Fear and trembling

“Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling; for it is God who works in you both to will and to do for His good pleasure. Do all things without complaining and disputing, that you may become blameless and harmless, children of God without fault in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world, holding fast the word of life, so that I may rejoice in the day of Christ that I have not run in vain or labored in vain. Yes, and if I am being poured out as a drink offering on the sacrifice and service of your faith, I am glad and rejoice with you all. For the same reason you also be glad and rejoice with me.”
‭‭Philippians‬ ‭2:12-18‬ ‭NKJV‬‬

Fear and trembling

I send out a lot of messages each week, little morsels of encouragement, letting people I am praying for, know that someone is concerned for them and is aware that they matter. Periodically, I receive a message from one who has not replied in what they feel to be a timely manner. I inform them that the vast majority of people I send messages to, don’t reply at all. In fact there are some who never use messenger, and have no idea that I am lifting them up to the Lord.

I am not fulfilling the calling of God upon me for the approval of men, but for the glory of God. He has placed this desire in me to serve Him from the quiet of my chair, and I do so with great passion and delight. I take the mission seriously, working out my salvation with fear and trembling.

It is not a salvation leading to justification, for that was accomplished by Jesus on the cross, but one leading to sanctification, as the Lord refines me, that I be an effective ambassador, representing Jesus as I go out into a sick and dying world.

The world we live in is a crucible, a place of extreme heat where we are tried and refined as gold. Just as we are being pressed in from all sides, we must continue to represent our Savior. As I read Philippians chapter two this morning, I was reminded of the journey that the followers of Jesus have embarked. We are here for a purpose, at the good pleasure of God.

Though we are surrounded with broken and sinful people, we are called to be righteous. We are lights in this increasing dark world.

““You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do they light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.”
Matthew 5:14-16 NKJV

The forces of the evil one are working diligently to snuff out that light, and can be difficult to resist the efforts of those sent by Satan. But we have the power of the Holy Spirit in us, the Helper and the knowledge that our Lord is greater. Let us not fear or be dismayed.

“You are of God, little children, and have overcome them, because He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world.”
I John 4:4 NKJV

Like Paul, writer of Philippians, many of us will feel the fiery trials of this world, as we go and tell of Jesus, presenting the Good News to all who will hear. To stand for Jesus, righteously, is to be made a target of all who hate God. Most who oppose you will do so to trip you up, to damage your testimony, casting doubt on anything you may have to say.

But we must be steadfast.

We must remember that we are not fulfilling our calling for the approval of others, but to the glory of God, who even now is working out the future. Those who work out their salvation, their sanctification, with fear and trembling, will rule and reign with Jesus.

Brothers and sisters, let us bear down, defeating our fleshly desires, as the time is truly short. As I have drawn closer to the Lord through His word, prayer, and meditation, I have seen my desires move from the base to the heavenly, as old sin struggles have fallen away. I sense the winding down of the age, and the rise of what is to come.

Let us work out our salvation with fear and trembling, being ever mindful that we will all stand in some kind of judgement. For those who are the born again, it will be the Bema Seat, for the lost, it will be the Great White throne. Now is the time to work hard, to drive the flesh into submission. We are in the race of the a lifetime, seeking victory in eternity.

“Do you not know that those who run in a race all run, but one receives the prize? Run in such a way that you may obtain it. And everyone who competes for the prize is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a perishable crown, but we for an imperishable crown. Therefore I run thus: not with uncertainty. Thus I fight: not as one who beats the air. But I discipline my body and bring it into subjection, lest, when I have preached to others, I myself should become disqualified.”
I Corinthians 9:24-27 NKJV

I don’t want to be disqualified.

Granted to be a worshiper before the throne of God is divine, I desire the greater thing, to rule and reign with Jesus. May we be consumed with winning the race of faith. May our sole desire be to please the Lord, fulfilling our calling, and spreading the Gospel.

Join me, my people in working, that we be found faithful, and eligible form that upward call in Christ Jesus.

“Not that I have already attained, or am already perfected; but I press on, that I may lay hold of that for which Christ Jesus has also laid hold of me. Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.”
Philippians 3:12-14 NKJV

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2 thoughts on “Fear and trembling

  1. What a great challenge today! Yes, we press on. Philippians two is one of my favorite 10 chapters in the Bible. I also thought of this one, as I was encouraged by you today my friend.

    Hebrews 12:1

    Jesus, Founder and Perfecter of Our Faith

    [1] Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us,


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