I was recently reminded of a saying an old friend of mine loved to share – “You can be a man of faith and power or a man of paste and flower.” I used to consider the first to be self-apparent, but the latter to be a bit confusing. Over time I have come to understand that the man of paste and flower is the one who has no real substance, though appearance may be good. As I sat thinking about it and wondering why this particular phrase had popped into my mind, I heard the Lord say that the difference between the two was dependent upon which form of fear we have made a covenant with. At this I was intrigued, thinking that I didn’t desire a covenant with any form of fear, but as the Lord began to bring clarity to me on what He was saying, it had a profound impact upon my understanding of where were are and where we are going as the next move of God begins to unfold before us.
It is time to throw off the old covenant we have made with fear, as that fear relates to the things of this world and the spiritual darkness around us. It is, on the other hand, time to renew or make for the first time a new covenant with fear as it relates to the Lord our God. The Fear of the Lord must be re-established in the earth in order for the move of God that is on the horizon to truly unfold in the way God has set it before us. Fear of the Lord is often equated with honor and respect, yet understood correctly in Hebrew it remains, without doubt, a reverential fear. Consider for a moment that the world’s fears are nothing more than “honoring” or “respecting” the things of the earth more than the things of God. If we truly fear God, then it is impossible for any other fear to hold a place of authority in our life for “greater is He who is in me than he who is in the world” – 1 John 4:4.
Has fear held a place of authority in your life or the life of your church, your ministry, your business? Maybe it has been fear that you wouldn’t have all the resources you need to fulfill your destiny. Maybe it has been fear of what others would think if you spoke what God has given you to say? Maybe it has been fear of what others would say if you did what God has given you to do? Maybe it has been fear that you didn’t have the wisdom, the strength or the support to fulfill your vision? Maybe it has been a fear of what is going on in your community, state, nation or the world? Whatever, has plagued you today is the day to throw of that old covenant of fear and embrace the new one.
When the Lord began to speak to me about this Covenant of Fear He said, “You must have no fear in order to know fear.” Holy Spirit took me to the 14th verse of Psalm 25 and I realized that when I put aside the fears that have held me down and take hold of the Fear of the Lord, it allows me to embrace and come to understand a covenant with the Lord, that has always been there waiting for me to accept it.
The friendship of the LORD is for those who fear him, and he makes known to them his covenant. Ps. 25:14 (ESV)
The Hebrew word translated friendship here speaks of intimacy and secret counsel. It means the opportunity to access the inner circle and enjoy the secret counsel that comes from being there. So, the reverential fear of the Lord is what gives us access to His secrets and empowers us to walk in the same authority as Jesus – who is most certainly a part of that “inner circle” of the Father.
If the wrong kind of fear is seated in the place of authority in my heart, then I cannot fear the Lord properly. Most of us prioritize fear all the time, demanding that our lesser fears give way to our greater ones. For example, a person may have both a fear of tornados and a fear of enclosed spaces, however, when faced with the imminent threat of a tornado bearing down upon them, they will almost always subjugate their fear of enclosed spaces in order to enter the confined quarters of a storm shelter that will save their life. Make a Covenant with Fear today. Covenant to make the Fear of the Lord the priority in your life and let all other fears be subjugated to it. In this way, you do not have to reach a place where other fears no longer exist, you become capable of putting them down in the moment in favor of the fear that has priority in your life.
When I asked the Lord what this Covenant of Fear would bring forth, He took me to the book of Exodus and made clear to me that when we properly fear Him and begin to walk in His counsel, then the covenant he makes known to us is the one found in Exodus 34:10. It just so happens that it is this very covenant that most of the church has been crying out for, yet not understanding why they could not see it established.
And he said, “Behold, I am making a covenant. Before all your people I will do marvels, such as have not been created in all the earth or in any nation. And all the people among whom you are shall see the work of the LORD, for it is an awesome thing that I will do with you.” Exodus 34:10 (ESV)
This is a covenant of power and of authority. When this covenant is understood, then we can have an expectation that God will do marvelous things and the world we used to fear will see the God we now fear performing His Word. When we enter into this Covenant, God promises (Exodus 34:11) to drive out the Amorites, the Canaanites, the Hittites, the Perizzites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites from before us. This becomes monumental statement of favor when we understand the meanings of these six names. Consider what God is driving out of your life as you enter into this new Covenant with him:
Amorites – “a sayer”, lipservice
Canaanites – “zealous”, in this case the unsanctified zeal
Hittites – “terror”, fear
Perizzites – “belonging to a village”, peer pressure
Hivites – “villagers”, peer pressure
Jebusites – “threshing place”, a place of testing
By entering into a Covenant of Fearing the Lord first, he will drive out and remove the other fears that have previously had authority in your life. You will no longer be one know for crying out for the power and presence of God with your voice along, but become one known for displaying the power and presence of God. You your zeal for things that your own soul desires will be brought into a place of submission to a zeal for the things of the Lord. What those around you think or expect will no longer be a determining factor in your decisions or your actions. You will be able to walk through the place of testing and trial and come out with the chaff blown away by the wind of the Spirit just like the wheat on the floor of the threshing place.