Fear Has Its Place
Happy is the man that feareth alway. (Proverbs 28:14)
The fear of the Lord is the beginning and the foundation of all true religion. Without a solemn awe and
reverence of God there is no foothold for the more brilliant virtues. He whose soul does not worship
will never live in holiness.
He is happy who feels a jealous fear of doing wrong. Holy fear looks not only before it leaps, but even
before it moves. It is afraid of error, afraid of neglecting duty, afraid of committing sin. It fears ill
company, loose talk, and questionable policy, This does not make a man wretched, but it brings him
happiness. The watchful sentinel is happier than the soldier who sleeps at his post. He who foreseeth
evil and escapes it is happier than he who walks carelessly on and is destroyed.
Fear of God is a quiet grace which leads a man along a choice road, of which it is written, “No lion
shall be there, neither shall any ravenous beast go up thereon.” Fear of the very appearance of evil is
a purifying principle, which enables a man, through the power of the Holy Spirit, to keep his garments
unspotted from the world. Solomon had tried both worldliness and holy fear: in the one he found
vanity, in the other happiness. Let us not repeat his trial but abide by his verdict.
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