Bible Study: There’s No Fear In Love – 1 John 4:18

Song Of The Week

Song: Starts and Ends by Hillsong UNITED

Mood: Surrender

Tastes: Sweet

1 John 4:18 – When Fear Becomes Dread

“There is no fear in love [dread does not exist]. But perfect (complete, full-grown) love drives out fear, because fear involves [the expectation of divine] punishment, so the one who is afraid [of God’s judgment] is not perfected in love [has not grown into a sufficient understanding of God’s love].”

– 1 John 4:18 AMP

“There is no fear in love” is an often misinterpreted claim. When people hear this, they think to themselves if I truly have the love of God, then I wouldn’t be afraid

It’s a fallacy, though. Emotions can’t be controlled. If they could, heartbreak wouldn’t exist unless your a sadist; no one would voluntarily choose to be heartbroken. 

The fruits of our emotions are, however, under our control. If you choose to dwell on your pains, you’ll become sour. On the other hand, if you choose to focus on the good things, you’re letting God’s light shine through your cracks. 

You can’t control fear, but you can control the fruits of it. 

Please don’t misinterpret what I’m saying as “smiling through your hurts”. Grieving is a necessary step to getting over loss/heartbreak. Crying and asking tough questions are what grows us, molds us, into better people, people of substance. The ups and downs fill in the colors of one’s personality. They’re what makes us beautifully human.

Albeit grief is necessary, sourness is addictive. Have you ever felt comfortable living in a habit of self-loathing? Maybe it’s because you’ve been subject to abuse all your life or maybe it’s because it’s to keep you from disappointment. Either way, excessively pacing through your valleys when you can walk through them creates dysfunctional comfort. 

So, when God says it’s time to let go, let go.

Fear involves the expectation of divine punishment

What does that mean? 

If fear is the product of expectations, then what was gonna happen if we get rid of these expectations. Will we be further along than we are are now? Or does it not make a difference because these are just theoretical presumptions that have no real world impact? 

Perhaps we probably would be further along then we are right now if we didn’t let the expectation of these abstract fear have their way in us. Many a times in fact it is the expectations that hinders us from achieving what we are ultimately supposed to do, ergo creating real world impact.

It is only human for us to build these ideas of negative outcomes that could happen like Oh they’re not gonna like me! or You’re not going to get a job and you’re going to be homeless or You gonna die alone

There’s something I’ve learnt from scripture that empowers me when I feel this way. Don’t get me wrong, I still feel this way often. In fact, it’s probably everyday. 

Therefore, I tell myself this everyday: Jesus died for you.

When I began my journey with Christ, I had no clue what that meant. Now, after journeying for a few years, I now have complete understanding of 0.1% of what that means. 

Essentially, it means that Jesus has overcome death for us. 

Tying back to fear, most times we fear something because of the possibility of a consequence. But you need to know that the worst thing that can happen and the worst thing that people can do to you is to kill you. People are afraid of death. No matter how much we say just kill me please jokingly, or grant me the sweet release of death, all of us innately fears death because we fear the unknown. Fear of death stems from the brain’s inability to predict and comprehend what happens in death. It’s like trying to think of a new color.

Death is to separate your soul from your body. But there’s a catch that people often go about their lives not noticing. We know someone where immune to death because we know somebody who has saved us from the depths of Sheol. 

Despite of death, when you say to yourself, with wholeheartedness, that Jesus died for me, there’s no need to fear death because the perfector of faith has protected us from whatever there is. 

It’s like how children when they get scared they run to their parents because they know that it is whatever you find a refuge somewhere where they can feel safe. But there’s a difference when people say what if you drive’s face because dread it is different. There is a crippling kind of you, one that will consume you swallow you too you are at your wits end

Call To Action 

When you fear something, tell yourself Jesus died for you. Let it remind you that you’re immune to this world because you have a greater treasure in Heaven.

God bless you and stop letting fear hold you down!

– Tobias

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