Journal Ps 1-3 (all references are from the ESV; changes in punctuation are mine)
Scripture: “Now therefore, O kings, be wise. Be warned, O rulers of the earth.
Serve the Lord with fear and rejoice with trembling.” Ps 2:10-11
Observation: As the emphasis in Proverbs and specifically growing in wisdom, there are verses that are full of wisdom to embrace without the word “wisdom” to trigger attention.
Analysis: “Serve” and “rejoice” are two distinct verbs. Serve or to serve is to be a servant, or to give oneself to another for the work of service/doing something. Rejoice can be demonstratively happy, to celebrate, to exult, delight, to express joy about something.
Normally my mind translates the words “serve” and “rejoice” initially only one way: Doing something for somebody and celebrating respectively.
But the Psalmist tosses in a couple of other words that I don’t usually think of: Fear and Trembling.
Proverbs is especially clear that the Fear of the Lord has a bunch of benefits. Cultivating fear of God? Most folks shy away because it may not make sense to their understanding. The last three generations have been exposed to the concept of the Love of God overriding every other thought. Fear is bad, Love is good. To turn my head around to align with the “Fear is good” biblically correct line is tough.
Trembling? Shaking, quaking in rejoicing in God? What kind of praise and worship is that? Goes along with the Fearing God stuff. “I am happy and rejoicing in God; why should I fear and tremble?” The writer of Hebrews attempts to set my attitude straight:
“Therefore, let us be grateful for receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, and thus (therefore again) let us offer to God acceptable worship, with reverence and awe, for our God is a consuming fire.” (Heb 12:28-29)
Look at all the places in the Bible where it describes “falling on their faces, rejoicing with trembling in His presence.” This is one of the normal reactions in Revelation.
So, what’s the point? What should I be packing my heart with? As we are reading Proverbs, do not forget the Fear of the Lord is the beginning of Wisdom, of Knowledge, is to hate transgression, something that is chosen and not refused. It prolongs life, gives strong confidence, and brings satisfaction.
Therefore, let my heart be full of Love and Fear of God, who holds my life in his hands lovingly.
Prayer: Lord God, I see this firmly in my mind and the combination of interwoven Love and Fear is clear. There isn’t any “this or that” in the Gospel concerning Love and Fear. Help me to understand this fully, and pack it up in my heart all the rest of my days….
Ricky Two Shoes