Proverbs 25:29 - Fear God or Fear Man?

Proverbs 25:29 - Fear God or Fear Man?

Proverbs 25:29 - "Fear of man will prove to be a snare, but whoever trusts in the Lord is kept safe"

Tags: Proverbs, fear of man, snare, trust, memory verse, bible verse, bible quote, spiritual quote

Do we fear God more than we fear man?

Do we fear the consequences of disobedience to God more than we fear the consequences of disobedience to those around us?

If we are honest with ourselves, the answers to these questions are often no.

Instead, our thoughts and behaviors show that we are more interested in pleasing man than in pleasing God.

We want to be liked...

We want to be feel important...

We want to have influence...

Pleasing people can be very natural. The feedback and experience is immediate and part of the visible world.

In contrast, much of pleasing God drives consequences that are delayed and reside in the spiritual realm. As a result, efforts to please God do not have the same kind of immediate reward or feedback that satisfy our desires.

Thus, we are naturally drawn to please man over God across many, many situations each day. To illustrate:
  • When having lunch with work colleagues... do you pray before you eat (God's way) or just start eating (man's way)?
  • When watching the big game with a group of old college buddies... does your mind stay pure (God's way) or do you swear, lust, and drink more than usual (man's way)?
  • When listening to a group of friends gossip about another person... do you ask them to stop gossiping or defend the un-present (God's way) or do you add your gossip to the conversation (man's way)?

Our tendencies are so strong to please man, we need God's word to remind us of the eternal perspective that exists for all of us.

This verse from the book of Proverbs can be of great guidance to us.

Here in Proverbs 25:29, we are reminded that although we are prone to try to please man over God, ultimately, our fear of God should reign. This advice is crucial to our spiritual well-being. In fact, it is so critical that this passage calls the fear of man a "snare" - it is a trap that we can easily fall into with eternal consequences.

By continually looking to please those around us, we get trapped into a lifestyle and a lifetime of NOT pleasing God. But pleasing God is how we store up spiritual treasures in heaven.

God promises that anyone who trusts in Him will be kept safe. Despite what may make us afraid about displeasing man (e.g., lack of success at work, being ostracized from groups), we can take confidence in His promises to keep us safe, even if those things happen in our lives.

Apply this:

1. Reflect on this verse from Proverbs 25:29 multiple times over the next couple of weeks
2. Look to be more aware and observe your motives in pleasing God and others
3. Use this Proverb to guide your attitudes and behaviors by questioning yourself in specific situations - "Am I looking to please God here, or man?"

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