5 Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said, “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.”
6 So we say with confidence, The Lord is my helper; I will not be afraid. What can mere mortals do to me?” Hebrews 13:5-6 NIV
It is interesting to watch a very young child on Christmas morning. They may have several presents, but they choose one with a very colorful wrapping. This just happens to be the one that you think will be their favorite. The child struggles a little bit to get the wrapping paper off. They look at the toy inside. Then they push the toy away and start playing with the wrapping paper. At a young age they have a problem with assigning the proper value to the weightier treasure.
The writer of Hebrews connects two thoughts together which have an impact on our understanding of fear. Let’s look at the first statement and then draw a couple of conclusions how we can navigate being fearful.
“Keep your lives” in the greek is a noun pronounced “tropos”. It means “a way” or “turn in a new direction or conduct” that influences your character. The writer is saying that your relationship with Christ has turned your value system into a new direction. Things that once held the place of importance in your life will give way to that which is truly eternal. You have a new bent in your character towards life in Jesus
“From the love of money”. The particular use of the word “love” in the greek is compounded in the word Aphilargyros. “A” means the opposite or negative. “Phil” is the root for “Phileo” meaning “to love by being very fond of”. And “argyros” literally means silver and figuratively money. Together the word means, be the opposite of someone who loves or pursues money. During this time of crisis, we are being challenged by the revealing of those things that we once felt were the most important. Maintain valued relationships over your money and stuff.
“Be content with what you have” is the greek word “arkeo”. Its root meaning is contained by evaluating strength. It is the same word that Paul used when he wrote, “my grace is sufficient for you.” We can be content when we know how strong the substance is that we are leaning upon. The love of money will fail, but the words of God will stand throughout eternity. God is the rock foundation that will never be moved. Is your life built upon Jesus as the cornerstone of all that your are?
“God has said, ‘Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.’” For the follower of Christ this is the bedrock foundation for our relationship. He never abandons us. He remains through the rest of our lives. Through crisis, He is there. When we lose someone in death or accident, He is there. When we have sinned and messed up horribly, He remains. When we don’t know the answer to having enough money or food, He is there. When our mind begins to fail and we don’t remember, He remains and never forgets us. When our love for Him grows cold and we chase after other idols hoping they will also make us happy, He doesn’t move away. When others say, “show us your God!”, His voice whispers inside to your spirit, “I am here with you!”
“So” the writer uses a connecting word to add to the last thought. The word is typically used to create emphasis. We would probably use the word “Now!” and then put an exclamation mark on it. Knowing that God is with you always, Now say this…
“Say with confidence” is tharrountas. It means to be courageous, bold or confident with emphasis on being cheerful. We may say it like this, “i’ve got some really good news to share” or “I’m excited to say”. The idea is that the message is so good, that you want any and all to hear what you have to say. First say it to yourself, with confidence.
“The Lord is my helper; ”. “Helper” has its root origen in a military term of bringing assistance. More than just help, it means to urgently show up right on time. The emphasis is on the desire and quickness of the one who can provide the help is moving swiftly toward the one who needs the help. The writer is having everyone declare that it is the Lord, Jesus who is disposed to being our helper. Jesus is constantly moving our direction to bring the help that we so desperately need.
“I will not be afraid” Knowing that Jesus is our helper, we can overcome being afraid. If God is with us, what can man do to us. We know that man can torture, persecute, and kill our bodies. But they are totally incapable of separating Jesus from our spirit. This body that we live in will pass away, but our spirits will live forever with Him.
Fear has many wrappings that it desires for you to focus upon. It is covered with an endless supply of the “what if’s”. “What if I run out of money? What if I lose my job? What if I get sick? What if I give the sickness to someone else? What if they run out of toilet paper? What if the stores close, where will I get food? What if the government doesn’t help?” And on and on it goes”
For every “what if”, reply with confidence of “what IS for sure”; “The Lord is your helper, who will never leave you, nor forsake you.” That is the weightier value that will sustain you through this life and into the next. God’s promises are stronger and more sustainable than every “what if”.
Fear needs to be spoken to with truth. Don’t let the lies of partial truths lay hidden in your mind. Bring every fearful thought to the light of God’s word that it may be exposed. Even when your experience is heavy upon you and everything you feel is out of whack, still lay it at God’s feet. Declare His truth as real and let your experience catch up to that reality.
Your feelings and thoughts do not trump God’s truth, His word will endure throughout all time. He says that He loves you and will remain with you forever. So! Fear not on this Friday and every other day.
Blessings Love y’all