‘The fear of the Lord leads to life’ (23). ‘The friendship of the Lord is for those who fear Him’ (Psalm 25:14). What a strange combination - friendship and fear! We ask, ‘How can there be friendship where there is fear?’. Here, we have a special kind of friendship - ‘the friendship of the Lord’ - and a special kind of fear - ‘the fear of the Lord’. Why is this friendship and fear so special? It’s because the Lord is special! He is the God of perfect holiness - ‘Holy, holy, holy is the Lord Almighty’. We must come before Him in ‘the fear of the Lord’ - ‘Woe is me! I am undone; I am a man of unclean lips...’. He is the God of perfect love. He calls us into friendship with Himself - ‘Your guilt is taken away and your sin forgiven’ (Isaiah 6:3,5,7). We rejoice in ‘the friendship of the Lord’. Let us respect Him with ‘the fear of the Lord’.