Victory Over Fear
January 17, 1999
Note in 1Sam. 15-21 the development of God’s rejection of Saul, annointment of David, and Saul’s developing jealousy which ultimately resulted in David fleeing for his life. He sought refuge with the Philistines in Gath, which was a monumental mistake.
Why would cause David go to the land of his hated enemies? Nothing but fear. He thought he had less to lose there than in his own land. Fear causes us to do irrational, insane things. When David decided how insane this was, he acted the part. Maybe it wasn’t so much an act since his fear became compounded. His fear caused him to act insane – literally. When he left Gath, he hid in a cave. Perhaps there he began to seek God. See Psalm 142.
He found victory over fear through prayer for which he gives praise and then instruction to others in what he learned. Our fear must be properly placed to be in perspective – then it becomes our ally instead of our enemy. Victory over fear is found in prayer and in praise. Those with similar needs identified with him and became the first company of a mighty army that finally began to establish the ordained boundaries of the Promised Land.
We see the development of David’s victory over fear in the prayer of Psalm 142 and in the praise and instruction of Psalm 34. Even the mightiest of men must at some time face the paralysis of fear through which faith must rise courageous and triumphant. From this comes the testimony of greatness – the greatness of God who is merciful toward his servants to deliver them from fear, whether it be fear of old age, change, sickness, death, testing, daily needs, children, relationships or what people say.
I. The Proclamation of Victory through Praise (vv. 1-10)
A Hymn on Victory over Fear
A. Experience of victory gained. (vv. 1-3)
1. The vow of praise.
2. The testimony of praise.
3. The invitation of praise.
B. Experience of victory shared. (vv. 4-7)
1. Divine conversation.
2. Divine transformation.
3. Divine deliverance.
4. Divine protection.
C. Experience of victory taught. (vv. 8-10)
1. Holy desire leads to holy protection.
2. Holy respect leads to holy provision.
3. Holy submission leads to holy power.
II. The Propagation of Victory through Instruction (vv. 11-22)
A Sermon on Deliverance from Fear
A. Instruction on reverence. (vv. 11-14)
B. Instruction on righteousness. (vv. 15-16)
C. Instruction on prayer. (vv. 17-18)
D. Instruction on faith. (vv. 19-20)
E. Instruction on victory. (vv. 21-22)
At Christmastime, a mother went shopping with her little boy. They went into a toy store that had a hobby horse that caught the little boy’s attention. He got on the horse and began to ride. The mother noticed the sign above the horse that made a plea for children not to play with the toys. She tried to get the boy off the horse to no avail. The more she tried the harder he gripped. The manager came over to try and explain the policy to the boy, saying that he couldn’t sell the toys if they were used or broken. He tried to get the boy off the horse to no avail. The harder he tried, the harder the little boy gripped on the horse. Then a man standing in the background asked if he could speak to the boy. He leaned over and whispered in the little boy’s ear. The boy got right off the horse and took his mother’s hand and said, “It’s time to go home now.” The mother, very curious about what the stranger could have said that accomplished what she and the manager could not, asked what the stranger had said to him. The little boy replied, “ He told me that if I didn’t get off that horse right now he would break every bone in my little body.”
Victory over fear is found in prayer. But sustained victory is found in praise. In fear of God, we must get off our “hobby horse” of fear, resulting in the contagion of complaint, and spread abroad the contagion of praise – lest He break every bone in our little bodies (Ps. 34:20). Ungodly fear drives us into the enemy’s camp. The praise of God is the essence of Christianity, the privilege of the child of God. In this we praise God for what he wants in spite of what we want. And in praising God we come to desire what he wants rather than what we want. And in this desire we become what he wants.