Fear: Its Public Expression
The officers shall speak further to the people, and say, ...What man is there who is fearful and fainthearted? Let him go and return to his house, lest the heart of his brethren faint like his heart.' And so it shall be, when the officers have finished speaking to the people, that they shall make captains of the armies to lead the people.
Deuteronomy 20:8-9 (NKJV)
Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.
Joshua 1:9 (NKJV)
Fear is a natural response to danger. God programmed it into the DNA of man and beast... for good reasons: the quick arousal of our senses and sensibilities: to stand or hide; to fight or flee; to prepare, negotiate or surrender.
For God's elect, being afraid in private is acceptable and understandable. When we take our fears to God in prayer, He strengthens our hearts. King David repeatedly revealed his prayerful angst, and God repeatedly helped him through it.
However, showing fear in public is unacceptable and dangerous. It's an invisible contagion that spreads through a crowd like poisonous gas, bringing down armies... or spurring mobs to terrible conclusions. God forbids it.
When Joshua was about to lead the children of Israel against fierce armies and fortified cities in the Promised Land, he was scared. So God tells him to 'man up' ... repeatedly; to show courage as an example for his people.
We must do likewise in the battles we face. How do we express public courage in the midst of Corona Virus:
1) We refuse to hoard.
2) We radiate peace.
3) We broadcast good will.
4) We show confidence.
5) We smile easily.
6) We help our neighbors.
7) We uplift our kin.
8) We tend to the sick.
9) We forgive quickly.
10) We do not complain.
11) We pray for others.
12) We wait patiently and glorify God.
## Fear: Its Public Expression (Part 4)
P.S. To read the other devotions in this series, please see the Fear series.