~ Today’s Scripture Art and mini Bible study were designed to help you write God’s Word on your heart as you learn more about God saying “Fear Not.” ~
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Since my church is reading through the Bible this year – and we started in Genesis – it got me wondering …
When was the very first time that God said “Fear not?”
Did He say it to Adam and Eve? Nope.
Did He say it to Noah? Incredibly, no. In my mind, Noah had plenty of potential fears. More than most! Just read Genesis 6-8 and see if you would have had fears. Yet he always quickly obeyed and apparently never once had to be told not to fear.
Genesis 6:22 (ESV): Noah did this; he did all that God commanded him.
Genesis 6:9b (ESV): Noah was a righteous man, blameless in his generation. Noah walked with God.
Maybe obedience and walking with God are the key to having no fear.
We can learn a lot from Noah.
Hebrews 11:7 (NASB): By faith Noah, being warned by God about things not yet seen, in reverence prepared an ark for the salvation of his household, by which he condemned the world, and became an heir of the righteousness which is according to faith.
But that’s not where I was supposed to be going today!
Today we are hunting for the first occurrence of God saying “Do not fear.”
The answer is …
Genesis 15:1 (NKJV): After these things the word of the Lord came to Abram in a vision, saying, “Do not be afraid, Abram. I am your shield, your exceedingly great reward.”
Maybe you can relate to Abram (later renamed Abraham) better than Noah.
Abraham’s life was mixed with both immediate obedience (Genesis 12:1-4) as well as questions (Genesis 15:7-8), doubts (Genesis 17:17), and fears (Genesis 12:11-13).
Yet, despite the mixture, Abraham was approved through his faith.
Hebrews 11:17-40 (CSB): By faith Abraham, when he was tested, offered up Isaac. He received the promises and yet he was offering his one and only son, […] All these were approved through their faith, but they did not receive what was promised, since God had provided something better for us, so that they would not be made perfect without us.
There’s hope for us too!
Let’s take a closer look at this first occurrence of “Fear not.”
The word “shield” in this verse is Strong’s H4043 which means an actual physical use-in-a-battle-type shield. (That’s my paraphrase of the definition, obviously.) This word occurs in the Old Testament 63 times and many of those times are similar to these …
2 Chronicles 12:10 (ESV): and King Rehoboam made in their place shields of bronze and committed them to the hands of the officers of the guard, who kept the door of the king’s house.
Nehemiah 4:16 (ESV): From that day on, half of my servants worked on construction, and half held the spears, shields, bows, and coats of mail. And the leaders stood behind the whole house of Judah,
To me, the fact that it’s talking about an actual, physical take-into-battle shield makes it all the more cool to read verses like these that use the exact same word …
Psalm 3:3 (ESV): But you, O LORD, are a shield about me, my glory, and the lifter of my head.
Psalm 28:7 (CSB): The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and I am helped. Therefore my heart celebrates, and I give thanks to him with my song.
Psalm 84:11 (NASB): For the LORD God is a sun and shield; The LORD gives grace and glory; No good thing does He withhold from those who walk uprightly.
Can you think of a better shield? Bronze? Gold?
What can be better than God Himself? He will be our shield when – according to these verses – we trust in Him, take refuge in Him, and walk uprightly.
Hmm. Sound a little like Noah?
Today’s “Fear not” was said to Abram. Was it only meant for him?
I’ve got good news …
Psalm 18:30 (ESV): This God—his way is perfect; the word of the LORD proves true; he is a shield for all those who take refuge in him.
Maybe you are in a battle right now.
Have you picked up your Shield?
Ephesians 6:16 (ESV): In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one;
Don’t let it just sit there.
Psalm 18:39a (ESV): For you equipped me with strength for the battle;
Open the Word and take refuge in Him.
Psalm 18:2 (ESV): The LORD is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer, my God, my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.
He is our actual take-to-battle shield.
And there is no need to fear the battle, because we have victory in Him.
1 Corinthians 15:57 (ESV): But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.
*My prayer for you is … that this blog will inspire you to open your Bible every single day to seek God’s face and write His Word on your heart – because HE’S the key to lasting heart change!
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