THE FEAR OF THE LORD
"And when I was with you in weakness, and in fear, and in much trembling" (I Cor. 2:3).
If someone just pulled this verse out of context and looked at it, they might have these questions, "Who is this Paul?" "Is he some kind of a weakling?" "Canít God get somebody better to speak for Him to His church??"
Paulís Example of Endurance in the Christ-life
In context, we learn that Paul was an apostle of Jesus Christ through the will of God (I Cor. 1:1). While I may not know everything about the apostle Paul, the Lord Jesus chose him specifically as His chosen vessel to speak in His name (Acts 9:15,16). That answers the first and third questions above that they might have.
What about that second question, "Is he some kind of a weakling?" The answer is. . .No! Certainly in the natural Paul had withstood stripes, beatings, stonings, shipwreck in perilous waters, perils by robbers, perils by his countrymen, perils by the heathen, perils in the city, perils in the wilderness, weariness, painfulness, thirst, fastings often, with cold and nakedness (II Cor. 11:23-27). This is not a weakling but a strong witness of the life and endurance of the Lord Jesus Christ living in and through him (Gal. 2:20).
Paul in Christ's Love Focused on Jesus Christ and Him Crucified
When Paul came in the complete love of the Lord and of the Corinthians that day, he was fully walking in the Spirit and obeying the will of the Father. However, in that close communion, and fully knowing his impact to the Corinthians, he came that day in the fear of the Lord. He was "in weakness, and fear, and in much trembling" (I Cor. 2:3), because of the awesome responsibility he had been given by God. Knowing that he could make a wrong decision, say something in the flesh rather than 100% in the Spirit, caused Paul to be fearfully concerned. It was not a lack of faith or trust in God that he faced, but knowing at anytime he could move into the flesh and stop Christ from flowing forth spontaneously in and through Him to achieve the Fatherís will and purpose. As Paul, may we in all things in life, remain focused on Christ and Him crucified walking in the fear of the Lord.V
Written by Dwight Davis
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