Fear and the Bondage of Sin:

Just thinking about the fear that must have been in the hearts of the fugitive slaves heading for the Underground Railroad must have been overwhelming. The goal of reaching freedom and safety outweighed the fear of being caught and taken back to being in bondage.

We are in bondage as well, that is the bondage of sin.  We cannot free ourselves because we would not even be aware of being in bondage to sin. When we are in our fallen nature; that is the bondage of the flesh doing the command of the world we have no idea of our sin. This type of bondage may be said to be the carnal bondage and includes the bondage of the fear of man, bondage of works of the flesh, bondage to sin, and of the devil.  Living in the bondage of sin is living in darkness living after the flesh we shall die. (Romans 8:13).

It is only when we live in the light of Christ that this bondage of sin can turn into the Spirit of adoption. For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God. The Spirit itself bears witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God. We become heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ which means we suffer with Jesus, that we may be also glorified together. Our nature was created and made subject to vanity, not willingly, but by reason of him who has been subject to someone or something else’s control. We have been delivered from the bondage of sin and corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God.  (Romans 8:14-21). The Spirit of Adoption bears witness with our spirit that we are the children of the LORD God. We know that the LORD God will convince the world of sin. The Spirit of Adoption explains what righteousness is and it is essential and created in us by the sanctification of the spirit. Jesus Christ promised that the comforter, that is the Holy Spirit, will abide in us, and teach us all things, and bring all things to our remembrance. (John 14:26).

When someone says they are in fellowship with Jesus and walks in darkness, we lie and are in the bondage of sin. It is when we walk in the light of Jesus Christ it is through the blood of Jesus that cleanses us from all sin. “8 If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. 9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 10 If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.” (1 John 1:8-10). The LORD God has not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind. (2 Timothy 1:7).

The Fear of the LORD:

Not all fear is bad. The “fear of the Lord” is one of the most famous Bible verses that has to do with fear; “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom: and the knowledge of the holy is understanding.”  (Proverbs 9:10). This also is stated in Psalms 111:10 which says: “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom: a good understanding have all they that do his commandments: his praise endures forever.” The Book of Proverbs also tells us that the fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge; but fools despise wisdom and instruction. (Proverbs 1:7). Those who hate knowledge, and does not choose the fear of the LORD and those who reject the counsel of the LORD and despised all His reproof shall go their own way the turning away of the simple shall slay them, and the prosperity of fools shall destroy them. Those who listen to the LORD shall dwell safely, and shall be quiet from fear of evil. (Proverbs 1:29-33). The fear of the LORD is to hate evil: pride, and arrogance, and the evil way, and the perverse mouth, the LORD hates. (Proverbs 8:13). The fear of the LORD prolongs days: but the years of the wicked shall be shortened. (Proverbs 10:27). In the fear of the LORD is strong confidence meaning trust, confidence (Strong. 2001. # 0982): and his children shall have a place of refuge. (Proverb 14:26). The fear of the LORD is a fountain of life, to depart from the snares of death. (Proverbs 14:27). Better is little with the fear of the LORD than great treasure and trouble therewith. (Proverbs 15:16). The fear of the LORD is the instruction of wisdom; and before honor is humility. (Proverbs 15:33). By mercy and truth iniquity is purged: and by the fear of the LORD men depart from evil. (Proverbs 16:6). The fear of the LORD tended to life: and he that has it shall abide satisfied; he shall not be visited with evil. (Proverbs 19:23). By humility and the fear of the LORD are riches, and honor, and life. (Proverbs 22:4).  Let not your heart envy sinners: but be you in the fear of the LORD all the day long. (Proverbs 23:17).

Behold, the eye of the LORD is upon those that fear Him, upon those that hope in His mercy; to deliver their soul from death, and to keep them alive in famine. Our soul wait for the LORD: He is our help and our shield. Our heart shall rejoice in him, because we have trusted in His Holy name. Let the mercy, O LORD, be upon us, according as we hope in Him. (Psalms 33:18-22). The LORD takes pleasure in them that fear him, in those that hope in his mercy. (Psalms 147:11).

