Fear of God [Ecclesiastes 12:13 Daily Devotional]
What is this verse about?
Ecclesiastes is wisdom literature from the Jewish Scripture, and this book in particular has a lot of ups and downs throughout it. What the author is saying here, though, is that through all of what he just said only two things matter. The things that matter are fearing God and keeping his commandments. The author then says that these two things are our duty.
Fear of God
We hear this concept of the “fear of God” throughout all of the Bible, but I don’t think it means to literally be afraid of God like you would be a threat or an enemy. I honestly don’t think God wants us to be afraid of him, but I do think he wants us to hold him in high regard. It’s more than just respect, but it’s quite a bit less than being afraid like he’s some horror movie villain.
So how do we fear God, then? We do it by fulfilling the other part of our duties mentioned in the verse of the day: keeping his commandments. Here, as Christians, we don’t have the 600 plus laws to memorize as ancient Israel did. Jesus came to fulfill those laws and summed them up in two for us. We must love God with all we are and love others as ourselves. We can do that through prayer, worship, and serving.
Pray to God starting with gratitude for all he’s done. Then move on to what you still need. God cares deeply about your needs, and he actually already knows all of them, but he wants to hear you. From there worship him and celebrate what he’s going to do in your life and through you. Finally, serve others using the inspiration and energy you receive from the Holy Spirit.
Father, I thank you that I don’t need to be afraid of you but can approach your throne boldly and ask for the things I need. Help me to fulfill the duty you’ve called me to in loving you and others. It’s in Jesus’s name I pray, amen.