Jeremiah 38:19 NKJV And Zedekiah the king said to Jeremiah, “I am afraid of the Jews who have defected to the Chaldeans, lest they deliver me into their hand, and they abuse me.”
Jeremiah had advised Zedekiah that if he wanted to himself and his family to survive along with the avoiding the destruction of their city by the Chaldeans then they should surrender. But not only is Zedekiah afraid of the Chaldeans, he’s also afraid of the Jews who he had been extremely cruel to and who had previously surrendered to the Chaldeans. One might think… I don’t blame him, but there’s something we should note. In all these happenings, Zedekiah is only thinking about himself. He was afraid, he would get turned over to the Jews and that he would be abused. Zedekiah was only thinking about himself and not what might be in the best interest of others.
Fear is self-centered. Those living in fear only see life through one perspective; their own. Zedekiah wasn’t concerned about his people, his kingdom, or even his family. When fear gripped him, all he could think of was himself.
The answer to this is love. 1 Corinthians 13:5 tells us that love does not seek its own. The Amplified version says, “…it is not self-seeking.” The Message says love isn’t “me first”. And the Bible in Basic English says, “it takes NO thought for itself (emphasis mine).” Love does not consider itself in situations where others are concerned. It always looks out for their best interest and doesn’t consider the negative impacts it may have on them personally.
Had Zedekiah been living in love, he would not have had to fear. Oh the thoughts of fear probably would have come, but they would have been quickly cast down as love rose up within him. Praise God we have a tremendous advantage over Zedekiah. We have been born-again in the image of our Heavenly Father, who is love (1Jn 4:16).
We are filled with the love of God, a love that cast out and drives fear away (1Jn 4:18). Furthermore, we have the mind of Christ and the Holy Spirit living in us and have not been given a mental disposition or a spirit of fear, but one of power and love and of clarity (2Ti 1:7). Walking in the love of God is what empowers us to live selflessly, putting others first, and free from the fear that comes with self-centeredness. Put on love (Col 3:14) and Fear Not!