The children of Israel entering the promised land in Numbers 13 – 14 were worried about what was ahead of them. They feared the giants in the land. They didn’t know how they were going to obey and so they chose to complain.
Now don’t be so self-righteous. You and I do the same thing. Well, maybe you don’t. It could be I’m the only person in the world who can, at times, completely understand the children of Israel wondering the desert.
I found an interesting fact in the life and ministry of Jesus:
The most common command from Jesus comes from the whole “fear not” genre. There are 125 imperatives Jesus gave his disciples. Of these, 21 urge us to “not be afraid” or “not fear” or “have courage” or “take heart” or “be of good cheer.” The second most common command, to love God and neighbor, appears on only eight occasions.
It would seem Christ was more concerned about His followers fearing and worrying than He was with them having love.
Why is that? Lance Wallanau gives his reason for it:
“You’ll always put more energy into avoiding the thing you fear than pursing the vision you’ve got.”
Now I don’t think it’s a matter of God wanting us to love less so we worry less. I know when I worry less I can love more and worry seems to come even more naturally to us than love does. That’s why I see Christ telling us more than twice as often to “not fear” than He tells us to love…even though love is who He is.