376. Don’t Be Turned From Your Purpose

484142_18_e9135bHebrews 11:27 NKJV  By faith he forsook Egypt, not fearing the wrath of the king; for he endured as seeing Him who is invisible.
Hebrews 11:27 BBE  By faith he went out of Egypt, not being turned from his purpose by fear of the wrath of the king; for he kept on his way, as seeing him who is unseen.

You don’t have to allow fear to turn you from what you began in faith.  Moses led the Children of Israel out of Egypt by faith.  Immediately after making starting the journey the thoughts rushed in.  Even if Moses himself didn’t have personal thoughts of fear, he heard the fears of the people. “What if Pharaoh changes his mind?” “How will we survive in the wilderness?” “It would have been better if we never left Egypt.”  But Moses was not turned from his purpose, even when it looked like they might succumb to the wrath of the Pharaoh when he led his army against the Children of Israel.  Moses stayed steady, endured, and kept on his way.

No matter what God directed journey you are on, there is an enemy that will try to turn you from the purpose God has given you.  His number one weapon is fear.  This verse gives us 3 great points to help us stay free from fear.

  1. Live by faith. “By faith he went out…”  Whether you are going to work, visiting the doctor, or playing a game with the kids, do it in faith.  Pray often and remind yourself of the Word, then trust in the Lord and walk in the Word.  Romans 1:17.
  2. Stay your course. “…not being turned from his purpose by fear… for he kept on his way” The opportunity to fear and doubt will come.  Keep your mind stayed on the Word and Spirit of God because you trust Him. Isaiah 26:3 tells us that doing so will keep us in His perfect peace.
  3. Look unto Jesus. “…as seeing him who is unseen.” Moses looked unto God and the plan and purpose that God had for him and His people.  We look, unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.” Hebrews 12:2.  Looking unto Him, keeps us in constant contact with Him and watching for any course correction or new instructions along the way that will keep us steady and in our lane.

We don’t have to be derailed by fear.  Like Moses we are to begin in faith, knowing the Word and Character of God.  We keep our minds on the promises of His Word and our eyes on the victory set before us.  We keep our eyes on Him and follow His leading which keeps us in our lane and out of the ditch.  Don’t be turned from your purpose. Live by faith, stay your course, look unto Jesus, and Fear Not.


375. You Don’t Have to Stand Alone

left-outHebrews 11:23 NKJV  By faith Moses, when he was born, was hidden three months by his parents, because they saw he was a beautiful child; and they were not afraid of the king’s command.




“Be brave enough to accept the help of others.” – Melba Colgrove

In this verse we see the faith of Moses’ parents being commended.  In the face of a horrifying situation, where Pharaoh had decreed that any Israelite boy born should be turned over to the Egyptian soldiers and thrown into the Nile River to drown or be eaten by crocodiles, they refused to follow the command and risked the lives of not only themselves but of their other two children by hiding Moses for the first 3 months of his life.  I love that this verse commends both of them saying, “By faith Moses, …was hidden three months by his parents, because they saw… and they were not afraid.”  It is easier to stand against fearful circumstances when you don’t do it alone.

The Bible is not short on verses that talk about the power of agreement & unity.  Matthew 18:19-20, Ecclesiastes 4:12, Amos 3:3, James 5:14-16 ,1 Peter 3:7, and so many more all point to this truth.  We see the principle throughout the Scripture in so many examples of faith, covenant, and even the power of agreement of the ungodly seen with the Tower of Babel.  One of the reasons that agreement is so powerful is that it encourages the other party.  When we stand in agreement with one another we encourage each other in the things of God and our resolve to stand and trust God even in the most terrifying of situations is bolstered.

Besides that, the teamwork that was necessary to effectively hide a cooing and crying child and misdirect or distract the soldiers that are conducting routine searches of all the houses couldn’t not have been managed by any one person.  It required a team to be alert, vigilant, and working together to do so.  Together they persevered and preserved the life of their son.

Isolation is one of the strategies the Enemy using to keep people bound by fear.  He will try to get you to think that you are alone.  Sometimes this comes through the form of other fears like the fear of the opinions of others or the fear of failure, which will keep you from being honest about a situation or accepting help.  I’ve even seen people use “faith” as an excuse to struggle through their fears alone.  That’s just not Bible people.

The lord created us for relationship.  We are children of a relational God (Father, Son, Holy Spirit).  You don’t have to go through fearful situations alone.  Some of them you simply can’t make it through alone.  The good news is you don’t have to.  There are people who will come along side and together, like the parents of Moses, will agree with you, encourage you, and even make the battle their own and fight alongside of you.  You don’t have to stand alone.  Will you be brave enough to accept the help of others?

370. Don’t Give in to Fear

53035-cheer-up-its-fridayPhilippians 1:27-28 NKJV  Only let your conduct be worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear of your affairs, that you stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel,  (28)  and not in any way terrified by your adversaries, which is to them a proof of perdition, but to you of salvation, and that from God.

