What does it mean to fear God?

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What does it mean to fear God?

Psalms 19:9: The fear of the Lord is pure, it endures forever; The judgments of the Lord are true, they are all just. 

Many get lost and stray in their faith because they have trouble understanding the meaning of fearing God. Others use this ignorance to justify their letting go by shouting the paradox of love and terror. This assertion, such as it is – “to fear God” – also remains something rather confused for the lost souls who want to find the truth but who resist when they have the impression of having to “be afraid” of a tyrant.

There is nothing like it! God is not a despot. In the proper and common sense of the term, the verb “to fear” is synonymous with being afraid or being terrified. But having a fear of God is quite another thing.

First, let us remember that God is a God of love, unconditional love towards His children as His creatures. His divine love present in grace does not clothe martyrdom or pressure but patience and kindness. 


We, therefore, understand that to fear God is not to harbor fear of Him. On the contrary, it is a question of returning the love He has for us to Him. Our fear of God comes to establish reciprocity in a relationship where only one of the members is loved without being loved.

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Through this, the univocal love of God towards us is transformed into reciprocity because we submit. The fear of God is the product of a sincere heart that is truly anchored in its faith in God and loves him without contours. A love that expresses itself through respect, submission, and obedience.

To fear God is to rely on Him, to serve Him with dedication in obedience and respect for the commandments. It is submitting to Him with love, devotion, faithfulness, and integrity of heart.

To fear the Eternal is to dwell in the dimension of the Holy Spirit. In other words, adopting an attitude pleasing to God and feeding on His Word in order to be a living offering. This is the very essence of fear in God. Thus it is written: ” Besides, brothers, since you have learned from us how you should conduct yourselves and please God, and this is what you do, we pray to you, and we adjure you in the name of the Lord Jesus to walk in this regard from progress to progress (1 Thessalonians 4:1). 

Therefore, we understand that fearing God consists of getting rid of everything that is enmity to Him to succinctly climb the ladder of spiritual maturity.

This passes in particular through the thirst for God, seeking Him, becoming attached to Him, and being obedient: “You will go after the Eternal your God, and you will fear Him; you will keep His commandments, obey His voice, serve Him, and cleave to Him (Deuteronomy 13:4). Likewise, the fear of the Eternal is extended to the fact of celebrating Him, adoring Him, of magnifying Him by rendering thanksgiving for the benevolence and the infinite love He shows towards us. Let us remember this verse that urges us to do so: “…Fear God, and give Him glory…” (Revelation 14:7).

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What does the fear of God Mean?

  • The fear of God does not exonerate from obedience.

1 Samuel 12:14 If you fear the LORD if you serve him if you obey his voice, and if you do not disobey the word of the LORD, you will cleave to the LORD your God, you and the king who rules over you. 

  • Blessings are the grace of lovers of the Lord.

Psalms 111:10 The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom; all those who observe it have a sound reason. His glory endures forever. 

Proverbs 15:33 The fear of the Lord teaches wisdom, and humility precedes glory.

Proverbs 22:4 The fruit of humility, of the fear of the Lord, is wealth, glory, and life. 

  • The fear of God causes disgust for sin.

Proverbs 23:17: “Let your heart not envy sinners, but always fear the Lord.”

  • The fear of God implies an exclusive and sincere love.

Joshua 24:14: Now fear the Lord, and serve Him with integrity and faithfulness. Destroy the gods that your fathers served across the river and Egypt and serve the Lord. 

Indeed, we cannot claim to fear the Eternal if we are still attached to false worldly gods.

In short, fearing God overcomes confusion, misunderstanding, and prejudice. In other words, it is to adore Him, reverence Him with all our hearts, and remain in the virtuous paths, walking in all His ways. Therefore, let us keep in mind that “  Blessed is the man who is continually in fear! But he who hardens his heart falls into trouble (Proverbs 28:14).

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