Proverbs 9:10- “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom, and the knowledge of the Holy One is insight.”

The Bible commands us to not have a “spirit of fear” so what does it mean when we are told to have “the fear of the Lord?” It’s important to understand that living in the fear of the Lord is not the same thing as being afraid of spiders or being afraid of heights. At its most fundamental level the fear of the Lord means having an immense reverence and respect for God, and living in a way that communicates this fact.

Without the presence of the Holy Spirit in our lives we would not have the ability to fear the Lord. Our natural inclination is to subvert authority, not submit, to run our own show, not follow someone else’s direction. When we become fully devoted followers of Jesus we learn to submit to God’s direction and put our own destructive desires to death. We learn to show kindness to others and treat people in a way that communicates that they too are created in God’s image.

Acts 9:31- “Then the church throughout Judea, Galilee, and Samaria experienced a time of peace. It grew in strength and numbers, living in the fear of the Lord and the encouragement of the Holy Spirit.”

Most committed Christians want to see their church filled with God’s peace and growing in strength and numbers. Churches attempt to accomplish this through various means these days whether it be through seeking to entertain people, to put on a good show, or to make sure they have a charismatic Pastor. In the book of Acts we find the key to God’s peace and growth in the church: “living in the fear of the Lord and the encouragement of the Holy Spirit.”

The Bible puts a responsibility on all of God’s people to live a life that shows immense reverence towards God and a close relationship with the Holy Spirit. When a Church Body truly commits to do this as a whole there is no end to how many blessings will flow upon His people. When we finally lay aside a consumeristic mindset and devote ourselves to living a life of wholehearted service and love toward God, peace and strength will be the supernatural result.