A woman who fears the Lord is to be praised (Proverbs 31:30).

Knowing therefore the terror of the Lord, we persuade that is to introduce one by words to believe (Strong. 2001. # 3982) men; but we are made manifest unto God; and I trust also are made manifest which means to be made known or visible (Strong. 2001. #5319) in your consciences which means between what is morally good and bad (Strong. 2001. #4893). (2 Corinthians 5:11).

There are times to when we should fear the LORD:

When the days of vengeance, that all things which are written may be fulfilled. There shall see signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring. The hearts of men shall fail them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken. Then shall they see the Son of man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. When these things begin to come to pass, then we are to look up, and see our Redemption draw nigh. (Luke 21:22-28).

Who shall not fear thee, O Lord, and glorify thy name? For thou only art holy: for all nations shall come and worship before thee; for thy judgments are made manifest.” (Revelation 15:4).

We are told to fear those which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul. You should fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell. (Matthew10:28). Jesus talking to His friend saying, friends, “Be not afraid of them that kill the body, and after that have no more that they can do. But I will forewarn you whom you shall fear: Fear him, which after he has killed has power to cast into hell; yea, I say unto you, Fear him.” (Luke 12:4-5).

The Fear of the LORD gives mankind a moral conscience:

It is interesting to note that fear is a product of faith. The fear of the LORD is why mankind has a moral conscience. It is our faith in the LORD that allows us to keep and act upon our moral conscience. We have been predestinated as the adopted children of the LORD by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of his will. Because of this have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of him who works all things after the counsel of his own will. We first trusted in Jesus, whom we trusted after we heard the word of truth, the gospel of salvation: after we believed, we were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise, our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory. (Ephesians 1:5-14). Because we are sons, God has sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father.  Wherefore we are no more a servant, but a son; and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ. (Galatians 4:6-7).

Fear is the admiration and honest respect for the LORD, it results with us partaking in a spiritual, moral and ethical behavior before the LORD God as His people. Because we are adopted into the family of the LORD God we shun evil (Proverbs 3:7) we even hate evil pride, and arrogance, and the evil way, and the perverse mouth. (Proverbs 8:13).

The fear of the LORD is clean, enduring forever: the judgments of the LORD are true and righteous altogether. (Psalms 19:9). The secret of the LORD is with us that fear Him. The LORD God will show those that fear Him His covenant. (Psalms 25:14). The eye of the LORD is upon those that fear Him as well as upon those that hope in His mercy. (Psalms 33:18). Those that fear the LORD there is no want to them. (Psalms 34:9).  The mercy of the LORD is from everlasting to everlasting upon those that fear the LORD, and his righteousness unto children’s children; too such as keep His covenant, and to those that remember His commandments to do them. (Psalms 103:17-18).  Fear the LORD God and keep His commandments this is the whole duty of man. (Ecclesiastes 12:13).


Strong, James. (2001).The New Strong’s Expanded Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible. Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

Cite Article Source

MLA Style Citation:

Holstein, Joanne “Fear and the Bondage of Sin:.” Becker Bible Studies Library Nov 2015.<https://guidedbiblestudies.com/?p=2945,>.

APA Style Citation:
Holstein, Joanne (2015, November) “Fear and the Bondage of Sin:.” Becker Bible Studies Library. Retrieved from https://guidedbiblestudies.com/?p=2945,.

Chicago Style Citation:
Holstein, Joanne (2015) “Fear and the Bondage of Sin:.” Becker Bible Studies Library (November), https://guidedbiblestudies.com/?p=2945, (accessed).

Joanne Holstein is a Becker Bible Studies Teacher and Author of Guided Bible Studies for Hungry Christians. She is a graduate of Psychology/Christian and Bible Counseling with Liberty University. She is well-known as a counselor to Christian faithful who are struggling with tremendous burden in these difficult times. She is a leading authority on historical development of Christian churches and the practices and beliefs of world religions and cults.

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