The Bible tell us that fearing people is a trap. No one likes to fall into a trap but why do so many people fall into the trap of fearing people!?
The fear of man brings a snare, But whoever trusts in the Lord shall be safe. Many seek the ruler’s favor, But justice for man comes from the Lord. Proverbs 29:25-26
If you have ever tried to catch a mouse, you know that by putting some desirable food, they can be enticed to walk in the trap and take the bait. The trap may or may not kill them but for sure it will stop them from functioning and running around the house.
Similarly, the purpose of a trap is to stop someone from fully functioning in their God-given purpose, and the fear of man does just that. People get ensnared by fear of man because the desires in their hearts draws them to the bait. We all have desires and wants, but when they cause us to compromise or move outside the will of God, that is a problem. Those desires also make us vulnerable to the enemy’s devices.
The scripture tells us that the fear of man is a snare. One of the reasons that we can get ensnared by fear of man is when we think that someone has something we want or need. This gives them power over us. We begin to perceive that we cannot live without this person’s favor. Over time, this person and their earthly power become magnified in our imagination to the point that we put our trust in it. Gradually, we become trapped and our focus shifts from trusting God to looking to this person for what we want/need.
The scripture warns us that many people seek the ruler’s favor. People like favors and privileges, and they desire to be close to those in power who have the ability to bless them with favors and privileges. But in reality, they don’t realize that their desire for favor, status, or privilege causes them to be trapped by the fear of man.
Daniel’s life teaches us important lessons about not fearing man. He served several kings for decades of his life because of his accuracy and integrity. However, his position in government was his profession. His true position was that of being God’s prophet and being His spokesperson. He did not waver in that commitment when his position and even his life were in danger. He did not get into the office politics, and neither did he try to compete with his colleagues to prove them wrong. He may have lived a life of luxury but he wore it like a loose garment. He knew that at any moment he may lose it if the king was not pleased with him. Daniel had a job to do and that was to please God regardless of where he was placed and whom he served.
When someone fears a person, they basically surrender their will to the will of another man and what this person thinks is right. This in turn causes them not to make any waves or speak up when something isn’t right. This is when one can lose their God-given purpose because they will not do what God is asking them to do.
Let’s ask the Lord to show us if there is any fear of man in our hearts that would stop us from the doing His will. Are there things that you hope and expect to get from others? Whose favor are you seeking? Are you seeking a privilege or a position? Do you feel ensnared by someone or a system? Is there an area that you feel you have compromised because of your fear of a person or a system? I believe, the Lord will show us those areas, so we can address them and correct them. As a believer, our will should be surrendered to the will of God, so we can be available to do what He is asking us to do.
I will continue with this subject in the next devotional.