Three Ways to Overcome Fear

THREE WAYS TO OVERCOME FEAR|Daily Devotion: Day 206

“For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind” (2 Timothy 1:7).

Day 205 of our Devotional was about the need to first conquer your fear, if you are going to win any battle. But some may be wondering: “Ok. I know I should conquer fear. But I constantly deal with fear. I get frightened easily. How do I overcome the fear in my heart?” Today’s message will address this question. Our prayer is that the Lord will set you free from fear. We have identified three ways by which you can overcome fear, for good. Before we go into that, let’s say a thing or two about today’s Scripture reading from 2 Timothy.

During our new birth in Christ, the Lord gives us a new spirit – the spirit of sonship by which we cry “Abba!” (cf. Galatians 4:4-7). That spirit, the Bible says, is not a spirit of fear. The spirit God gives us is a spirit of power, and of love, and of a sound mind. Therefore, as a Christian, you shouldn’t be timid or be dealing with the problem of fear. That said, if fear persists, there may be other things happening which need attention. We can’t go over all the possible causes, but based on what the Scripture teaches, we have identified three ways (not the only ways) one can overcome fear. They are as follows:

  1. Live righteously, and keep your heart from evil. Sin generates and fuels fear. But if you do what is right and keep your heart blameless and your conscience clear, it releases the boldness of God in you. Listen to what the Holy Spirit says in Proverbs 28:1, “The wicked [i.e. sinners] flee when no man pursueth: but the righteous are bold as a lion.” Righteousness before God releases power to overcome fear. See also Proverbs 1:33.

  1. Ask the heavenly Father to fill you with the Holy Spirit. When you are filled with the Holy Spirit, you cannot at the same time be filled with fear. The Holy Spirit in you will make you fearless. But take note: He will not make you reckless. Some people mistake recklessness for Holy Spirit boldness. The Holy Spirit makes you bold, but He also makes you sober and wise. In Luke 11:13, Jesus says that the Father will give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him. So, go ahead and ask.

  1. Pray for boldness. You may face situations which can threaten your peace and sense of security. But you don’t have to be afraid. Ask the Lord to give you a spirit of boldness. He will do it. Facing a difficult situation and being afraid of the situation are two different things. You may not be able to stop a problem from happening, but you certainly can decide not to be afraid. In Acts 4:23-31, the disciples asked God to give them boldness in the face of threats by the Jewish authorities. You, too, can pray for boldness and the Lord will answer you. He wants you to live free from fear.

May the Lord remove every root of fear from your life and cause you to live in His peace. Amen.

For further study: Psalm 91:1-16

The Kingdom Power Within Us

Daily Devotional: Day 199

“Now when He was asked by the Pharisees when the kingdom of God would come, He answered them and said, “The kingdom of God does not come with observation; nor will they say, ‘See here!’ or ‘See there!’ For indeed, the kingdom of God is within you” (Luke 17:20-21).

For several centuries, the Israelites were expecting the Messiah’s arrival. However, they didn’t have the same kind of expectations. Many, especially the religious leadership, expected the Messiah to be a political leader who would establish a physical kingdom and redeem Israel from their political enemies. This will explain why when Herod heard about the birth of Jesus, he panicked – supposing that Jesus would come for his throne (cf. Matthew 2:1-3). Others, however, had more spiritual and religious expectations.

In today’s Bible passage, the Pharisees ask Jesus when the kingdom of God would come. He responds by stating that the kingdom of God does not come with observation. It’s not ‘here!’ or ‘there!’ In other words, God’s kingdom has no geographical parameters. You will see the effects of the kingdom, but the kingdom has no physical structures. It cannot be identified with any nation, kingdom or system in the world.

The kingdom of God spreads its influence through righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit (cf. Romans 14:17) manifested by believers – children of the kingdom. When Jesus stood before Pilate, He minced no words about the nature of His kingdom, “My kingdom is not of this world” (cf. Matthew 18:36), He declared. Speaking to the Pharisees, Jesus added, “the kingdom of God is within you.” To most Israelites of His day, Jesus’ definition of the kingdom was disappointing and unsatisfactory. They expected a Messiah who would give them something more than an invisible kingdom. The kind of ‘kingdom’ Jesus offered wasn’t good enough. No wonder the majority rejected Him.

