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The Fear of Man Brings a Snare
Pro 29:25 the fear of man bringeth a snare but whoso putteth his trust in lord shall be safe
Pro 29:25 It is dangerous to be concerned with what others think of you, but if you trust the LORD, you are safe. (GNB)
This is what the Bible says and if we want to avoid the snares that can trap us we need to have a hearing ear.
The Nature of a Snare
A snare is a noose and by design leaves no way of escape; it completely encircles its victim. If a snare partially encircled its victim or had a small opening then there would be a way of escape but a snare is not designed to free its victim. A snare is designed by the spirit of Darkness and his purpose is to beguile and then control the souls of men. He knows how to hunt, how to entrap, and, if we listen to him, he knows how to encircle and then change our life.
The fear of man has to do with voluntarily placing ownership of our life into the hands of men. To be accepted we change our behavior which leads to a life of serving others; we serve whom we fear. It is our creation, not men, that validates our worth and it is our creation that speaks to God's ownership of our life. It is the Cross that validates our relationship with God. God is our Father and we are to please Him first, not men. To be healthy, we must see ourselves with eyes of faith - that God is our strength and He will empower us to live healthy and overcoming lives. If we constantly seek to please men then our life will be a life of service to men, not God. We will not be able to live out a healthy and overcoming faith.
A Snare Paralyzes our Life
A snare, by design, paralyzes for it stops all routes of escape. God will say "do what you can do", but fear will not allow a person to do what they can do for they are ever in fear of failure or in fear of what people will think. God will say "trust Me", but fear will not allow trust in God. The priority of fear is not trust but the opinion of others. God says, "I will strengthen you", but fear responds with "what if you don't and what if I fail, and then what will people think?
A Snare Encircles Our Faith
Faith cannot work if encircled by the fear of man. If we alter our behavior and our thinking because we are afraid of what people will think, then we alter our faith. Faith demands that we listen to God but the fear demands that we please men. If we listen to fear rather than God then we will have been caught and our faith brought to nothing.
A Snare Encircles our Prayer
If we are emotionally dependent upon what people think, then we will not be able to pray effectively. We will not accept God's answers because fear does not want His answers. God can give an answer but fear will not allow us to receive or act on the answer. If fear is in control then the Lord's answers to our prayers will be ignored. If fear is in control then we can receive answers only if there is no risk. If fear is in control then our faith is weak, our prayers are weak, and the answers to prayer will be weak. God's Word says to pray in the Spirit and according to His will. But if our soul is snared by the fear of man then we will not be able to pray in the Spirit, and we will not be able to pray God's will.
Fear Bewitches the Soul
There is a dark anointing in fear. Its power is in its message, and if we listen, it will beguile by changing us on the inside. We cannot underestimate the power of fear and what it is capable of doing. Its message reflects the purpose of spiritual darkness which is to render one powerless; fear promises defeat and it keeps our eyes and mind on possible failure. Fear vexes our spirit and binds the will. It is not God's will for His children to have their mind, their emotions, and their will, and consequently their faith, enslaved by the fear of man. God has not given us a spirit of fear but of power, love, and a sound mind.
Fear Knows You Personally
Fear possesses wisdom about each of us. It knows our weaknesses, and it knows how to frame or present arguments that, in the past, have been effective. We all have sensitive or weak areas of our life, and fear attempts to exploit our weaknesses. But God is faithful and He is stronger than our weaknesses and if we will cast off the fear of man then His strength will enable us.
What To Do
The power to overcome fear is within every Christian, for God has given it to them. Every Christian, in Christ, is given the power to live an overcoming life of faith. Every born-again Christian is given a new identity. Our lives are joined to the resurrected Christ and we live by the power of God. We are told to reckon ourselves dead to sin and alive to God. No weapon formed against us will prosper and all the promises of God, in Christ Jesus, are yes and amen! Because of Christ, God is on our side and we need to take off the old garments of fear and doubt and throw them away like we would throw away rotten, stinking, old clothes; violently take them off, never looking back, and throw them in the trash. We then take the new clothing that Christ gives us, the clothing of faith, hope, and love, and begin living in the fear of God, not man. Our strength and life are in God, so we can kiss the fear of man good-by; in Christ, the power of fear has been defeated! In the powerful grace of God we begin walking out our victory over fear.
God bless you,