GotQuestions: “What does it mean to have the fear of God?”

 

What are your thoughts on this week’s QOTW? – http://www.gotquestions.org/questweek.html – “What does it mean to have the fear of God?”



1 Comment »

  1. Comment by Robert

    I guess it means awe and respect (perhaps in the same way as a student might fear a principal/headmaster). It doesn’t obviously mean fear like we’d fear a wild animal or a natural disaster.




  2. Comment by Michael James Stone

    For me this was a good questions:
    “What does it mean to have the fear of God?”

    I grew up with absolutely no religious teaching or training. I had not been in a church. I did not know about God. I had no thoughts about the subject one way or another because I wasn’t interested and frankly no one was interested in me, or so I thought.

    If you had asked me about Hellfire and Brimstone I wouldn’t have had a clue what you were talking about.

    I got saved in the Jesus Movement by love. Everyone around me was glowing and loving and I wanted what they had. I didn’t know what sin or salvation was and while Greg Laurie is polished now, back then it was more like: If you want what we got COME ON DOWN!!

    WOO HOO I CAME ON DOWN,..and yes I had a very emotional religious miraculous salvation everyone wanted and few got, but for me I still had questions.

    You see, when I got saved I had Jesus down, I understood the Father, I know all bout the Spirit but I hadn’t a clue about this thing called the “Fear of the Lord”

    So dummy me like I had done since I got saved, I asked God about it.

    Now maybe for you that is prayer, but for me we were in some pretty tight communication in my early days and ALOT kept happening which i would later be required to talk and write about.

    SO I was laying on my couch looking up and thinking about God and talking: “Father” I said, ‘why do people fear you?”

    Time stopped. Breathing stopped. I didn’t move. I could see the cieling swirl into a mass of clouds. Like cumulous nimbus or like on TV the Old Greatest Heroes of the Bible when they Swirled a cloud mass and God spoke.

    This was indoors. This was above me. This I could not move from. This I could not Speak. This I could breathe. This I watched.

    No thought, no voice, no movement, no fear per se, but I knew what Awe was before I could say I was IN AWE now as I was “likened unto dead man” without movement, breathe or “you name it.”

    An hour went by. Later I knew that. I could not move think or do but simply exist and while I had no fear the way we are afraid, I knew I was in the presence of God Almighty more than my Father and Lord Jesus and I could only exist.

    Looking back, it was awesome. I knew later it was for me to “know” that “Fear of the Lord” and what it actually is though it will be manifested by others in different ways.

    God, in His presence, is a Awe and if I may “selah” in creation of the dimensional reality of what who and How he is and the worst we have to describe is called the Fear of the Lord and the best we can say as just is to have bee there and seen that, like Paul said, It is Sin to describe, for nothing can.

    (For those who doubt, No offense, since i am the one who experienced it, it doesn’t matter, I can only say What I saw; Heard and experienced, and until you been there; you just don’t know).

Q&A with Adrian Rogers: Will America Survive?

Articles by Love Worth Finding

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Will America Survive?
Adrian Rogers

It’s the question of the day. Can we stay God’s hand of certain judgment? Several years ago, Adrian Rogers found the answer to these compelling questions in Psalm 80, and his message is as timely as ever.

  1 Give ear, O Shepherd of Israel, Thou that leadest Joseph like a flock; Thou that dwellest between the cherubim, shine forth.  2 … stir up Thy strength, and come and save us.  3 Turn us again, O God, and cause Thy face to shine; and we shall be saved.

Israel was praying for national revival. A nation with a glorious heritage, delivered from the gnawing chains of Egyptian bondage, led through the Red Sea and Sinai Desert, Israel came into the Promised Land. Never has there been a nation quite like them. Because God was their King, He blessed them to such a degree that when the Queen of Sheba came, she said, “The half has never yet been told.”

God had given Israel a Lord (Himself), a land, and a law. But Israel turned from God, denied the Lord, defied the law, and defiled the land. God withdrew His blessings and calamity came. In Psalm 80, Israel is now praying, “O God, cause Your face to shine on us. O God, turn us back to You. Do it, Lord, and we will be saved.”

America is not Israel, but there’s a striking parallel with what’s happening to America today. I don’t believe I’m outside the bounds of Scripture by making an application from this psalm to America. We want God to bless America. But we must confess that America as we know her now has forgotten God and totters on the brink of destruction.

Even so, I believe there is a way for America to recover.

