Thoughts on Today's Verse...
"Fear of the LORD" is one of the great themes of the Old Testament. The phrase is particularly hard to translate, especially in light of the repeated message of the Bible to "fear not" and John's reminder that "perfect love casts out all fear." It means more than "hold God in reverence." Generally, "fear of the LORD" means that we remember our place in the order of things. We know we are deeply loved by our holy Father in heaven. We recognize that we are weak and sinful in comparison and are saved by God's mercy and grace. We acknowledge that his majesty and holiness are far beyond us and that we pale in significance before God. We come to God acknowledging our need for him and our unworthiness to demand anything from him. The incredible reality is that when we approach God with this sense of awe and profound respect, he in turn welcomes us with open arms and brings us close. (See Isaiah 57:15)
Holy and Righteous Father, God Almighty, thank you for your mercy, grace, and forgiveness. Thank you for your love, faithfulness, and justice. I come to you on my knees, recognizing that you are holy, majestic, awesome in power, and righteous in all that you do. Without your grace and the gift of your Spirit, I know I could not come into your presence with such boldness. Righteous Father, forgive me for my sins and empower me to be a person of integrity and grace. In Jesus' name I pray. Amen.