The Bible, of course, never guarantees that fearful things won’t happen to us. God doesn’t promise a “safe,” tragedy-free life. Friends do forsake us. Illnesses do strike. Family members do die. Bosses do fire workers. But God through Isaiah does guarantee that amid our understandable fears, He loves us, is for us, is with us, and will help and uphold us. Nothing will ever happen to us outside of His sovereign, wise, and perfect will.
Fear is among the most common problems we face. We live in a fallen world filled with uncertainties. The types of fear we face seem endless: fear of failure, the future, rejection, being alone, conflict, intimacy, death, job loss, sickness, and a host of other realities. When you add imagined possibilities, the list truly has no limit.
Moreover, the consequences can be ruinous. Fear robs us of the joy, peace, and confidence we should have in Christ. It fixates our thoughts on us instead of God. It drains our physical and emotional energy. It keeps us from sharing Jesus with others and serving one another. Fear cripples the Christian.
The Bible, however, brings good news: God’s Word has much to say about fear. Wherever you find fearful people in Scripture you repeatedly find God’s response, “Do not fear!” or “Don’t be afraid!” In fact, it’s the Bible’s most frequent command.
But easier said than done, right? That’s why God doesn’t leave the matter as a mere command. He supplies solid reasons not to fear and He calls us by faith to apply them.
God’s Answer in Isaiah 41:8-10
There are many places we can go in Scripture to find answers to the problem of fear. One of my favorites is Isaiah 41:8-10, a concise passage packed with potent help for our fears:
8 “But you, O Israel, my servant, Jacob, whom I have chosen, you descendants of Abraham my friend,
9 I took you from the ends of the earth, from its farthest corners I called you.
I said, ‘You are my servant’; I have chosen you and have not rejected you.
10 So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”
How can we as followers of Christ fight against our fears?
First, we can fight fear by remembering that we are God’s sons and daughters and by living out that identity each day. God engages His people in verses 8-9 by reminding us of who—better, whose—we are and what He has done to rescue and redeem us.