 
 
A Glorious National Design.

I firmly believe this nation with its Christian beginning was a nation God planted. America did not come into being by happenstance but by the will and plan of God Himself, Who placed the American dream in the hearts of our Founding Fathers. As you read the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution, the spiritual heritage of America runs all the way through them. When the little rag-tag Continental Army was fighting the British at Valley Forge, General George Washington went out to kneel in the snow to pray for his army. When a stranger came to the Continental Congress and wanted to know which man was Washington, a friend said, “When the Congress begins to pray, Washington will be the tall man who will go to his knees.”

Why has America been the richest nation on earth? Because the sun shines more here? More rainfall? We’re stronger? No! These are blessings from God. “Blessed is that nation whose God is the Lord.”

 

A Grave National Danger

In verse 12 the psalmist said that Israel was no longer defended. There was danger from both internal and external heathen powers. Today godless, violent forces come against America—from both outside and within. Corrupt politicians and clueless pundits mock God’s principles and those who honor them. God has turned Himself against us because of our sin.

 

A Gracious National Deliverance.

We must acknowledge our sin, deal with it, and confess it. Psalm 80 shows us how to pray for national revival. This is the prayer God will bless:

 14Return, we beseech Thee, O God of hosts: look down from heaven, and behold, and visit this vine; 15And the vineyard which Thy right hand hath planted, and the branch that Thou madest strong for Thyself…. 17Let Thy hand be upon the man of Thy right hand….18So will not we go back from Thee: quicken us, and we will call upon Thy name. 19Turn us again, O LORD God of hosts, cause Thy face to shine; and we shall be saved.

This is the gracious national deliverance God promised Israel—the deliverance we need and can be ours if we will confess, repent, and call upon His name.

Satan’s strategy is to keep good people silent in evil times. Will you speak up? Do you know what the issues are? For instance, are you letting your voice be heard against pornography, perversion, corruption, and the murder of the innocents?

God is still a God of mercy. Just as God could do for Israel, He can do for any nation that repents. Today America must look to God. The Pentagon—economists—politicians—educators—cannot save us. Only God can save America. Without a spiritual revival there is no hope for our nation. We must return to God so God will return us.

What time is it in America? It is knee time. Time to be on our knees, time to be on our face, before an Almighty God.

Q&A with John MacArthur : The Essential Second (Christian Dating & Relationships)

Articles by Grace to You

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The Essential Second
John MacArthur

A well-known Peanuts cartoon shows Lucy accusing her little brother, Linus, of not loving his fellow man. "I love mankind," was his indignant response, "it's people I can't stand!" It is very easy to love the whole wide world, and it is easy to love the church. However, it may be very difficult to love one particular person. But the love our Lord calls you to exercise is a practical, personal kind of love that is expressed primarily to individuals.

A Jewish law expert once asked Jesus, "What is the greatest commandment?" You remember His answer: "You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the great and foremost commandment" (Matt. 22:37-38). Though that seemed to satisfy the question, Jesus wasn't finished. Without taking a breath, He added, "The second is like it, 'You shall love your neighbor as yourself'" (v. 39).

Love for God and love for your neighbor are vitally connected and cannot be separated – you cannot do one without doing the other. How important is this second commandment? James called it the "royal" or sovereign law – it towers over the rest. Paul said if you keep it, you will be fulfilling the demands of the entire Old Testament (Rom. 13:9; Gal. 5:14).

Recognizing the command is one thing – understanding and practicing biblical love is another.

Love in Action 

When I first came to Grace Community Church, I wanted badly to love everyone, but I couldn't figure out how to get the emotional feeling I thought was necessary. Some people were kind of irritating, and some even purposely made things difficult for me. I wanted to love them, but I didn't know how. One day I went to a man who was particularly difficult, put my arm around him, and said, "I want you to know something. If there's any way I can ever serve you, I'd sure love to have the opportunity." The opportunity came. My attitude toward him didn't change because of how I felt about him emotionally, but because of how I came to love him by serving him.

Loving others is not a question of patting someone on the back and saying, "You're so wonderful, so irresistible. I love you!" You show love by making personal sacrifices to meet someone's need. Sometimes I'm asked how I can minister to individuals in a large church. It is not by running around to everyone and expressing love, but by making sacrifices in my life to help them grow spiritually. I care enough about them to do what is necessary in my life to bring them into conformity to Jesus Christ.

