Ps. 128:1 How happy are those who fear the LORD--all who follow his ways!
There is much resistance today about fearing the Lord. The thinking is that because we live in grace, God is no longer to be feared. The emphasis is on God's love and not His holy nature. When we talk about Him being holy, we treat it lightly, as if it no longer needs to concern us. We have mellowed God to the point where He is no longer perceived to be fearsome. We hide in grace and don't talk much about God being holy and the judge of all sin. Hell is seldom talked or preached about. Preaching a soul to the altar no longer characterizes our preaching. Condemnation for sin is not promoted much.
I wonder what we have lost as a result of our "new" approach to the Gospel. Is the church as strong as it once was, a guiding voice in the local culture? Has the fire gone out of our evangelism? Are we as concerned for lost souls as we once were? Does anyone really listen to us anymore? Are we paying a price for removing the altar out of our churches? Why is there an alarming shortage of pastors in the evangelical church? Why is it that there are so many in the pulpits today preaching a different message than the Gospel?
I believe there is a correlation between the condition of the church today and our sacrificing our fear of God. Fearing God instills within a respect for God in His holiness. It keeps us aware of the need to for Him. It motivates us to not take for granted God's grace. It keeps us from removing God from off His throne. It keeps us from adapting God to our likings. It moves us to live holy lives before Him.
Those who fear the Lord are happy because they are diligent about staying right with God. Their relationship with God is the most important part of their lives. They purposely and diligently seek Him. Because God is the priority of life, they know the peace of God that comes from knowing all is well with their soul. There is no greater joy in life than to follow the Lord in all His ways.