As I write, one theme is dominating the news headlines – toilet paper supplies in our supermarkets are running low as a result of “panic buying” by large numbers of the Australian population.
Why is this?
One reason suggested is the false belief that toilet paper can be used as a face mask to protect you from contracting the Coronavirus.
Now we are getting to the root cause of this erratic behaviour – fear – fear induced by the threat the Coronavirus outbreak represents.
Fear is a spectre that lurks, seemingly hidden, at the back of our hearts but often drives unhealthy and irrational behaviours.
Look carefully at the Genesis account and you will see that fear drove Adam and Eve to rebel against God’s command not to eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. They bought the lie that God was holding out on them and so they acted on this false belief, which in turn led to more fear! (See Genesis 3:1-13).
Every one of us has fears and left unchecked, they can cripple us.
Fear that my marriage may end in divorce and I will be unable to cope.
Fear that my past will always haunt me – that I can never be forgiven or find peace.
And perhaps the greatest fear of all – death – and what lies beyond the grave.
The Bible, however, has much to say about fear – it has no place in the life of faith! Time and again, God speaks directly to our spectre of fear and His message is straightforward: “Do not be afraid!”
This is nowhere more gloriously displayed than on the first Easter morning when the risen Jesus greets the grief stricken women at His tomb with the words “Do not be afraid.” (Matthew 28:10).
The supposed “failure” of Good Friday, and the fear it generated in Jesus’ followers is swept away by these words and the presence of the living, resurrected Jesus.
This is why the Gospel is good news – because the death and resurrection of Jesus has dealt with our sin and death and all the fears associated with them.
Are you fearful of something today?
Then take courage from this – there are 366 commands to not be afraid in the Bible, one for every day of the year!
This Easter, and beyond, allow the presence of the resurrected Jesus to dispel all your fears!