WHY SATAN USES FEAR IN OUR LIFE

October 21, 2016

WHY SATAN USES FEAR IN OUR LIFE

It’s Thursday,, so it’s Nehemiah night. I know, twice in one week

I realized that God had not sent him, but that he had prophesied against me because Tobiah and Sanballat had hired him. He had been hired to intimidate me so that I would commit a sin by doing this, and then they would give me a bad name to discredit me. Remember Tobiah and Sanballat, O my God, because of what they have done; remember also the prophetess Noadiah and the rest of the prophets who have been trying to intimidate me…. Moreover, they kept reporting to me his good deeds and then telling him what I said. And Tobiah sent letters to intimidate me.

Nehemiah 6:12-14, 19

We have already dealt with this a little previously, but since it happens twice in this passage, I think it needs a separate point. One of the enemy’s primary tactics against Nehemiah was psychological warfare, more specifically, fear. We just read it in Nehemiah 6:13-14 and again in verse 19. In bringing a false prophet, Tobiah and Sanballat were ultimately trying to make Nehemiah intimidated or it can be translated frightened, which would have led him to sin. Tobiah also tried to intimidate him through the sending of letters (v. 19).

It’s important to see the enemy’s intent of bringing fear behind the tactic of false teaching and the letters because it was also the same intent behind the tactic of slander. Nehemiah 6:9 said, “They were all trying to frighten us, thinking, ‘Their hands will get too weak for the work, and it will not be completed.”‘

Behind the tactic of slander, false teaching, and the letters, the enemy was ultimately trying to make Nehemiah afraid. Satan also constantly tries to do that with us. He is always trying to promote fear, anxiety, and worry in those who follow God. In fact, Peter compares Satan to a roaring lion seeking whomever he may devour. First Peter 5:8 says, “Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.”

Why does a lion roar? The roar is strategic to paralyze his prey with fear, so he can attack and devour it. In the same way, Satan commonly uses fear to try to devour believers.

Tobiah and Sanballat were trying to use fear to immobilize and paralyze Nehemiah. They tried to frighten him with gossip, which could have led to the king of Persia’s wrath. The enemy tried to attack him with the threat of killing him. The enemy was trying to use fear to hinder the work of God. Our enemy, Satan, uses fear for similar purposes with us.

  1. Satan uses fear to stop believers from doing God’s work.

We see this in the Parable of the Talents. Matthew 25:24-25 says,

“Then the man who had received the one talent came. ‘Master,’ he said, ‘I knew that you are a hard man, harvesting where you have not sown and gathering where you have not scattered seed. So I was afraid and went out and hid your talent in the ground. See, here is what belongs to you.”

In Matthew 25, the person with one talent never used his talent. His reason was fear; he was afraid. We see this same excuse all the time with believers. They are afraid of failure; they are afraid of success; they are insecure about their abilities. Many are paralyzed and kept from doing God’s work because of fear. They won’t serve in the leadership of a ministry; they won’t evangelize; they won’t pray. Fear keeps them from doing the work of God.

In fact, we commonly see this tendency with many God called for service. We saw this with Moses and Gideon. Both struggled with fear when God called them to serve. Similarly, many Christians are paralyzed by some type of fear which limits their usefulness. The enemy uses psychological warfare.

  1. Satan uses fear to hinder the work of God in believers.

We see this in the Parable of the Sowers. Matthew 13:22 says, “The one who received the seed that fell among the thorns is the man who hears the word, but the worries of this life and the deceitfulness of wealth choke it, making it unfruitful.”

The worries of this life (fear) kept the Word from ever producing fruit in the thorny ground. The Word of God is ineffective in many Christians because of the thorn of worry. Maybe they hear the Word and agree with it, but their fears keep the Word of God from producing fruit. They are worried about the future, about the past, about family, about career, etc. These worries hinder the work of God in them. It chokes the power of the Word of God.

