Then Sarah lied, saying, “I did not laugh,” because she was afraid. But the Lord said, “No! You did laugh.”
Genesis 18:15 NET
Fear leads us to do the strangest things. It led Sarah to lie to the Lord when he promised she would have a son in her old age. It led Abraham to have his wife say she was his sister, because she was beautiful and the patriarch feared for his life.
Lot struck off for the mountains because he was afraid to stay in the little town of Zoar with his two daughters, after the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah.
Jacob sneaked away from Laban for fear his father-in-law would take back his daughters.
After a stunning success on Mt. Carmel where the prophets of Baal died in defeat, Elijah fled for his life to Beer Sheba in Judah to get away from a queen’s wrath.
Walking on the surface of a stormy lake, Peter let fear of the wind and waves sink him.
The Gerasenes were afraid of a sane man, sitting with his clothes on.
Fear of a harsh master led a servant to bury his one talent in the ground.
Many if not most fears are ungrounded. But when we feed them they move us to faithless behavior.
Of course, there are times when one should be afraid. The appearance of an angel in the New Testament was always a frightening experience.
But fear often betrays a lack of faith. Just as Sarah lied because she could scarcely believe the Lord’s promise and then didn’t want to admit it. Usually, we fear what others might do to us or say about us. We’re afraid of suffering at the hands of hostile people.
Fears are extinguished by considering that the Lord’s promises apply to me as well.
“The Lord delivers and vindicates me!
I fear no one!
The Lord protects my life!
I am afraid of no one!”
“When I am afraid,
I trust in you.
In God ? I boast in his promise ?
in God I trust, I am not afraid.
What can mere men do to me?”
Fear causes us to do strange things.