TODAY’S BIBLE READING:

Genesis 31:17–32:12
Matthew 10:24–11:6
Psalm 13:1-6
Proverbs 3:16-18

TODAY’S BIBLE VERSE(S):

Matthew 10:28 (CSB) “Don’t fear those who kill the body but are not able to kill the soul; rather, fear him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.”

REFLECTIONS ON TODAY’S BIBLE VERSE(S):

Jesus’ words in our Verse for Today are powerful and counter-intuitive.

We think it would be very appropriate to fear someone who was aiming a gun at us and threatening to pull the trigger. However, we think that we should never, ever fear God.

But, Jesus tells us that such a belief has things backwards.

Matthew 10:28 (CSB) “Don’t fear those who kill the body but are not able to kill the soul; rather, fear him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.”

Jesus tells us: “Don’t fear people. Fear God.”

But, the words that come from Jesus’ mouth aren’t simply the tame words that appear in Scripture so often: “the fear of the Lord.” Instead, Jesus gives us a very clear reason we are to fear the God of Heaven.

“fear him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.”

Jesus tells us that we are to fear God on the basis of the fact that He is the Ultimate Judge who will sentence people to a fiery hell forever (Revelation 20:11-15). The torturous pain of that place cannot be fathomed this side of eternity but we are given more than enough information about it in Scripture to make it clear that it needs to be avoided at all costs.

Matthew 5:29-30 (CSB) “If your right eye causes you to sin, gouge it out and throw it away. For it is better that you lose one of the parts of your body than for your whole body to be thrown into hell. And if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. For it is better that you lose one of the parts of your body than for your whole body to go into hell.”

Question: So what does fearing God look like given the context of Jesus’ words in our Verses for Today?

Answer: Trust in Jesus as your Lord and Savior. Get into His Word, read it, seek to understand it, and do it, quickly repenting of any failure to comply with it.

Some final thoughts:

  • The only way we receive the gift of forgiveness and eternal life is to transfer our trust – quit trusting in ourselves and trust in Jesus to make us right in God’s eyes (John 3:16; John 14:6).
  • We do not work to get saved and we do not work to stay saved. But if we are truly saved, it will show up in our thoughts and actions (Ephesians 2:8-10). We will become more like Jesus as God works with us to accomplish this task (Philippians 2:12-13).
  • If you want to do an internal investigation to see if you are truly saved, then read 1 John. The Apostle John wrote it so that people could be determine whether or not they have eternal life (1 John 5:13). As you read through the book, you will realize that it deals with mindsets and behaviors. Clearly, John understood that if we are truly saved, it will affect how we think and how we act.

Friend, this is no small matter. Jesus told us to fear the One who has the authority and power to condemn people to a fiery hell forever. So, be sure that you are saved.

If you chase after Jesus in this life, He won’t chase you down on the Day of Judgment.