For us today, Jesus’ message about the kingdom is no different. He wants us to have the right expectations and knowledge about how the kingdom of God works. Jesus says that the kingdom of God is within us. That makes us special people endowed with supernatural and royal power. It would, therefore, be a mistake for Christians to seek God’s kingdom in the physical world and its systems.

It would further be erroneous to look for God’s kingdom in a physical location, including even the church building. God does not dwell in a temple made with human hands (cf. Acts 7:47-50). Jesus is not in a room, box or tabernacle made with human hands. Rather, He lives in us. His presence, His power and His Kingdom, is within us who make up the Body of Christ. We don’t need to look far for deliverance. Let’s learn – through faith – to recognize Jesus’ power, grace and deliverance at work within us. And let’s spread the influence of His kingdom wherever we go. 

God bless you!

For further study: 1 Peter 2:1-10

Operating in the Power of Your Supernatural Birth

Daily Devotional: Day 196

“But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his [Jesus’] name: Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God” (John 1:12-13).

In life, it is natural to acquire the traits of those who gave birth to you. As a Christian – born of the Spirit, you acquire the traits of the Spirit. Today’s Scripture is about the supernatural power that comes with being born of God. The Bible is careful to point out that we are not born of blood, nor of the will of man. Instead, it says, we are born of God. Because we believed in Jesus and on His Name, God gave us power to become His children. Who you are born of says a lot about your dignity, your excellence, your nobility, your connections, your power, your privileges and your responsibilities.

 With this new birth comes the supernatural power which gives you victory over satan, sin, the world, fear and all the forces of darkness. You are imbued with the Spirit of God to walk on this earth as an offspring of Deity, a true child of God Almighty. You couldn’t wish for a greater power or a greater honor. Thus, you possess in your spirit the traits of your Heavenly Father.

This means God has high expectations of you. He expects you to excel in displaying His character of love, mercy, forgiveness, compassion, patience, boldness and righteousness. You need to get rid of the mindset of defeat, the mindset of failure, the mindset of insecurity, and put on the mindset of your divine Father. Your supernatural authority is based on the fact that you are born of the Most High God. You, therefore, need to stop thinking like a weakling. The forces of darkness must fear you.

Because you are born of the Spirit, be determined to appropriate the supernatural power of your supernatural birth. Be determined to walk according to the Father’s purposes for your life outlined in the Holy Scriptures. You need to stop talking yourself out of victory and start talking yourself into the victory of the sons of God. 

You are born of God to display on earth the excellencies of your FatherDon’t take this lightly. It is the highest honor a creature could hope for – to be born of God. First, God created you in His image and likeness. That was glorious enough. But He didn’t stop there. Through faith in Christ and the power of the Holy Spirit, the Father has given you a new birth. You couldn’t wish for a better life and a better destiny.

This is why you should be diligent about how you conduct yourself, how you talk, how you dress, how you react to situations, how you behave, the choices you make, the friends you make, the entertainment you participate in, etc. You are created in Christ as an excellent being. You can’t afford to live like someone who isn’t born of God. 

In Christ Jesus, you are no ordinary creature. Change your thinking and your behavior, and conform them to the image of God’s children portrayed in the Scriptures. Embrace your supernatural origin. Experience the difference.

May the Lord grant you a spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of Him (Ephesians 1:17). Amen.

For further study: Colossians 1:1-29

Worship the Lord Alone

Daily Devotional: Day 43

“And the devil said unto him, All this power will I give thee, and the glory of them: for that is delivered unto me; and to whomsoever I will I give it. If thou therefore wilt worship me, all shall be thine” (Luke 4:6-7, KJV)

Satan’s goal hasn’t changed; he wants to be worshiped. He’s determined to usurp the throne of God and get people to worship him, in place of the one true God. And he can get people to worship him directly or indirectly, consciously or unconsciously. Today’s scripture recalls Jesus’ victory over the Devil’s temptations during his forty-day fast. In this instance, the Devil showed Jesus all the kingdoms of the world in a moment. Then, observe what happens next. He promises to give Jesus all the power and glory of the world, on one condition: If Jesus would worship him. The Greek word for worship used here is proskuneo. It means, among other things, to fall prostrate, to bow or kneel in reverence. Jesus, of course, rejected Satan’s suggestion.

