The Wandering Desert Monk

The Wandering Desert Monk

Thursday, June 13, 2013

What! Fear God!


We are all looking for a glimmer of hope in the middle of our struggles. The people, the ancient prophet Isaiah to whom was writing, were displaced, homeless, starving, disoriented refugees in a foreign land. Throughout the writing, that Jews and Christians call the Book of Isaiah, there are hints to hope in darkness. Many of these texts were believed by the early church to be signposts of the coming of the Christ or Messiah. In one such passage, found in the eleventh chapter, Isaiah describes the hope that one like King David will come and establish his reign. One of the descriptions of this coming hope is this:

“(H)e will delight in the fear of the Lord.” Isaiah 11:3

What does this mean? And, if Jesus is a model for the lives of his followers, what does it mean for us to “delight in the fear of the Lord?” One thing it does not mean is living in the terror of some terrible judgment of an autocratic demagogue. To fear is to please or to fulfill the desires of the One being worshipped or revered. Notice it is with “delight” that he considers the Other.  Jesus said he loved to do the will of his Father even though it was not easy to do the Father’s will. When we follow Jesus we become co-lovers of the Father’s will and heart. – Ron Friesen

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