Avoid the Snare: Safety Against the Trap
Let’s turn now from the snare to where we find safety. “Whoever trusts in the Lord is safe.”
a. Safe from the fear of man. How do we find safety from the fear of man in the trusting of God? First, we must remember that if we trust in the Lord then he is with us. And “if God is for us, who can be against us?” Second, if we trust in the Lord then we will be determined, and the fear of man will have a hard time creeping into our thoughts. We will walk in all his ways, love Him, and serve the Lord our God with all our heart and soul, keeping the commandments and statutes of the Lord. And God’s perfect love casts out fear. Third, we find safety in prayer which drives away our fear. “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.” Fourth, since we find safety in the Lord we are prepared for the worst. We are not surprised when the fiery trial comes to test us. We don’t think it strange. We have trusted in the Lord and have found safety. Fear of man, when it rears its ugly is not surprising. We are ready to take on that dragon and slay it with the word. We don’t have to fall prey to it. We are ready.
b. Safe from the result of men’s anger. We could also read this as we are safe from the consequences of angering or offending people. First, the fear of man is usually not substantiated. It’s an illusion. We have assumed that there will be repercussions for our actions. But often there are none because God restrains our potential persecutors. God stops people from acting against his people. Second, the loss that we might experience at the hands of people will always be less than what we will lose because of our cowardice. We are safe in Christ. If God allows someone to hurt, that pain is less than what you would lose if you disobey Christ. Third, any loss we do experience is done joyfully when we trust the Lord. When the apostles were arrested and beaten they rejoiced because “they were counted worthy to suffer dishonor for the name.” Ultimately, we must remember the words of Jesus, “And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell.”