If you still have doubts about what biblical love is, ponder this: Has God ever shouted, "I love you!" from heaven or written it in the sky? No; we see the love of God in Christ laying down His life for us. God put His Son on a cross on our behalf. That is how He expressed His love – through sacrifice. Since Christ "laid down His life for us ... we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren" (1 John 3:16).

Death isn't always the price; sometimes love requires the sacrifice of your possessions, your time, or some other precious commodity. "But whoever has the world's goods, and sees his brother in need and closes his heart against him, how does the love of God abide in him?" (1 John 3:17). If you see someone who has a need, you must meet that need as far as you're able, or you prove yourself to be deficient in love.

"Well," someone interjects, "before we can love someone, we have to love ourselves. After all, the Bible says in James 2:8 we are to love our neighbors as we love ourselves." That is a popular concept. But it is not what James 2:8 (or the rest of Scripture) teaches. Psychologists have made a business out of misinterpreting that verse. They say you must learn a "healthy" self-love to gain a good self-image; if you do not have a high regard for yourself, you will never be able to love other people the way God intended.

That's a serious misunderstanding. Those who advocate the saying, "learn to love yourself before you can love others," naively ignore what the Bible teaches about sin – that it is inherently self interested. To teach someone to love themselves is to justify or encourage the consuming sin of pride and to undercut any effort or desire to sacrifice self and love others.

So what does it mean to love others as you love yourself? Look at James 2:1: "My brethren, do not hold your faith in our glorious Lord Jesus Christ with an attitude of personal favoritism." The text goes on to give the illustration of a rich man and a poor man visiting a congregation and being treated differently. James is saying that as a Christian you are not to treat certain people with respect while you treat others with indifference. Rather, to fulfill the royal law, you are to treat everyone as you would treat yourself – the assumption is that you are already naturally inclined to treat yourself best. Whatever great sacrifices you make for your own comfort, you should make the same for the comfort of others, without respect to their status in life. It has nothing to do with the importance of loving self; it has to do with your service toward others.

Just stop, for example, and consider the lengths you go to make yourself comfortable. That is the same way you should meet the needs of others. The way you treat your own desires is the way you should treat the desires of others. You should love them in terms of self-sacrificing service, just as you make sacrifices for your own benefit.

Are you willing to do that? Are you willing to give up whatever it is that makes you comfortable in order to provide for the comfort of someone else? Are you willing to sacrifice the things you enjoy so another's needs may be met? That is loving your neighbor as yourself. It is not psychological; it is sacrificial.

Love in Humility

One vivid example of self-sacrificing love for others was given Jesus Himself. On the night before He suffered and died, the Lord did not tell His disciples in the upper room, "I love you. I'd like to give you a discussion of divine love and tell you how it works."

Instead, our Lord washed His disciples' feet. John 13:3-5 says, "Jesus…got up from supper, and laid aside His garments; and taking a towel, He girded Himself. Then He poured water into the basin, and began to wash the disciples' feet and to wipe them with the towel with which He was girded." God in the flesh was stooping to wash dirt off the feet of His weak, sinful disciples. Now that's love!

And that is precisely the kind of love the Lord demands of the rest of His disciples. After His amazing example of self-humiliation, Jesus said, "A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another" (vv. 34, 35).

How had Jesus demonstrated His love for them? By washing their dirty feet; by taking the role of a slave; by doing the distasteful thing, the sacrificial thing. Loving one another is not just feeling little pangs of emotion. It is serving. When you willingly sacrifice what you want for the good of another, when you choose to fill the need of someone instead of satisfying your own need, then you really love (no matter what your emotions may be). That is what God expects.

Q&A with Hank Hanegraaff: "Did Jesus Claim to Be God?"

Articles by Bible Answer Man

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Did Jesus Claim to Be God?
Hank Hanegraaff

"I am the First and the Last. I am the Living One; I was dead, and behold I am alive for ever and ever!" - Revelation 1:17-18

When Jesus came to Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples the mother of all questions, "Who do you say I am?" (Matthew 16:15; Mark 8:29; Luke 9:20). Mormons answer this question by saying that Jesus is the spirit brother of Lucifer; Jehovah's Witnesses answer by saying that Jesus is the archangel Michael; New Agers say Jesus is an avatar or enlightened messenger. Jesus, however, answered by claiming that He was God.

