What Does the Bible Say
Freedom From Fear in Troubled Times?
By Betty Miller
2 Timothy 1:7: "For God hath not given us the
spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind."
We live in an hour in the earth that the Bible speaks of as the "last
days." Because we are in the end times we know that according to prophecy it will be
a time of great tribulation and trouble. 2 Timothy 3:1 says,
"This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come." More
scripture describing the end times is spoken of by Jesus himself in these verses:
Matthew 24: 3 And as he sat upon the mount of Olives, the
disciples came unto him privately, saying, Tell us, when shall these things be? and what
shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world?
4 And Jesus answered and said unto them, Take heed that no man deceive you.
5 For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many.
6 And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all
these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet.
7 For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be
famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places.
8 All these are the beginning of sorrows.
9 Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you: and ye shall be
hated of all nations for my name's sake.
10 And then shall many be offended, and shall betray one another, and shall hate one
11 And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many.
12 And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold.
13 But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.
14 And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto
all nations; and then shall the end come.
This is certainly a description of our present world. However, notice in verse
6 the Lord told us this "...see that you are not troubled." There
is only one way we can be without fear in a world of turmoil, hatred, war, and
uncertainty. The way to do this is to trust the One who told us not to be troubled or
fearful. Only through Christ's power can we walk in peace and safety. We must give our
lives completely to the Lord and yield to His will as to what He wants us to do, where He
wants us to live, what He wants us to sell or give away and what we are to do with our
time. This is a total commitment to give God first place of our time, money, careers,
family and future.
The Word of God tells us, "He shall not be afraid of evil tidings: his
heart is fixed, trusting in the Lord'' (Psalm 112:7). Fear is the opposite of
trust. The devil continually tries to get us to be fearful. The Bible says in Luke
21:26, "Men's hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which
are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken.'' Many people
shall not overcome fear, but be overcome by it. As Christians, we are not to be fearful
but are to trust in the Lord. Should Satan come against us with his lies and fear, we are
to turn to God and ask that the fear be removed. People's fears are many. Some fear death,
others are afraid of getting cancer, afraid of losing their loved ones, afraid of the
house burning down, afraid of having car wrecks or afraid of flying in airplanes, afraid
of the future. Others are tormented with the fear of the dark, fear of being molested or
fear of staying alone. Fear is a horrible monster no matter what form it takes. After we
seek God for the removal of our fear, we then should quote the Word of God concerning that
subject to the devil. "For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of
power, and of love, and of a sound mind'' (2Timothy 1:7).
As we listen to the Holy Spirit, He usually speaks something positive for us to do. It
could be we are to sing to the Lord, pray in the spirit or read the Bible. If we obey, the
Holy Spirit will then drive the "spirit of fear'' from us. If we cannot get free and
find we are in bondage to an evil spirit of fear, we may need to have this evil spirit
"cast out.'' If we are simply overcoming a weakness of fear in our flesh, submitting
to God and resisting the devil will accomplish the victory. We should not be discouraged
if we do not get the victory the first time. It sometimes takes several bouts with the
devil to win the round. If we lose one battle, it does not mean we are losing the war. The
Lord will bring the victory if we are determined and have chosen to trust God and not to
This same approach applied to any weakness will bring us success. The place to begin is
with a decision of the will. A decision allowed us to come into the
kingdom of God. We decided to accept the Lord's forgiveness and reconciliation.
At the time of this decision we were "born anew'' and received the gift of life in
Christ. This was all accomplished by faith in God's Word. The same method will work in
overcoming any weakness in our lives. We must first decide we want to be an overcomer.
Then the power of God will perform this in us as we trust Him by faith to do so. We must
not be double-minded once we set our course, since a double- minded man receives nothing. "But
let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea
driven with the wind and tossed. For let not that man think that he shall receive any
thing of the Lord. A double minded man is unstable in all his ways.'' (James 1:6-8). True
faith rests in the victory of Jesus.
