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How to Face Fear Part 1 (Confidence)

Updated: Mar 22, 2020

Andrew Walker

Pastor, East Marion Baptist Church

Psalm 27:1

The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold[a] of my life; of whom shall I be afraid? 2 When evildoers assail me to eat up my flesh, my adversaries and foes, it is they who stumble and fall. 3 Though an army encamp against me,

my heart shall not fear; though war arise against me, yet[b] I will be confident.

We don’t know the exact situation, but it is quite clear that David and his army are surrounded by a larger army which naturally evokes fear.  In Psalm 27 David guides all of us who fear in such situations into three things that we do in the face of fear so that we are not ruled over by fear.  Here I simply want to see the first thing, namely that we have confidence in the face of fear.

I’ve always felt that this part of the Psalm is like a military cadence.  You know what these are – “I don’t know but I’ve been told…” Well, here, David seems to be guiding his soldiers, and us along with him into just such a sound off and response.  David shouts – “The Lord is my light and my salvation.” And with a resounding boom his soldiers respond, “Whom shall I fear.” And on and on the passage goes.

David is wisely leading us to recognize that the situation exposes a truth which for most of our lives remains unrecognized. When his soldiers faced this army, or when we face COVID-19, we suddenly come face to face with the reality that we are not in control of what comes next.  Just a week ago we thought we were, but now that illusion has been removed.

But here is where confidence comes in.  As we recognize that we do not have control, we identify and proclaim the one who does have control.  He is the one who, as Psalm 139:16 says, has all the days of our lives written in his book. He has ordained the length of our days, and nothing will change that until he says so. So we shout this truth to ourselves – “The Lord is the stronghold of my life; of whom shall I be afraid.”  Such a confidence comes to those who set their confidence not on themselves, not on institutions, and not on circumstance, but instead upon the Lord.

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