Fear. It is a chain that imprisons us. It is a muzzle that quiets us. It is a mountain that overwhelms us. Satan recognizes the power of fear and wields this instrument against us daily. Why does he do it? First, it is because Satan hates God. Second, it is because Satan hates God’s purposes.
The chief end of creation is to glorify God. That is why he made us; to see His glory and treasure His glory. How do we see His glory? God shines light into our dark hearts to see His glory in the person of Jesus Christ, His Son. How does He shine this light? His does it by the proclamation of the Gospel, (i.e. the good news of Jesus’ victory over death and sin) (2 Corinthians 4:4-6).
This is where the Church fits in. To those who “get it” (i.e. the light has shown in their hearts or to put it another way, they are born again) are entrusted with this Gospel to pass it on to others (1 Thessalonians 2:4). The Church, therefore, is given the mission to speak the Gospel. When we speak the Gospel to others, the Spirit of God takes it and changes hearts (i.e. born again).
What happens if we are too afraid to speak the Gospel? What happens is that no light shines forth, no eyes are opened, no salvation occurs, people remain chained to sin and chained to death. This is why the devil attempts to scare us into keeping our faith to ourselves. He knows that to stop God’s purposes, you have to stop His people from shining the light of the Gospel.
The early church understood this. This is why they prayed, “And now, Lord, look upon their threats and grant to your servants to continue to speak your word with all boldness,” (Acts 4:29). This is also why Paul asked the Church to pray that he would be without fear in declaring the gospel (Ephesians 6:19-20).
Therefore, this is my prayer for all of you who are my brothers and sisters in Christ:
“Lord God, please give Your people the courage to take Your light to the people in their lives. Lord, give them the strength to proclaim Jesus Christ to the brokenhearted, the spiritually blind, and the spiritually lost. Lord, drive out their fear, so that they will finally tell their spouse, children, friends, and co-workers about the victory over sin and death that has been achieved through the work of Jesus Christ. Lord, make them fearless.”