There Is Nothing to Fear

5 Mins read

1 Peter 3:6 (NIV)
Like Sarah, who obeyed Abraham and called him her lord. You are her daughters if you do what is right and do not give way to fear.

This passage from Peter may seem like an odd one to choose for a study on fear. In 1 Peter 3, Peter speaks a lot about the outline for a Godly marriage. We know that Peter was married, as Jesus healed his mother-in-law of a fever in Luke 4. In this passage, Peter was talking about how Abraham and Sarah had a Godly marriage.

However, today’s study isn’t about marriage. Instead, we’re going to focus on the end of what Peter said to those who would receive this letter: “Do not give way to fear.”

While everyone is facing their own unique circumstances, fear is a common enemy. In fact, Satan uses fear to infiltrate essentially every area of our lives. We fear what life would look like if we didn’t have the relationships that we have, so we break ourselves in order to sustain them. We fear what would happen if our finances were thrown into upheaval. We fear for the safety of our children, for their futures, and for our own.

When something happens in our lives to bring those fears into reality, fear becomes an even bigger foe. The husband who was served with surprise divorce papers from his wife fears the idea of a future spent alone.

The woman who has committed her entire professional life to the same company fears losing everything when her boss tells her that they’re restructuring the company, and that her position will no longer exist. There is certainly no denying that we deal with fear in the hypothetical, and then we deal with it when those hypotheticals become reality.

Peter was a man who knew about fear. In fact, there are multiple instances in the Gospel accounts in which Jesus told Peter to stop being afraid. The fears that Peter faced are the same ones that we often deal with today.

Today, discover more about how Peter overcame fear which empowered Him to encourage other believers to do the same thing. You don’t have give way to fear anymore.

Fear of the Future
Luke 5:8-11 (TPT)
When Simon Peter saw this, he fell at Jesus’ knees and said, “Go away from me, Lord; I am a sinful man!” For he and all his companions were astonished at the catch of fish they had taken, and so were James and John, the sons of Zebedee, Simon’s partners. Then Jesus said to Simon, “Don’t be afraid; from now on you will fish for people.” So they pulled their boats up on shore, left everything and followed him.

While we don’t know the details of Peter’s fishing business, we do know that it was successful enough for him to have partners. Had Peter been a smalltime, one-man fishing outfit, he would’ve had no partners and would’ve likely made just enough money for him and his family to survive. While fishing wasn’t a way to get rich, a successful fishing business in New Testament times could provide security.

When Jesus told Peter to push into deeper waters so He could use Peter’s boat as a pulpit, Peter did so. He had fished all night and caught nothing, but this tired, frustrated fisherman did what Christ said.

As Jesus concluded His sermon, He told Peter to cast his nets into the water. The same nets that had been rolled up, dried, and put away were to be cast by the same fishermen who had worked relentlessly all night for nothing. But again, Peter obeyed.

What happened next was the first miracle that Peter ever witnessed personally. He pulled in so many fish that the nets started to fray and the boat began to sink. Peter called for another boat to come and help, and it started sinking, too. That’s when Jesus called Peter to discipleship.

The first thing He told Peter to do was to give up fear. Peter was scared of the future. What would life look like without his fishing business? What would life be like when he didn’t go home to his wife each night? Peter feared the future, which is why Christ told him to stop being afraid.

You can overcome your own fear of the future when you embrace the fact that God has a beautiful plan for your future.

Fear of Adversity
Matthew 14:30-31 (TPT)
But when he realized how high the waves were, he became frightened and started to sink. “Save me, Lord!” he cried out. Jesus immediately stretched out his hand and lifted him up and said, “What little faith you have! Why would you let doubt win?”

Peter, Andrew, James, and John were experienced fishermen. They had seen storms before. But the one that hit that night terrified them. We know that the winds were howling, and the waves were filling the boat, but it seems likely that they had seen storms before. This one must have been worse than the others.

Unironically, Jesus walked to the disciples on the same Sea of Galilee that He called Peter to be a disciple on.

When the disciples saw Jesus walking on the water, their fear grew. However, Peter put his faith to the test. In an act of blind faith (or perhaps total desperation), Peter stepped out of the boat and started walking towards Jesus. Everything was going fine until the storm distracted him, causing him to sink. Jesus grabbed Peter out of the water and reminded him to stop being afraid.

No matter what type of storm you’re facing, you don’t have to be afraid. The same storm that is over your head is under His feet. Don’t be afraid, He is with you, even in the storm.

Fear of Death
Luke 12:4 (TPT)
“Listen, my beloved friends, don’t fear those who may want to take your life but can do nothing more. It’s true that they may kill your body, but they have no power over your soul!”

Is there anything that humans fear more than death? Is there anything that we consider more final than the grave? Of course not. Even when we give our lives to Christ, and know in our hearts that God has promised us eternal life with Him, the prospect of death is a scary thing.

Jesus knew the suffering that the disciples would endure for their calling. In an act of total transparency, He made sure that they knew about it, too. He never shied away from telling them exactly what type of persecution they would face because of their commitment to Him, which ensured that they made their decisions to follow Him based on having all the information.

While this conversation wasn’t a private one between Jesus and Peter, Peter was there for it. Jesus was explaining to the disciples once again that they would be persecuted to the point of martyrdom for their faith and their ministries.

However, He told them not to be afraid of people who could kill their mortal bodies but could not touch their souls. Why? Because we don’t even have to be afraid of the most mysterious, terrifying thing that we can conceive.

Standing on Christ’s promise that we don’t have to fear death goes far beyond having peace regarding your own eternity. Instead, it is a powerful reminder that if we don’t have to fear death, we don’t have to fear anything. The God we serve has established His power over death as the Giver of Life.

Christ established His dominance over death when He resurrected. The Holy Spirit that quickened Christ’s mortal body lives in us, and will one day resurrect our mortal bodies. We don’t have to fear death, and if we don’t have to fear death, we don’t have to fear anything!

A Closing Prayer:
Heavenly Father, help me to overcome the fear that I deal with on what feels like a daily basis. Each new day seems to bring about something that I need to be afraid of, but I know that with You, I don’t have to give way to fear. In Christ’s name, Amen.

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