Philippians 1:28 NLT  Don’t be intimidated in any way by your enemies. This will be a sign to them that they are going to be destroyed, but that you are going to be saved, even by God Himself.

Paul knew that the character, consistency, and commitment of a Christian to the Gospel of Christ served as a sign to the unbeliever that either makes them very angry or contrite in heart.  We cannot become terrified or intimidated by those that want would desire to silence the Church.  To be silenced by fear diminished our capacity to be the examples and light to the world that we are called to be. 

Paul wrote to the Philippians to encourage them to during a time they were experiencing considerable opposition from both Jews and the pagans of the region.  Yet Paul encouraged them to remain steady in the midst of the persecution.  Steady in their character and steady in their commitment to live for and share the reality of Jesus.  In essence he told them, “Keep living and keep sharing your faith.  Be kind and full of the compassion of Christ to everyone, even though there are many how oppose the Gospel there.  Your consistency in character, and commitment to Christ is making them wonder.  It is a sign that Jesus is alive.”

That is still true for us.  Don’t give in to fear.  Keep preaching Jesus and loving people.  It is a sign that makes them wonder and the world desperately needs us to stay steady and be the people of character committed to Christ and the glorious truth of the Gospel that we are called to be.


369. Find Yourself a Hero

heroPhilippians 1:12-14 NKJV  But I want you to know, brethren, that the things which happened to me have actually turned out for the furtherance of the gospel,  (13)  so that it has become evident to the whole palace guard, and to all the rest, that my chains are in Christ;  (14)  and most of the brethren in the Lord, having become confident by my chains, are much more bold to speak the word without fear.

The way you respond to fearful situation will either encourage and embolden others or it will cause them to be discouraged, become fearful, and feel hopeless.  Paul’s response to the persecution, imprisonment, and threats he faced emboldened other believers around him.  It also served to prove the sincerity and conviction of his heart to all including unbelievers.

Paul wrote the Philippians to encourage them to be bold in the midst of the persecution and pressures they were facing.  Besides reminding them of the Word, he also told them of his fearful situation, how he was standing strong in the midst of it and how many other believers around him were becoming increasingly bold to live and share the Gospel of Jesus without fear.  The sincere example of faith and the unwavering commitment to Jesus that Paul provided inspired others to live fearlessly.

We should all have heroes and examples that we can look up to whenever we are tempted to become afraid.  People that withstood great adversity, overcame huge hurdles, or who boldly with civility stood up for what they believed in.  There have been a great number of amazing people like this: Rosa Parks, Martin Luther King Jr., Betsy & Corrie Ten Boom, Jim Abbott, Thomas Edison, Albert Einstein, Apostle Paul, Daniel, etc…. Sometimes simply finding someone living or dead that has overcome a terrifying situation or is courageously standing in the midst of one is all we need to embolden our hearts to courageously press on.  Whatever may begin terrifying you, find someone who overcame something similar and let their story motivate you to write your own.  Then stand tall and courageous with sincerity and conviction as you begin to encourage and embolden those who are now being inspired by you to live fearless.


368. Work Unto the Lord

fearEphesians 6:5-7 NKJV  Bondservants, be obedient to those who are your masters according to the flesh, with fear and trembling, in sincerity of heart, as to Christ;  (6)  not with eyeservice, as men-pleasers, but as bondservants of Christ, doing the will of God from the heart,  (7)  with goodwill doing service, as to the Lord, and not to men,

A little bit of a twist on fear today as we look at this verse.  Although the Apostle Paul was addressing the attitudes of bondservants or slaves toward their masters the principles are applicable to our attitudes toward our employers or managers/team leaders on the job.  Paul’s command was to listen and follow the instructions or job assignments of our bosses, with fear & trembling “as unto Christ (KJV)”.  He isn’t telling us to literally cower in fear of those we work for but instead to treat them with the same dignity and respect that we would in service to Jesus.  Though this Scripture isn’t directly about living free from fear, applying the principle conveyed, may help you avoid the fear of being fired.

Paul begins by saying, “be obedient… in sincerity of heart”.  In other words, listen intently with an ear to sincerely apply and follow their instructions or vision for your company or department.  Paul thought this was so important he wrote it again to the Colossians (Col 3:22).  Then he writes, “not with eyeservies, as men-pleasers…”  This means don’t be the kind of employee that only works when the boss is watching.  Instead, Paul writes that we should work unto the Glory of God as if Jesus were your supervisor, with a good attitude doing what you are expected to do.

Too many employees are self-centered and looking only to complete as little as possible.  Others don’t mind working but believe that their way of doing things is better than their bosses.  It might be.  Maintaining the right attitude and proposing a new method or asking if you can do something differently is ok.  However, if they still want you to do it their way smile and say, “yes sir/ma’am.”  Then do the task or fulfill your duties to the best of your abilities in a way that would Glorify God.

