Terry R. Baughman
“That through death He might destroy him who had the power of death, that is, the devil, and release those who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage” (Hebrews 2:14–15).
Everyone is afraid of something. Whether real or imagined, rational or unlikely, there are some things that evoke a feeling of dread or outright fear in our psyche. The patriarch Job gave voice to his phobia when he lamented, “For the thing I greatly feared has come upon me, And what I dreaded has happened to me” (Job 3:25).
We often turn to the Book of Job during times of trouble or when dealing with incredible losses. He is one who turned to God and found solace when tragedy had stripped him of all that he possessed and robbed him of children. As bad as our situation is we have probably not suffered as much as Job did. An incredibly wealthy man with land, crops, livestock, and ten children, Job and his wife lost all they had in a single day.
Some of our greatest fears are never realized and all our worry is in vain. Yet, we go through life plagued with unfounded fear. From the Psalms we can find an answer to our phobias, “God is our refuge and strength, A very present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, Even though the earth be removed, And though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea; Though its waters roar and be troubled, Though the mountains shake with its swelling” (Psalm 46: 1–3).
God is our refuge and strength when the very earth is moved beneath our feet. Our whole world may be in turmoil but we find help in our God. Another Psalm gives us confidence to trust only in Him, “The Lord is my light and my salvation; Whom shall I fear? The Lord is the strength of my life; Of whom shall I be afraid?” (Psalm 27:1).
“The name of the Lord is a strong tower; The righteous run to it and are safe” (Proverbs 18:10). His name and its authority give us the hope of salvation. There is no other name that holds that promise. Peter declared, “Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved” (Acts 4:12).
The Gospel of Jesus Christ was proclaimed in power after His resurrection from the dead. Paul recognized that through the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ all the claims of this message have authority. Paul argued, “But if there is no resurrection of the dead, then Christ is not risen. And if Christ is not risen, then our preaching is empty and your faith is also empty.” … “But now Christ is risen from the dead, and has become the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep” (1 Corinthians 15:13–14, 20).
In the lyrics of Overcome, by Elevation Worship, “And for every fear there's an empty grave, for the risen One has overcome.” Bring every fear to the empty tomb. As we witness the evidence of the resurrection we come to understand, there is no reason to be afraid. He is risen. He’s alive. The Risen One has Overcome!
Jesus died so we can live. Jesus experienced the pain of death and the tremors of suffering so we could find hope, healing, and salvation. In the empty tomb there is plenty of room for all of our fears. “Casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you” (1 Peter 5:7).
“Thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Corinthians 15:57 NIV).