You who fear him, trust in the LORD—
he is their help and shield.
What an odd contradiction.
The Bible says to trust in the Lord. But it also says to fear the Lord.
Trust and fear seem to be mutually exclusive. But if you really think about it, you can’t separate them. They’re not contradictory at all.
You can’t trust God if you don’t fear Him. Although it sounds weird, I think it comes easily enough to us when you see it from a human perspective. My sons can’t fully trust me if they don’t fear me. I don’t mean fear in a bad way, just in the sense that they have a respect for the fact that I’m bigger than they are.
If something’s more powerful than you, it’s something you fear. But it’s also something you can trust because how is it going to protect you if it’s not bigger than you? I don’t trust my kids to protect me in my house. They trust me.
And therein lies the problem because in order to trust what you fear you have to believe it’s for you. This is where many Christians completely miss the point of God’s power and majesty. They see it as something to cower in front of. They act like fearing God is perpetually walking around with the knowledge that at any moment He could crush them. And they suspect He might. And that sometimes He might even want to.
That’s not the fear of God. True fear of God is rooted in trust. You will never fear God properly until you realize that the very thing that should make you fear Him is the very thing that He’s working for you.
The very power that should frighten your enemies should comfort you.
The very power that could crush you is carrying you.
The very power that could obliterate you is actually holding you together.
The second you became a child of God, God became 100% for you 100% of the time. And so now you can trust Him completely. And therefore fear Him properly.
Trust and fear aren’t enemies of each other. Trust and fear go hand in hand.