Rabbi Schneider — Do Not Be Afraid
Shalom Yedidim and God bless you, beloved ones. My name's Rabbi Schneider. We are in the midst of a series, perhaps one of the most important series that I've ever preached on this broadcast. I'm calling it, Do Not Be Afraid.
As our launching pad, we are moving out of Joshua, chapter number 1, verse 9. The Lord says to Joshua: Be strong and courageous and do not be afraid.
The Hebrew word there for fear in Joshua, 1:9 , is the Hebrew word aratz. And the Lord is telling Joshua, don't be terrified, don't dread. I want you to be strong and courageous. You see, Joshua was looking at a massive army that wanted to kill him.
He was looking at hostile enemies that were very dangerous in the natural, and yet Joshua had a God that said to him, don't look at these people and fear them. Be strong and courageous, and do not be afraid.
You see, beloved, you and I also live in a hostile world. We're also surrounded by hostile forces just like Joshua was. We see death and danger lurking on every side. The Lord said, a thousand may falter at your side, ten thousand at your right hand, but don't be afraid.
God wants to strengthen us, beloved, today to overcome fear. In fact, if we want to go far in the Lord, we must overcome fear, because fear will keep us from our inheritance. Just like it kept the children of Israel from their inheritance; they didn't enter the Promised Land because they feared.
So too, beloved, you and I will not enter into the rest, the peace, the love, the Shalom, the victory, the power that God has for us unless we declare war on fear in our own life. You see, ever since Adam sinned in the garden, man's chief enemy is fear.
The first words out of Adam's mouth when he sinned was I was afraid. And if you look at your life, I think most of you will be honest and say, yes the biggest enemy in my life has been fear. And there's only one way to overcome fear, beloved, and that's faith in the Word of God.
It's faith in the Lord. This is what Jesus taught us when Peter and the disciples were in the boat and they were moving through, in the boat with Jesus, and all of a sudden a fierce storm came. And the Bible says the storm was so great that the boat began to fill up with water.
The boat was in danger of sinking. Yet here was Jesus somehow asleep. They awakened Jesus and they say, don't you care that we're perishing? And Jesus rebukes them and says why were you afraid? Why are you timid?
And then he speaks to the wind, and he speaks to the sea, and it becomes calm. In this we learn that the remedy for fear, beloved, is faith. The Bible says this is the victory that has overcome the world, our faith. And this faith, beloved, that the Lord is calling us to exercise, it's not a passive faith. It's an active faith.