The Fear of the Lord

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




Proverbs spells out here that the beginning of wisdom does not come from studying hours upon hours a day. Wisdom is not gained through going to the biggest church in town. Wisdom does not begin after being a follower of Jesus for a certain number of years. Wisdom begins the moment we have the fear of the Lord in our hearts. I was watching the Basic Series by Francis Chan, and something he said really stood out to me. He said for years the church has read Proverbs 9:10 or similar verses and paused to tell the congregation something to the effect of “This doesn’t actually mean to fear God” or “This is more of a reverence or respect fear rather than actually being scared.”




But what does the Bible say about those who had the fear of the Lord in their hearts?




“In the year that King Uzziah died, I saw the Lord seated on a high and lofty throne, and His robe filled the temple. Seraphim were standing above Him; each one had six wings: with two he covered his face, with two he covered his feet, and with two he flew. And one called to another: “Holy, holy, holy is the LORD of Hosts; His glory fills the whole earth. The foundations of the doorways shook at the sound of their voices, and the temple was filled with smoke. Then I said: “Woe is me for I am ruined because I am a man of unclean lips and live among a people of unclean lips, and because my eyes have seen the King, the LORD of Hosts.” ~Isaiah 5:6




So when Isaiah was in the presence of the Lord, did he just show Him respect or acknowledge that He was a big deal? Absolutely not! He was terrified!




Let’s look at another person in Scripture:




When I turned I saw seven gold lampstands,  and among the lampstands was One like the Son of Man, dressed in a long robe and with a gold sash wrapped around His chest. His head and hair were white like wool—white as snow—and His eyes like a fiery flame. His feet were like fine bronze as it is fired in a furnace, and His voice like the sound of cascading waters. He had seven stars in His right hand; a sharp double-edged sword came from His mouth, and His face was shining like the sun at midday. When I saw Him, I fell at His feet like a dead man.”  Revelation 1:12-17




So here John just said, “Hey, Jesus You are so cool and I totally respect and revere You”, right? NO! He, like Isaiah, was TERRIFIED! There was genuine fear in John’s heart!




When you are faced before  I completely holy, all powerful, all knowing, ever present God, you suddenly realized how far short you are from His standard. When you suddenly put in that place, fear rises in your heart. But what happens in each one of those cases after the fear of God pieces the heart of man?




“Then one of the seraphim flew to me, and in his hand was a glowing coal that he had taken from the altar with tongs. He touched my mouth with it and said: Now that this has touched your lips, your wickedness is removed and your sin is atoned for. Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying: “Who should I send? Who will go for Us?” I said: “Here I am. Send me.” ~Isaiah 6:6-8





He laid His right hand on me and said, “Don’t be afraid! I am the First and the Last, and the Living One. I was dead, but look—I am alive forever and ever, and I hold the keys of death and Hades. Therefore write what you have seen, what is, and what will take place after this. ~Revelation 1:17-19




Both times after Isaiah and John realize who they are before and fall down in fear, God says, “Do not fear”. Why? ““The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom” 




Fear of the Lord causes us to obey God. If we truly believe the consequences that God lays out for sin, we will obey Him. We know what the consequences are and fear them! Fear of the Lord also causes us to love God as well. Think about it. For those of you reading this blog who have been saved by Jesus Christ, was it not the fear of your sin that drove you to your knees to ask for forgiveness. You may have felt ashamed or sorry for your sin, but at some point the fear of God does come into play there. If you weren’t scared of what the Gospel said about those outside of Christ, you would not have recognized your need for a Savior. So the Proverb is very much correct when saying “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom”. Although we have the fear of the Lord, we don’t have to go around and hope we don’t get zapped by God today. When you fear the Lord, your hearts desire is to please Him, so that results in your walking before Him in righteousness. It is when the fear of the Lord is not in your heart that you should truly be scared.




I pray that this blog will help those of you who are Christian believers and those who are not. Maybe you are reading this and do not know the Lord. I pray that you would consider that the Bible says the wages of sin are death. That Jesus Christ is the only way for eternal life with God. Those of you who are saved reading this blog, I pray that you would examine your life and find out if you are living a blameless life before God. America extremely lacks the fear of the Lord. So many want to come to God on their own agendas, do what they feel is right, participate in things of the world and still try to maintain a Christian faith, and look just like the world. God says you can not serve two masters. In other words you can’t love the world and love God. You have to choose. Choose to fear the Lord today. Blessings!





