshiping acceptably” in Mark 4:41 as they watched Jesus calm a powerful storm. “They were terrified and asked each other, ‘Who is this? Even the wind and the waves obey him!’”
What a stark contrast to Mark 7, where Jesus calls the religious leaders “hypocrites” and quotes Isaiah 29 to them: “These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me. They worship me in vain; their teachings are but rules taught by men.”
Are you “going through the motions” like the Pharisees or “living in fear and amazement” like the disciples? Psalm 128:1 says, “Blessed are all who fear the Lord, who walk in his ways.” On the other hand, Psalm 36:1-2 says of a wicked man: “There is no fear of God before his eyes… he flatters himself too much to detect or hate his sin.”
Jesus clearly explains what is at stake here: “If any of you wants to be my follower, you must turn from your selfish ways, take up your cross, and follow me. If you try to hang on to your life, you will lose it. But if you give up your life for my sake and for the sake of the Good News, you will save it. And what do you benefit if you gain the whole world but lose your own soul? Is anything worth more than your soul?” Mark 8:34-37 (NLT)