“Many people, including some of the Jewish leaders, believed in him. But they wouldn’t admit it to anyone because of their fear that the Pharisees would expel them from the synagogue.” — John 12:42*
“The fear of man brings a snare, but whoever trusts in the LORD shall be safe.” –Proverbs 29:25 New King James Version
Maybe “fear of man” snares me because it gets my mind off of God and onto me. Then I start leaning on my own understanding instead of trusting God with all my heart. And I become deceitful—hiding what I’m doing, thinking- planning–for fear of people’s rejection.
“The Lord is my helper, so I will not be afraid. What can mere mortals do to me?”– Hebrews 13:6*
What can people do to me? They can fire me from my job, make my work more difficult, or get angry with me and say ugly things. They can ignore, dislike, or even hate me. They could cause me physical or emotional pain. In the past, I’ve let these threats tie me in knots of deception, misery, and strained and broken relationships.
Now my prayer is, “Thank You, Father for pointing this out. I confess my “fear of man” as sin and thank You for Your promise of forgiveness (1 John 1:9). Please help me catch myself the next time I start to fear people (and the next, and the next, etc.)! Let me learn that none of what people can do really matters because You’re with me, accomplishing Your purposes in each situation. You’re the one to be feared, and by Your grace I’ll trust in You. Amen.”
“But the Lord watches over those who fear him, those who rely on his unfailing love.”–Psalm 33:18*
*New Living Translation