When we come to the Lord, we are "re-born'' and our life with God begins with a
clean slate. "Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old
things are passed away; behold, all things are become new'' (2 Corinthians 5:17).
Sometimes past sins and mistakes cause us to fear the future or fear exposure of our
former deeds. The Lord wants the pain of our past erased so we can function without the
hurt of those wounds. We should not dig up the past unless the Holy Spirit specifically
sees the need to touch an area with His healing, and only then if that healing requires
facing the past. With His love He will remove the hurt and fear of those days.
However, if we have hurt people it would be in order to ask their forgiveness. We
should also try to right the wrong if by doing so it would not bring the involved party
more hurt. As Christians we should restore to those we have defrauded and publicly
apologize if we have failed a group or brought reproach upon them. We should confess the
truth in we have lied or gossiped. When the Lord shows us how we have hurt others we
should always seek to make amends. If we have stolen something, we should restore it.
Sweeping things under the rug will never bring recovery and restoration. It will only lead
to more fear and deception. The only way we can walk in truth is to replace the lie with
the truth of God's Word.
Emotional stress and fear can also cause physical sickness. Inner emotional healing is
sometimes the key to receiving a physical healing. We can be suffering with ulcers because
we have not forgiven someone, or arthritis can possibly be the result of a bitter and
prideful spirit. Heart problems can occur because of fear and stress. The Lord begins our
healing from the inside out. Once we have been cleansed in our hearts and souls, then the
body will also respond and experience healing. When we prosper in our souls, then we will
also prosper in our bodies. The Bible says, "Beloved, I wish above all things
that thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospereth'' (3 John 2).
If we are overwhelmed by depression or hopelessness or fear and we are unable to pray
or read God's Word, we can ask the Holy Spirit to speak to someone to pray for us. The
Lord knows that many times we are too weak to pray and that we need the body of Christ,
the church. They can stand and pray with us until we get the victory. We need not feel
embarrassed to ask others to pray. We need each other. It is also helpful to have someone
pray the prayer of agreement with you when trying to overcome a weakness or fear. This
will bring strength to your decision to overcome in the areas needed. "Again
I say unto you, That if two of you shall agree on earth as touching any thing that they
shall ask, it shall be done for them of my Father which is in heaven'' (Matthew 18:19). This
is a wonderful agreement that should be utilized by husbands and wives. The wife can agree
that her husband's weakness will be overcome in Christ, while the husband can make the
same agreement for his wife. Satan tries to divide all relationships with critical
thoughts and words about each other's weaknesses.
One of the greatest fears people are fighting at this time is fear of financial loss
and fear of the future since many of the prophets of God are declaring times of trouble
and tribulation in the U.S.A. and the world. The Lord knew the hour we would be living in
and we can rest assured He has a plan of protection and provision for all of His committed
people. What we must all do is to seek the Lord with our whole heart and get His plan for
our individual lives since these are perilous times. The only safe place for any of us is
in the will of God! If we are in His will we will find His provision and direction. He
wants to speak to us. However, we must be close to Him to hear. In the physical world the
farther away you are in distance from someone the harder time you have in being able to
hear them. The same principle applies to the spirit world. Hearing God is a matter of
Psalm 91:15-16: "He shall call upon me, and I will answer him: I will be
with him in trouble; I will deliver him, and honour him. With long life will I satisfy
him, and show him my salvation."
Reviewing how to overcome fear or any negative emotion, we must:
(1) Ask the Lord to remove it
(2) Quote the Word of God.
(3) Listen to the Holy Spirit.
(4) Obey His guidance.
(5) Praise Him for the answer.
This is only a simple outline but many find it helpful when needing a guideline to
overcome faults and failures and fears. We also have additional material on this subject
in our BIBLE ANSWERS
link. Look under the subjects of "Pressure" and "Stress."
This article was taken from the Overcoming
Life Digest (September/October Issue); click here to view Digest