If we fulfilled all of the duties on our job description as if they were assigned by Jesus, Himself (and you know you’d so things not in your job description for the Lord too), and looked for opportunities to be a blessing and sincere help to our managers, supervisors, or employers; your probably not going to have to fear getting fired.  Instead, you’ll probably get promoted.  Don’t fear getting fired, work as unto the Lord.  P.S. even if you were ultimately laid off, verse 8 tells us that if we served as unto the Lord, He will reward us for our good work.

Ephesians 6:8 GNB  Remember that the Lord will reward each of us, whether slave or free, for the good work we do.


367. Be a Person of Principle

oft-lending-principlesGalatians 4:11 NKJV  I am afraid for you, lest I have labored for you in vain.

Principles are a precious.  They guide us through uncertainty, charting the course that we will follow.  Without them we are at the whim of the pressures of life as well as people.  The Apostle Paul feared that the Galatians had forsaken the Christian principles he had taught them after hearing that many were replacing their pagan feasts and traditions with Jewish ones.  They had previously followed dead rituals and now some were being convinced to leave the freedom in Christ to follow now dead practices in Judaism that have now been done away with through the fulfillment of the law by Christ Jesus.

We all have our principles tested and are pressured to bend or break them, how we respond matters.  It’s important to note that there are preferences and principles.  Preferences I can life without, principles I cannot.  It’s also good to note that although I believe all of my principles would be great for everybody, not all of my principles are matters of Scripture so someone else might not agree or follow the same ones, but we all need some.

As a parent, I pray I never fear that my children have forsaken the principles I’ve worked so hard to impart to them.  As a pastor, I know Paul’s pain having poured into people only to see them rationalize, and justify sinful behavior.  In the political realm principles even affect how people vote, often choosing personal privileges and desires over the principles they profess.  How do we avoid fearing that our children and loved ones will back off of the principles we cherish and long to pass on to them?  We live them.

Paul wrote in verse 12, “Brethren, I urge you to become like me….”  Paul not only told them how to live, but he provided an example and challenged them to live like him.  Jesus, himself, is recorded 21 times challenging his disciples to “follow (Him)”.  Principles will keep you from fearing and they also keep others from fearing too.  Living them openly will help others do the same.

“I have principles and I am not going to be forced to compromise them.” –  Alan Sugar

“Laws and principles are not for the times when there is no temptation: they are for such moments as this, when body and soul rise in mutiny against their rigour … If at my convenience I might break them, what would be their worth?” – Charlotte Brontë, Jane Eyre

“A people that values its privileges above its principles soon loses both.” – Dwight D. Eisenhower



Elisabeth Elliot said, “Fear arises when we imagine that everything depends on us.”


366. Enosiophobia – The Fear of Criticism

fear-of-criticism-1050x600Galatians 2:12 NLT  When he first arrived, he ate with the Gentile Christians, who were not circumcised. But afterward, when some friends of James came, Peter wouldn’t eat with the Gentiles anymore. He was afraid of criticism from these people who insisted on the necessity of circumcision.

Although you’ve probably never heard of enosiophobia before, you’ve most likely experience it to some degree multiple times in life.  Enosiophobia is the fear of criticism.  It is also a term used to define the fear of having committed the unpardonable sin, but we’re not going to touch one at least not today.

Here in Galatians chapter 2, Paul wrote that Peter fell prey to the fear of being criticized by Jewish Christians for eating with Gentile Christians.  This also means that he wasn’t enjoying any carnitas or BLT sandwiched either.  Paul wrote that even Barnabas gave way to the pressure and succumbed to this fear.  Paul was probably shocked that Peter, the Apostle who was convinced that the wall of separation between the Jew & Gentile had been torn down saying, “Can anyone forbid water, that these should not be baptized who have received the Holy Spirit just as we have?” after the Lord gave spoke to him in a vision 3 times and then he witnessed Cornelius and his household be baptized in the Holy Spirit speaking in tongues and magnifying God (Acts 10:1-23, 46-47).  He was undoubtedly further shocked that Barnabas, who he had previously traveled with to many Gentile nations proclaiming the Gospel of Christ and seeing thousands of gentiles saved and filled with the Holy Spirit.  This is what fear will do.  Fear will drive you act in ways you wouldn’t normally and do things you don’t believe is right.

The fear of criticism has a horrible effect on the lives of believers.  It causes us to not be “straightforward about the truth of the Gospel” (Galatians 2:14).  We must guard against it.

Nobody enjoys being criticized.  It’s not fun.  But the fear of criticism will try to keep you from speaking up regarding the truth & pressure you to avoid taking action and do the right thing in the face of opposition at work, at home, or in the supermarket.  Like Peter, Barnabas and those with them, it will cause you to violate your conscience and be carried away with hypocrisy.  So what can we do?

Paul gave us some good things to remember that will insulate us against enosiophobia and empower us to be courageous in the face of this fear.  He told us to remember, “I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.”  In essence he told us instead of fearing what others will say about you; Remember who you are, remember whose you are, & remember the price that was paid.