“But the cowardly, unbelieving, abominable, murderers, sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death.” – Revelation 21:8
My goodness, the scripture above is a sobering revelation from heaven’s throne room. This verse really convicted me when it comes to dealing with fear and rejecting passivity. When I first read Revelation 21:8 it caused me to think, “Lord I understand the condemnation of the murderers, sexually immoral, sorcerers, liars etc., but why the cowardly?”. I assumed the cowardly were those who are weak or disadvantaged and associated them with people that should be protected and even cared for. Then the Lord highlighted the very next word in the verse, “unbelieving”. This coward-est is found when a person who claims they are a child of God but will not step out on faith under any circumstances. The person who walks through life like this allows his or her flesh to rule them, in return they cannot bear Godly fruit.
This mentality is rooted in fear. The fear of man, situations, circumstances, more than the fear of God. The coward in this context has allowed doubt to consume him. All of us have doubted God in one way or another and the Lord has grace and forgiveness in this area; however, this should not become a consistent pattern throughout the life of a Christian. Take a moment and think about how you feel personally when someone doubts your ability to accomplish something. When someone says you cannot do something that you have pledged to do, are they thinking highly of you? The answer is clearly no. Now you being made in the image of God ought to understand that the Lord feels the same way. We have feelings because God made us in His image. To doubt Him is to doubt His power, wisdom, provision, and promises. In short it is to doubt that He is truly Lord over your life and wants the best for you. This cowardly unbelief separates you from Him, and that brings about many repercussions.
The coward is extremely good at making excuses as to why not to do something, in turn making him lazy. Proverbs 26:13 says, “A sluggards says, ‘There’s a lion in the road, a fierce lion roaming the streets!’”. In other words fear is their excuse to lay back down. Something I need to work on is being overly cautious (fear in disguise) when I know God is nudging me to step out on faith. This WILL cause us to miss God’s will for our lives. You see God can’t use a coward to do anything for Him, because it won’t get done.
It sounds harsh, but when we truly have intimacy with our Lord there really is nothing to fear. Jesus told us not to let our hearts be troubled and God’s word says, that He has not given us the spirit of fear. Believing and trusting in God is not an option, it is a command. If anyone is struggling in the area of unbelief we shouldn’t be discouraged. All we have to do is ask for His help. In Mark 9:24 the demon possessed boy’s father yelled “Lord, I believe, help my unbelief!” In other words complete my faith. If we have any unbelief in our hearts all we have to do is ask Jesus for help. He is faithful and we would be surprised how much boldness will be given to us.
“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” – Philippians 4:13
We are living in a time where the spirit of fear has been unleashed on the whole of society. Many of us are bound to fear and not walking in faith. I admit there have been so many instances where I ran from God’s calling on my life, or I just played it safe because I wasn’t willing to trust Him fully. However through His grace alone I am realizing nothing on this earth can stop us from what we are called to do, if we just believe. He is preparing us for a great work. We either believe Philippians 4:13 or we don’t. It’s not enough to be called, let’s rise up and be the chosen.
May 5, 2020 at 8:04 pm
Marc, this was a great read! And undoubtedly a timely and necessary message. Keep ‘em coming.