First, Jesus claimed to be the unique Son of God. As a result, the Jewish leaders tried to kill Him because in "calling God his own Father, [Jesus was] making himself equal with God" (John 5:18 NIV). In John 8:58 Jesus went so far as to use the very words by which God revealed Himself to Moses from the burning bush (Exodus 3:14). To the Jews this was the epitome of blasphemy, for they knew that in doing so Jesus was clearly claiming to be God. On yet another occasion, Jesus explicitly told the Jews: " 'I and the Father are one.' Again the Jews picked up stones to stone him, but Jesus said to them, 'I have shown you many great miracles from the Father. For which of these do you stone me?' 'We are not stoning you for any of these,' replied the Jews, 'but for blasphemy, because you, a mere man, claim to be God' " (John 10:30-33).

Furthermore, Jesus made an unmistakable claim to deity before the Chief Priests and the whole Sanhedrin. Caiaphas the High Priest asked him: " 'Are you the Christ, the Son of the Blessed One?' 'I am,' said Jesus. 'And you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of the Mighty One and coming on the clouds of heaven' " (Mark 14:61-62 NIV). A biblically illiterate person might well have missed the import of Jesus' words. Caiaphas and the Council, however, did not. They knew that in saying he was "the Son of Man" who would come "on the clouds of heaven" he was making an overt reference to the Son of Man in Daniel's prophecy (Daniel 7:13-14). In doing so, He was not only claiming to be the preexistent Sovereign of the Universe but also prophesying that He would vindicate His claim by judging the very court that was now condemning Him. Moreover, by combining Daniel's prophecy with David's proclamation in Psalm 110, Jesus was claiming that He would sit upon the throne of Israel's God and share God's very glory. To students of the Old Testament this was the height of "blasphemy," thus "they all condemned him as worthy of death" (Mark 14:64-65).

Finally, Jesus claimed to possess the very attributes of God. For example, He claimed omniscience by telling Peter, "This very night, before the rooster crows, you will disown me three times" (Matthew 26:34); declared omnipotence by not only resurrecting Lazarus (John 11:43) but by raising Himself from the dead (see John 2:19); and professed omnipresence by promising He would be with His disciples "to the very end of the age" (Matthew 28:20). Not only so, but Jesus said to the paralytic in Luke 5:20, "Friend, your sins are forgiven". In doing so, He claimed a prerogative reserved for God alone. In addition, when Thomas worshiped Jesus saying "My Lord and my God!" (John 20:28), Jesus responded with commendation rather than condemnation.

What Credentials Back Up Jesus' Claim to Deity?

"When John heard in prison what Christ was doing, he sent his disciples to ask him, 'Are you the one who was to come, or should we expect someone else?' Jesus replied, 'Go back and report to John what you hear and see; The blind receive sight, the lame walk, those who have leprosy are cured, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, and the good news is preached to the poor.'" - Matthew 11:2-5

Jesus not only claimed to be God but also provided many convincing proofs that he indeed was divine.

First, Jesus demonstrated that he was God in human flesh by manifesting the credential of sinlessness. While the Qur'an exhorts Muhammad to seek forgiveness for his sins, the Bible exonerates Messiah saying Jesus "had no sin" (2 Corinthians 5:21). And this is not a singular statement. John declares, "and in him is no sin" (1 John 3:5), and Peter says Jesus "committed no sin, and no deceit was found in his mouth" (1 Peter 2:22). Jesus himself went so far as to challenge his antagonists asking, "Can any of you prove me guilty of sin?" (John 8:46)

Furthermore, Jesus demonstrated supernatural authority over sickness, the forces of nature, fallen angels, and even death itself. Matthew 4 records that Jesus went throughout Galilee teaching, preaching "and healing every disease and sickness among the people" (v.23). Mark 4 documents Jesus rebuking the wind and the waves saying, "Quiet! Be still!" (v.39). In Luke 4 Jesus encounters a man possessed by an evil spirit and commands the demon to "Come out of him!" (v.35). And in John 4, Jesus tells a royal official whose son was close to death, "Your son will live" (v.50). In fact, the four Gospels record how Jesus demonstrated ultimate power over death through the immutable fact of his resurrection.

Finally, the credentials of Christ's deity are seen in the lives of countless men, women, and children. Each day, people of every tongue and tribe and nation experience the resurrected Christ by repenting of their sins and receiving Jesus as Lord and Savior of their lives. Thus, they not only come to know about Christ evidentially, but experientially Christ becomes more real to them than the very flesh upon their bones.

