Has fear controlled your life? It is devastating how the enemy controls people through what they fear – even some Christians.
Some of the ways that fear manifests itself include:
Let’s take a closer look at the danger of a fearful spirit through the story of Job.
We will cover:
Job and the Spirit of Fear
Many of us know how the enemy attacked Job, a Godly man in the Old Testament.
The enemy destroyed Job’s livestock, killed his children, and struck his body with boils (see Job chapters 1-2).
Job suffered in every natural category that concerns human beings: Health, money, and relationships.
But did you know that the enemy knew where to attack Job specifically before he attacked?
After these disastrous events happened to Job, the man revealed through his words that he had a spirit of fear with him before the attack:
For the thing I greatly feared has come upon me,– Job 3:25
And what I dreaded has happened to me.”
Think about that.
Job said that he “greatly feared” and “dreaded” what happened before it happened, even though God had blessed him greatly in natural things.
This is not a casual type of fear, but persistent fear with which Job lived.
I believe if fear and dread haunted Job, then it is likely that he spoke words consistent with fear and dread.
While the enemy has no ability to read minds, I believe he is a great listener and observer of human nature.
I think the enemy may have heard Job’s words and used them to discern where to attack Job in ways that would hurt him the most.
Because Job lived before Jesus came on the scene, he had no power to overcome the spirit of fear in his life.
However, as Believers in Jesus today, we do have that power (and much more)!
The Truth about the Spirit of Fear
As disciples of Christ, we are not doomed as victims of the spirit of fear.
The Bible has much to say about the spirit of fear. One of my favorite scriptures regarding fear is 2 Timothy 1:7:
For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.
This scripture tells us two truths about fear:
- The spirit of fear does not come from God, but from the enemy.
- Fear is outnumbered 3-to-1!
In the following Bible study, discover how fear is outnumbered, the things people typically fear and what to do about them from a Biblical perspective.
How Fear is Outnumbered
Fear is outnumbered 3-to-1 according to 2 Timothy 1:7. Power, love, and a sound mind combats fear in the following ways:
As believers in Jesus, we have power through God’s spirit within us according to Romans 8:11:
But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you.
– Romans 8:11
This is the same life-giving Spirit that raised Jesus from the dead! When we feel weak, we can call upon the Lord’s power. By faith, we receive His strength to do what we can’t do on our own. In that way, He gets the glory in our victory, not us.
We did not do anything to deserve God’s love. However, He chose us to love us as an act of His goodness and grace. He loved us while we were sinners! That fact amazes me.
Because the Lord loves us, He has good plans for us – better than we have for ourselves.
When we obey God, we demonstrate our trust in Him and belief in His love:
Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us.– Romans 5:5
God’s perfect love casts out fear.
If you doubt God’s love and rebel against Him through your daily actions, that is an inroad the enemy can use to torment you with fear and lies.
When a structure is defined as ”sound,” that means it is firm, intact, and stable.
A sound mind is one that is undivided. It is the opposite of being double-minded.
For “who has known the mind of the Lord that he may instruct Him?” But we have the mind of Christ.– 1 Corinthians 2:16
Jesus’ mind was established firmly upon fulfilling the Father’s will in His life.
With that sound mind, He was able to establish wise priorities and make Godly decisions.
With that same ability, we have no need to fear. Instead, we can have confidence that we can face life challenges with God’s help.
What do people fear?
Now that we know that fear is outnumbered, let’s discuss three situations people tend to fear, generating anxiety, worry, or procrastination.
You’ll also discover the Biblical mindset toward handling these situations with confidence:
Fear of conflict
While we don’t seek conflict with others, it does happen. After all, people can experience the same situation but respond to it differently, depending on their perspective.
As believers in Jesus, we are called to resolve conflicts in a Godly manner. Rather than ”winning,” our focus is to demonstrate the love of Christ toward others.
Within ourselves, we affirm our intention to seek the highest good and to pursue peace as an ambassador of Christ.
Peace is Spiritual warfare against the enemy! Seek God’s wisdom to resolve the conflict in peace and forgive offenses quickly:
“For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.– Matthew 6:14-15
Fear of denying the flesh
As believers, we are called to walk in the Spirit and not fulfill the lust of the flesh. Our renewed spirit is the real us, not the flesh.
