Scripture Passage: 2 Timothy 1:6-8
Fear is an instinct that God has put into us to help protect and preserve us and our loved ones. But the Bible warns us about the damage, destruction, and debilitation of a “spirit of fear.”
Adrian Rogers says, “Legitimate fear is like a thunderstorm: lightning flashes, thunder rolls, water pours down. But then it passes and the sun shines again. The spirit of fear is like constant darkness: a drizzle, a fog that you live in.”
Paul’s instruction in 2 Timothy shows us how to handle our fear. 2 Timothy 1:6 says, “Therefore I remind you to stir up the gift of God which is in you through the laying on of my hands.” Because fear caused Timothy to forget who he was in Christ, Paul had to remind Timothy of how gifted he was and what God had done in him.
When we focus on fear rather than on God, we leave our gifts and abilities unused, buried, and forgotten. And, like Timothy, many of us are afraid to fail, so we never try; we project our failures upon ourselves, so we give up.
In 2 Timothy 1:7, Paul reveals the deliverance from the spirit of fear, which is a spirit of faith: “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.”
God has endued us with power over fear, through the Holy Spirit of God. If we understand that, we have greater strength than our foes, there is no need to be afraid. And through the Holy Spirit, we have been given everything we need.
We are perfectly loved by the God who is in control; truly knowing that eliminates all dread. His perfect love casts out fear (See 1 John 4:18.).
Finally, we’ve been given a spirit of sound mind. Many times, we are afraid, not on the basis of reality, but because the deceiver has made us afraid. God has given us a spirit of discernment and wise discretion. With a sound mind, we can look at every fear in the clear light of His Word.
If you have been neutralized by a spirit of fear, remember that you have the power of the Holy Spirit within you. You also have His perfect love lavished upon you. Adrian Rogers says, “The man who can kneel before God can stand before anyone else.”