 

For further study, see Millard J. Erickson, The Word Became Flesh: A Contemporary Incarnational Christology (Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1996); and William Lane Craig, Reasonable Faith: Christian Truth and Apologetics, rev. ed. (Wheaton, Ill.: Crossway Books, 1994), chapters 7 and 8. Log onto the Christian Research Institute’s Web site at www.equip.org.

 

Q&A with Jack Kelley: (Another Psalm 83 Question; What’s To Become Of Libya?; Was The Lord Misleading Us?)

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Send it to questions@gracethrufaith.com

Another Psalm 83 Question

Q. Concerning Psalm 83 — where in this chapter does it specifically mention Judah going to war with these nations?  It’s a prayer by Asaph asking for God’s intervention but I can’t find any actual fighting by Israeli forces.

 

A. From verses 3 and 4 its pretty clear that Israel is the country these enemies are conspiring against. And although the Psalmist doesn’t mention any  direct conflict, God’s typical method in defeating Israel’s enemies was to have them go into battle with supernatural power to defeat the enemy, often with few if any casualties.

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What’s To Become Of Libya?

Q. In the past, you’ve explained what the Bible has to say about the future of Lebanon and Egypt. Can you do the same for Libya?

 

A. Libya is mentioned 7 times in the Bible. Chronologically speaking, The earliest is inGenesis 10:6 identifying its patriarch, Put, as the 3rd son of Ham, a son of Noah. And the latest is in Ezekiel 38:5 where Libya (Put) is identified as part of the Moslem Coalition that will soon invade Israel. After that, there’s no further reference to Libya as a sovereign nation. The only subsequent mention of the Libyan people is that the anti-Christ will have them in submission during the Great Tribulation (Daniel 11:43).

I believe this means that Libya will come through its current crisis with its sovereignty intact and either retain Colonel Qaddafi as its leader or wind up with a replacement who’s just as bad from Israel’s standpoint. Libya will align itself with the Magog coalition and be utterly defeated, to the point where it will no longer be considered a nation.

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Was The Lord Misleading Us?

Q. How should Matt. 6:25-26 be correctly interpreted?

“Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear.  Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?”
 
Massive numbers of wild birds starve to death all over the world, especially during the winter, as well as other undernourished wild animals. Jesus would have known this, of course, and so would his hearers. I would just like your perspective, because I do not like having cognitive dissonance where Christ (and our Father’s provision) is concerned, and I hope you can help me be more comfortable with this saying.

Q. First of all, do you know that birds and animals were dying of starvation in massive numbers during the Lord’s time?  And do you know that He knew this when He was telling us that since God takes care of them he’ll surely take of us?  Because if you’re right, then Jesus was bearing false witness which is a violation of the commandment.  That would make Him a sinner and would disqualify Him from being our redeemer.  And since God made no other plan for our redemption that would mean none of us is saved.

Certainly birds and other animals have finite life spans, but during their lives they do not work for their food and shelter.  The Lord provides these things for them in the Creation. They just have to go out and collect it.  Since He does this for them, He’ll do the same for us, so we don’t have to worry about that.  Does that mean we can lie back and wait for our food to be delivered? No, but neither does it mean that for the birds.  What it means is that if we seek first His Kingdom and His righteousness, the Lord will see to it that we will be able to meet our needs (Matt. 6:33).

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Q&A with Greg Laurie: Can We Really Know God’s Will?

Articles by A New Beginning

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Can We Really Know God’s Will?
Greg Laurie

Does God still speak to people today? Does He actually have a master plan for your life and mine? If so, how do we discover it? How can we know the will of God?

The answer to the first question is yes. God still speaks to people today. But let me also say that after years of walking with the Lord, I have not discovered a foolproof method for knowing the will of God under all circumstances.

However, I have discovered certain principles from the Scripture that, if applied, will better enable you to hear and respond to the voice of God.

The good news is that God does not play hide-and-seek. He wants you to hear His voice even more than you want to hear it. But far too often, we may not like what God is saying and, thus, we will be resistant to it.

The goal is to discover the will of God for our lives and then to walk in it. Here is something to consider: in the long run, God’s will is always better than ours.

I use the term “long run” for a reason, because there are times when we have difficulty understanding why God is doing certain things or why He is not doing certain things.

Remember that God is always looking out for your spiritual and eternal welfare, where we tend to look out for our physical and immediate welfare. What is good now is not necessarily good for eternity, and what is difficult now may be the best thing for eternity.