However, denying the flesh can hurt!
When a choice must be made between following what the Lord wants versus following what our flesh wants, then our choice is clear:
For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit, the things of the Spirit. For to be carnally minded is death, but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. Because the carnal mind is enmity against God; for it is not subject to the law of God, nor indeed can be. So then, those who are in the flesh cannot please God.– Romans 8:5-8
Consider that Jesus suffered in His body more than anyone ever has. Considering Him gives us a reality check when the fear of deprivation arises:
For consider Him who endured such hostility from sinners against Himself, lest you become weary and discouraged in your souls. You have not yet resisted to bloodshed, striving against sin.”– Hebrews 12:3-4
If my flesh complains about me saying ”no” to myself in a certain matter, I will remind myself, ”Come on! You are not going to shed blood through refusing this.”
That’s what I call a reality check!
In addition, the Holy Spirit within us gives us comfort in the midst of suffering.
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.– 2 Corinthians 1:3-4
We recognize that God is glorified as we reflect His character in the choices we make and through comforting others through the comfort we have received.
Fear of death
The enemy uses the fear of death to keep people in bondage according to Hebrews 2:14-16:
“Inasmuch then as the children have partaken of flesh and blood, He Himself likewise shared in the same, that through death He might destroy him who had the power of death, that is, the devil, and release those who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage.”– Hebrews 2:14-16
We have no need to fear death because we have life in Christ!
As we face our fears with the Lord’s help, we come to know and trust Him more:
And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.– John 17:3
The above scripture is the purpose of life! Coming to know the Lord more through our daily life experiences is priceless.
My prayer for all who suffer from the spirit of fear is that the Lord’s perfect love casts out that fear.
Fear involves torment and hell is a place of torment. People who allow fear (cowardice) to stop them from submitting to Jesus as their Lord will have their part in the lake of fire:
But the cowardly, unbelieving, abominable, murderers, sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death.”– Revelation 21:8
Therefore, the person who lives in fear lives in their own private hell on Earth now and will experience torment in hell eternally.
But the Lord does not want that. He desires all people be saved and come to the knowledge of the truth. Jesus came to set the captives free!
May the Lord perfect us in His love so that we can be everything the Lord calls us to be and do everything God calls us to do.
Be Blessed with Health, Healing, and Wholeness,
Author of the Take Back Your Temple program
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“Prayer for Weight Loss”
May God bless you mightily for the little reminders you’ve shared of how we can overcome fear through Jesus.
You are welcome, Sydney – we all need those reminders. All glory to God!
I have lived a life plaughed by too much fear…..This Month i am dedicated the days to pray and break away from the Spirit of Fear and all its fruits…WOuld you help pray with/for me?
I will join you in prayer, Richard – remember fear is outnumbered 3-to-1 by Power, Love, and a Sound Mind. I pray the Lord give you a spirit of wisdom and revelation of Him in this matter.
Ty this was me for a long time but now I’m learning to trust God more and give Him the glory for all He has done and going to do.
Awesome, Renee – coming to know and trust God in our daily journey is the way to life!
Thank you for this sound and biblical teaching about fear and how to overcome it. I have been fearing that I might have another bout of clinical depression, but I am trusting God to keep me well. I thank Him for a sound mind!
Amen, Marsha – I am agreeing with you on that!
This was a great article, thank you! I really wanted to read about how fear can generate procrastination, though, I have a problem with types of procrastination and was wondering how it worked together? Thank you!
Hi Lidia – thanks for that feedback! I updated the article to include a link to a related article on procrastination called “Outsmarting the Time Thief.” However I think I will write an article about procrastination in more depth from a Biblical perspective. Once again, thanks for the idea!
What a blessing I stumbled up on this morning – as I have been experiencing high anxiety for the first time. I appreciate this post very much. Praises be to God for speaking through you to me. Thank you.
You are welcome, Coreen! May the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, guard your heart and mind by Christ Jesus 🙂
Such a great post! May we all embrace God’s power, love and sound mind and overcome fear/anxiety! God bless you, your blog and its readers!
Thank you, Erin! I receive that prayer and pray the Lord’s peace upon you as well 🙂
Thank you for pointing to the Truth of God’s word. He alone can break us free from fear. Praise him!
Amen – He deserves the praise, Michele!