About Joey Coons

21 years old! God is the absolute center of my life. I love Jesus and I am passionate about my relationship with God. I am going to school for ministry at Global University. I feel God is calling me to minister to the youth of this generation, but I am willing to go wherever God calls me. My Bible is the source for everything. I have learned a lot lately about waiting on God and how hard it really is. But it ALWAYS the way to go. Listen for God's voice and obey Him. I am in an a band, Turnaround, and I love it. I am so excited to see what God does with us and I hope to uplift Christ with our music to everyone who hears us. God has surrounded me with amazing people in my life. You could probably say I have an obsession with music. I have the absolute weirdest taste in music. I listen to Christian music because I want to reflect God in all that I do in life. I love almost any genre of music. Except country, you can keep that junk... I am extremely goofy, and I mean VERY goofy I normally don't shut up if you start talking to me, I'm a talker Even though I never thought of myself as a reader, I actually love to read. My main purpose for this blog is to communicate God's truth and encourage anyone who reads my posts. I pray that God will use my words that I write to speak HIs truth into the lives of others and encourage others to follow Jesus Christ. View all posts by Joey Coons

3 responses to “The Fear of the Lord

  • Anne Sikes

    Wonderful post. Thank you! I know that through the years in Bible studies, the word ‘fear’ used about God, at least some of the times (I have not studied the language translations myself, so I rely on what I was taught as well as what I know in my personal walk with God) has been explained as having a meaning of a deep reverence, or respect. I imagine it would be like what we’re supposed to have for parents, or for teachers (though in today’s world it seems to be absent a lot of the time), only intensely and greatly magnified because of God’s greatness and holiness and authority. I will tell you that I certainly do not personally ‘fear’ God, in the way I would fear an intruder who was coming to harm me. The Bible describes Him as loving and merciful and as a Father who will take care of our needs, and as desiring none to perish…many verses and passages throughout. That said, if God suddenly appeared before me in the room in all His glory, I would undoubtedly be afraid. I don’t think I would be afraid in the sense that he was there to ‘zap’ me though…that is not the way He has shown Himself to be toward me. You know that passage in Ephesians 3:14-21? The way that prayer describes the love of God and how big and wonderful it is…and that the Ephesians would come to know that love that it’s impossible to comprehend…I know that love. I have felt it, once during a deep personal trial when I was too exhausted and overwhelmed with grief to even pray, but just sat alone quietly in my house and put myself into His presence, and ever since that day I have looked at that passage differently, because I ‘get it’. I get it in a way that I never really did before that time, and a way that I have never forgotten since, and that I’ve never experienced that intensely since either. That day was in November of 1999. I had been saved for about 17 years at the time. I have a deep, reverence and respect for God and certainly don’t think of Him as just some pal of mine or something. And like I said, if I was faced with Him standing in front of me, I would be afraid and probably tremble…but not afraid…I don’t think…in the same sense that I thought harm would come to me. I don’t know, since that’s never happened. Maybe it would be an intensely magnified version of if you’re at work doing your job and suddenly the head of the company walks in and stands before you. And that of course would be nothing in comparison to the magnitude of what it would be if God was standing there.

    All this said, in today’s world, there is such a loss of reverence or respect for authority, that I think that’s why people don’t revere God in that way. When they think of God in the way you described above, they think that’s just a mean and hateful God. He should be feared, as you point out that the Bible tells us…he should be recognized as the author of all creation who has the power to zap us if he wants to…to send us to the fires of hell. But being in Christ, I no longer fear the fires of hell. I do still strive and desire to live a holy life that is pleasing before God, because if I didn’t, that would be no kind of reverence or respect at all. And it’s the evidence of Christ in my life to want to keep God’s commandments out of reverence for Him.

    Thanks again…hope I didn’t sound argumentative here. Didn’t mean to at all, because why would I argue with Scripture, but just felt I needed to share this. Blessings always –Anne

    • Joey Coons

      Thanks Anne! No I agree with you. God is indeed a loving God and wants us to be able to approach Him in confidence. However, many times we come in without reckoning with our sin and asking forgiveness first, or coming to God on our own terms. I agree with you that God is a loving merciful God, and the fear of the Lord magnifies our love for Him. thanks for the encouragement!

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