“The fear of man lays a snare, but whoever trusts in the Lord is safe… The fear of the Lord is a fountain of life, that one may turn away from the snares of death.” – Proverbs 29:25; 14:27
Scripture readings: Proverbs 29:25; 14:27
Dr. Ed Welch has written a book called “When People Are Big and God is Small.” What a great description of “the fear of man!” When you look at others through binoculars, they look enormous. You magnify them to appear bigger than they are.
We do this when we magnify the power of certain people over God to give us the love and approval we crave. We will sin against God rather than risk their disapproval. We become people-pleasers, controlled by others. We also do this when we believe that people who dislike, oppose or hurt us have more power than God over us. They and their power loom large in our hearts, crippling us with anxiety. We are willing to sin to appease them. “The fear of man lays a snare” (Proverbs 29:25a).
When you look through the wrong end of binoculars, everything looks smaller and further away. When gripped by the fear of man, we look at God through the wrong end of binoculars. He seems small and far away. Others are big and God is small in our hearts.
As you worship today, ask God to flip your binoculars and redirect them upward. As we magnify Him, He delivers us from the fear of man. “Oh, magnify the Lord with me, and let us exalt his name together!” (Psalm 34:3). “The fear of the Lord is a fountain of life, that one may turn away from the snares of death” (Proverbs 14:27).
Suggestions for prayer
Ask God to meet you in worship today to deliver you from the fear of man.
Pastor Richard Zekveld, his wife Nancy (nee Vandermeer), and their five children live in South Holland, Illinois, a suburb of Chicago. Richard has pastored Covenant Fellowship Church of South Holland (PCA) since 2015, he also works part-time in jail ministry as a chaplain for Chicagoland Prison Outreach. Get this devotional delivered directly to your phone each day via our RP App. It is also available in print, for purchase, at NTGDevotional.com.