We tend to look at things in the short-term: What will benefit me now? What is easier for me now? But God looks at eternity, and the ultimate plan of molding and shaping me into the image of Jesus Christ.

I am interested primarily in the physical, while God is interested in the spiritual.

The Bible tells us in 2 Corinthians 4:17–18, “For our present troubles are quite small and won't last very long. Yet they produce for us an immeasurably great glory that will last forever! So we don't look at the troubles we can see right now; rather, we look forward to what we have not yet seen . . . ” (nlt).

So if we want to know the will of God, then we must look for it. And the best place to begin is in the pages of Scripture.

Today, God primarily speaks to us through His Word. Therefore, the Bible is the bedrock of truth that we must measure all other truth by. We must not interpret the Bible in light of contemporary culture; we must interpret contemporary culture in the light of the Bible. It is the absolute.

The Bible is the clear revelation by which we must measure all so-called human revelations. It is the rock of stability by which we measure our fickle human emotions. That way, we know what is right or what is wrong in the light of Scripture.

Everything you need to know about God is found in the Bible. As 2 Timothy 3:16 says, “All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It straightens us out and teaches us to do what is right” (nlt).

Yet so many people today are not taking time for the Word of God. So many people today are not acting and thinking biblically. Instead, they are allowing this world to squeeze them into its mold and are not looking at things in light of what the Bible says.

The only way we will be conversant with the Scripture, however, is by spending time in it in on a daily basis.

Psalm 1 tells us that the blessed, or happy, person meditates in God’s Word day and night. This is something we all need to do in our lives. And as we search the Word of God, He will speak to us. When you read the Bible, you are disciplining and preparing yourself to think and act biblically.

God has given us His Word, but we must look for His will. As you apply the principles of Scripture to your life, pray and ask the Lord to lead you. Nothing is too insignificant or too minute to pray about.

As the Jewish proverb says, it is better to ask the way ten times than to take the wrong road once.

Q&A with J.Vernon McGee: The Downfall of a Nation (Apologetics)

Articles by Thru the Bible

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The Downfall of a Nation
J. Vernon McGee

In the Book of Judges a great principle of government is presented, a principle which is also stated very clearly in the prophecy of Isaiah. All of the subsequent prophets simply bear out and apply this principle which has already been stated. The principle is this: There are three steps in the downfall of a nation. First of all, there is religious apostasy. The second step is moral awfulness. And the third step is political anarchy. These are the three steps by which nations pass off the stage of human history. That has always been the way it has moved. You see, the primary problem never was political anarchy. The primary problem never was moral awfulness. As bad as these are, the root problem goes back to religious or spiritual apostasy, a turning away from the living and true God.

The downfall of a nation begins in idolatry; it begins in turning away from the living and true God. We would like to think that idolatry has gone out of style, that no one today in this country is bowing down to an idol. That, of course, is not true. Many a man today is worshiping the almighty dollar. Many a man worships sex. Many a man worships pleasure. May I say to you, anything that you give yourself to, anything that takes all your time or energy, anything that takes all of you is what you worship. That, my friend, is your god, that is your idol, and that is what God condemns. God says that He is a jealous God. He says, “I made you. I created you. I have redeemed you. And I want you.” When a man turns his back on God, he is doing the worst thing any man can possibly do.

 

But the Lord is in his holy temple: let all the earth keep silence before him. (Habakkuk 2:20)

 

Personally, I believe this looks to the future when the Lord Jesus Christ will come to the earth. When He is in His temple down here, the whole earth will be silent before Him. All of the noise, all of the clamor, all of the protest, all of the confusion will disappear at that time. But it is also true that it applies to today. The reason we are having all these difficulties and problems down here is that, although He is yonder in heaven, although the Lord is in His temple, man does not bow before Him and recognize Him. It would be a wonderful thing if we could just have a week of silence. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if everyone in Washington, D.C., would keep his mouth shut for a week? Wouldn’t it be wonderful if all of us preachers on radio would keep our mouths shut? Wouldn’t it be a wonderful thing if everyone who is doing so much talking would just keep quiet and wait before almighty God?

Just like Habakkuk’s questions, the psalmist asks, “Why do the heathen rage, and the people imagine a vain thing?” (Psalm 2:1). Why all the clamor? Why all the protest? Because they are far from God. Our problem today is a problem of man’s relationship to God. My friend, there is only one alternative, there is only one way out: “The just shall live by his faith” (Psalm 2:4).

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