To Fear God

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To Fear God

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Fear of God is a liberating emotion. How? Because once you fear God then there is no need to fear anyone else. 

In Exodus 1, the new Pharaoh is getting nervous about the tribe of Israel. He sees them as a threat and decides to start treating them harshly (see Exodus 1:8-10 Exodus 1:8-10 [8] Now there arose up a new king over Egypt, which knew not Joseph. [9] And he said to his people, Behold, the people of the children of Israel are more and mightier than we: [10] Come on, let us deal wisely with them; lest they multiply, and it come to pass, that, when there falls out any war, they join also to our enemies, and fight against us, and so get them up out of the land.
American King James Version×
). Pharaoh's plan to depress them isn't working that great. 

But the more he afflicted them, the more they multiplied and grew. And they were in dread of the children of Israel (Exodus 1:12 Exodus 1:12But the more they afflicted them, the more they multiplied and grew. And they were grieved because of the children of Israel.
American King James Version×
).

After this the Pharaoh has the idea to just kill newborn Hebrew boys. He enlists the midwives to help.

The king of Egypt spoke to the Hebrew midwives, of whom the name of one was Shiphrah and the name of the other Puah; and he said, "When you do the duties of a midwife for the Hebrew women, and see them on the birthstools, if it is a son, then you shall kill him; but if it is a daughter, then she shall live" (Exodus 1:15-16 Exodus 1:15-16 [15] And the king of Egypt spoke to the Hebrew midwives, of which the name of the one was Shiphrah, and the name of the other Puah: [16] And he said, When you do the office of a midwife to the Hebrew women, and see them on the stools; if it be a son, then you shall kill him: but if it be a daughter, then she shall live.
American King James Version×
).

Did the midwives obey Pharaoh? Did they fear him? People typically fear those who are more powerful than they are. So, what did the midwives do?

But the midwives feared God, and did not do as the king of Egypt commanded them, but saved the male children alive. So the king of Egypt called for the midwives and said to them, "Why have you done this thing, and saved the male children alive?"

And the midwives said to Pharaoh, "Because the Hebrew women are not like the Egyptian women; for they are lively and give birth before the midwives come to them."

Therefore God dealt well with the midwives, and the people multiplied and grew very mighty. And so it was, because the midwives feared God, that He provided households for them (Exodus 1:17-21 Exodus 1:17-21 [17] But the midwives feared God, and did not as the king of Egypt commanded them, but saved the men children alive. [18] And the king of Egypt called for the midwives, and said to them, Why have you done this thing, and have saved the men children alive? [19] And the midwives said to Pharaoh, Because the Hebrew women are not as the Egyptian women; for they are lively, and are delivered ere the midwives come in to them. [20] Therefore God dealt well with the midwives: and the people multiplied, and waxed very mighty. [21] And it came to pass, because the midwives feared God, that he made them houses.
American King James Version×
).

Think about this. The midwives feared God over Pharaoh. The Egyptian religion honored their king as a god, but the midwives saw the one true God as superior. They saw God as superior to the king of Egypt. 

Remember how I said fear of God is a liberating emotion? Let's learn from the midwives. Let's fear God, let's honor God, let's follow God. And let's sigh with relief at the freeing thought of fearing only God Almighty. 

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