Truth or Fear

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So you have not received a spirit that makes you fearful slaves.

Fear is a feeling brought on by a perceived danger or threat, which can cause a change in behavior.  This is the case when we look at Pilate’s role in the crucifixion of Jesus.  Jesus was brought before Pilate by the Jewish leaders and he had the power to set Jesus free or have him crucified.  Although Pilate found Jesus not guilty, he decided to have him crucified.

So you have not received a spirit that makes you fearful slaves. Instead, you received God’s Spirit when he adopted you as his own children. Now we call him, “Abba, Father.”  Romans 8:15

 John 18:28-19:16 tells how Pilate wanted to set Jesus free, but the Jewish leaders kept pressuring him to have Jesus killed. Roman law did not allow for the Jewish authorities to carry out capital punishment.  They needed Pilate, but when he refused the Jewish leaders threatened to go to the emperor and accuse him of high treason. Pilate now faced a decision that will change his life.  Does he set free this man who he knows to be innocent, or does he succumb to the fear of losing his high government position and decide to crucify Jesus?  Pilate acts out of fear, turns away from the truth and hands Jesus over to his soldiers to be killed.

So how do we face our fears? We cannot do it in our own strength or power, as Pilate tried, but by God’s Spirit (Zechariah 4:6), which we receive when we accept Him as our Savior.  The Spirit guides us so that we can make decisions based not on fear, but on truth.

Reflect on a time where you made a decision based on fear instead of truth.  What were the effects of that decision?  Pray that your “Abba Father” will help you to stand strong in the face of fear.  Study Psalm 37 to better understand God’s protection.

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