However, the Enemy’s statement reveals much about his intentions. He controls the glory and power of the world. The words “glory” and “power” used in this context refer, not to the physical universe or creation, but the systems of the world: the materialistic and consumerist culture, the exaltation of self, the insatiable craving for attention and fame, greed, corrupt financial systems, the unholy glamor of the entertainment industry, ungodly systems of education, systems of injustice and oppression, anti-Christ ideologies, false religions, and evil political powers who together dominate and influence world affairs. Through the glory and power of these systems, Satan rules the world in unrighteousness.

The Devil gets many people to compromise their conscience as well as their moral and religious values for the sake of worldly power and the approval of people. Jesus knew this trap and avoided it. Even today, some “Christians” have fallen for the charm of worldly power and glory. But the truth is, when you choose worldly power and glamor over the truth of God’s Word, you become a worshiper of power and glory. And the moment you worship power and glory, you inevitably become a worshiper of the Devil. This is what Satan wanted Jesus to do.

Recall, moreover, what happened in the Garden of Eden. Satan enticed Eve with a supposed power to make her and Adam like God. Given the choice between power and God, Eve chose power. Adam, too, when presented with the choice between Eve and God’s truth, chose his wife, i.e. he chose to obey his wife rather than obey the commandment of God his Maker. To overcome this and other temptations of the flesh, we must follow Jesus’ counsel, “But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added to you” (Matthew 6:33).

Pray:

Dear Father, you’re all I want. In Christ, you have given me your own glorious life and power. In the Name of Jesus, I worship you alone and I refuse to bow to anything that is not you. Amen.

For further study: Daniel 3:1-30

Speak Right, Reap Right

Daily Devotional: Day 34

“From the fruit of his mouth a man is satisfied; he is satisfied by the yield of his lips. Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruits” (Proverbs 18:20-21, RSV).

Once again, the Bible unveils heavenly truths for our edification.  A lot can be said about today’s passage, but for now, let’s focus on just one aspect, i.e. consistency in our words. The Bible says that we shall be satisfied by the fruit of our mouth and the yield of our lips. This means God has put in your mouth the ability to produce fruit that will bring you satisfaction. As the earth yields crops of different kinds, so your mouth can yield or produce a harvest of good things for your satisfaction. Note that when the Bible speaks of fruit, it presupposes the existence of seeds. The Bible further declares that death and life are in the power of the tongue. Whose tongue? Yours and mine. With your tongue you can speak life, and with the same tongue you can speak death. See how much power the Lord has given to your words! This is profound divine truth. If you need to pause and ponder over it before you continue, do so.

When you speak, you’re planting seeds that will return to you with a harvest. You see, every seed produces fruit of its kind. Our God is a God of law and divine principles. So, if you sow apple seeds, for example, expect to reap apple fruit. It’s the same with your words. They carry weight. An important part of using your tongue to your advantage, as the Father intended, is to be consistent. This means, your words must not fluctuate between speaking doubt and faith, deception and truth, or fear and boldness. It’s important that you consistently speak faith, blessings and truth. Train yourself to mean what you say, and to say what you mean. If you have a habit of saying things you don’t mean or of deceiving, you’ll confuse your own spirit. Some people speak faith when it suits them, and other times, they’ll conveniently speak doubt and fear and all kinds of negative things which corrupt the power and efficacy of their words. Learn from Jesus. He was consistent in his words, always speaking truth and consistently confessing faith in his Father. God respects consistency. Speak right, and reap right.

Pray:

Daddy, thank you for giving my words power to yield fruit for my satisfaction. Your love for me amazes me. Teach me to be consistent in my speech. Let faith and truth proceed from my mouth. And as I sow the right seeds, grant me a harvest of healing, deliverance, provision, peace and fullness of joy. Thank you for hearing me. In the Name of Jesus. Amen. 

For further study: Matthew 12:33-37