  1. Satan uses fear to lead believers into sin.

That was the enemy’s plan with Nehemiah. He was tempting Nehemiah to fear with the hope that he would run into the temple and sin against God, weakening the people and causing them to doubt his leadership.

It’s the same thing in our daily lives. A person’s fear and insecurities will often lead them to sin. Abraham was afraid of losing his life because of his beautiful wife, so he lied to Pharaoh and said she was his sister. Abraham was afraid to not have a child, so he married a second wife, Hagar, and sinned against God. Fear led him into sin, and it is the same for us.

  1. Satan uses fear to lead a believer into discouragement.

Nehemiah 6:9 says, “They were all trying to frighten us, thinking, ‘Their hands will get too weak for the work, and it will not be completed.’”

Tobiah’s and Sanballat’s desire was to make Nehemiah too weak to complete the work. Similarly, as mentioned before, a discouraged, depressed Christian won’t be very productive in serving the kingdom of God. Their fear weakens their hands in the work. Proverbs 12:25 says, “Anxiety in the heart of a man brings depression.” Because of this, Satan works hard in sowing seeds of fear to weaken and discourage the Christian.

  1. In order to defeat fear, we must recognize that fear is not of God.

Listen to what Paul told Timothy: “For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline” (2 Timothy 1:7).

Paul tells Timothy, God has not given you that spirit of fear. He is calling Timothy to recognize that his insecurities, probably in ministry, were not from God. Paul said to the Philippians, “Be anxious for nothing” (4:6). We should not accept fear as from God. Certainly, there are healthy fears, such as the fear of the Lord, but fear that keeps us from serving God or trusting him is not from the Lord. In fact, Paul commands us to let the peace of Christ rule in our hearts (Col 3:15).

  1. In order to defeat fear, we must recognize our resources in God.

Paul did not simply tell Timothy to reject fear, he also gave him reasons. Look again at what he said: “For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline” (2 Timothy 1:7).

Paul said, “Timothy you don’t need to be afraid because God has given you power for whatever task he has called you to. He has given you love for people who are difficult. He has given you discipline to get the task done. Timothy, there is no reason to be afraid. Look at the resources God has given you.” God has given us these resources as well: power, love, and self-discipline.

  1. In order to defeat fear, we must pray.

In two of the times that Nehemiah was tempted to be afraid, both the open letter and the false prophet, how did he respond? He prayed.

They were all trying to frighten us, thinking, “Their hands will get too weak for the work, and it will not be completed.” But I prayed, “Now strengthen my hands.”

Nehemiah 6:9

Remember Tobiah and Sanballat, O my God, because of what they have done; remember also the prophetess Noadiah and the rest of the prophets who have been trying to intimidate me.

Nehemiah 6:14

Aren’t we encouraged to battle fear similarly in the New Testament? Remember what Paul told the Philippians:

Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Philippians 4:6-7

We combat it by: (a) choosing not to fear, (b) choosing to pray about everything, and by (c) giving thanks in everything.

This is the reason so many are crippled by fear and kept from doing the work God has called them to do. They have chosen to be anxious, chosen to be afraid. They have chosen to not pray about everything. And finally, most Christians don’t give thanks in everything. They complain, they get mad, they get angry, and therefore, the enemy still wins the victory. The promise of peace only comes to those who practice all these disciplines. Nehemiah battled fear through prayer and we must as well.

Do you realize you have an enemy just like Nehemiah?

There are events that are happening to you and your family through which the enemy wants to immobilize you with fear; he wants to cripple you with worries. However, God wants you to have peace so that you can continue serving him. Do you recognize the enemy’s tactics?

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

Pray for Daniel, 38 and facing serious prison time

Pray for Nathan, 27 years to go in a federal prison, no parole, no time off, he’s just had a birthday, he’s 38, raised in church.

Pray for sally his wife, 5 kids, she is resorting to prostitution to pay the bills, has already contracted aids.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: