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April 16, 2021

Speak To The Storm

I like studying biblical words because of the added insight I receive from the different nuances of meaning. The Hebrew language, with its pictorial style, paints many rich pictures; and with a technical approach, the Greeks used to say they could say more in one word than other languages could in an entire sentence. A little arrogant, but possibly true. Without a doubt, God determined that these two languages would give us the Scriptures.

There is another reason I like to look up the original words used in Scripture, however. Some translations often use the same English word to translate different Hebrew or Greek words. And sometimes this is misleading. For example, the King James Version uses the word “time” to translate both chronos and kairos. However, one refers to general time (chronos), chronological time. The other, kairos, means strategic or opportune time. The importance of knowing which is used is immeasurable. From planting until harvest is chronos; the harvest window is kairos. If you’re a farmer, you better know the difference!

Another subject with which the KJV does this is fear. There are actually three Greek words in the New Testament which, at times, are all translated with the one English word, “fear.” One word, however, means “reverential fear or awe.” This is the word used when speaking of “the fear of the Lord.” Another word means “terror, dread or phobia.” This, of course, is a fear of harm, pain, or loss. It’s easy to see that knowing which word is used, matters. I have a “fear of the Lord” but I am not “afraid” of Him.

Then there is a Greek word that means “timidity or insecurity” - which is why I’m writing this post. Paul told his spiritual son, Timothy, “God hath not given us a spirit of fear, but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind” (2 Timothy 1:7). The word is deilia: timidity, insecurity, bashful, or shy.

Timothy was facing criticism, persecution, and attacks from people. His youthfulness and inexperience, compounded by the magnitude of his task in leading the church at Ephesus, was causing him to be insecure. Paul was not telling him he did not have to be afraid. It was not that type of fear that was controlling Timothy. He was telling him not to be timid or insecure. In other words, “be bold, and believe in what God has put in you. He has equipped you

to do this!”

Sometimes the two fears of harm and timidity work together to paralyze or torment us. In Mark 4:35-41, Jesus and the disciples were crossing the lake when a vicious storm arose. It looked like they would not make it through this storm, so the disciples awakened Jesus, who addressed the storm with, “Peace, be still.” The storm ended immediately. Then Jesus asked the disciples an interesting and strange question, “Why are you afraid?” Then He addressed their lack of faith.

I know why they were afraid, don’t you? These were experienced fishermen, who had made a living on this lake. When they concluded this storm was bad enough that they weren’t going to survive it, you can believe it was true. It makes more sense, however, when you realize Jesus did not ask them why they were afraid. He asked them why they were timid or insecure (deilia).

Christ was telling them they could have - and should have - done what He did: rebuke the storm! Boldness was needed at this moment, not timidity. This storm was a demonic strategy to harm them. Jesus had already told the disciples, “We are going to the other side.” They should have acted on His words and did what He had done. I am certainly not suggesting that I would have done things differently than they did. I am simply pointing out the lesson Jesus was giving them: “When you have My promise or direction, believe it and act boldly on it!”

A friend of ours, on the front lines of warfare for America, one who greatly loves our nation, and whose life was severely affected by the 2020 elections, was recently given a dream that pictures this lesson. You’ll be encouraged by it!

“I can honestly say I had one of the best dreams I have ever had last night. I was in what was my house in the dream, lounging comfortably in bed. I heard a voice say, ‘Run and hide! There is a hurricane coming!’

“I looked out the window and saw a terrible hurricane barreling towards my house. I knew I would likely drown. The storm was fierce, destroying everything in its path. I stood up out of bed, and the water was already at my ankles, and I knew the storm was just starting. The wind was blowing and debris was flying around my house. Again the voice said, ‘Run! Hide! You have to save yourself!’

“I thought about it and stayed standing. I grabbed the side of the bed, closed my eyes, and tucked my chin to brace for impact. I responded to the voice calmly, ‘I will not run. I will stand my ground in this storm.’

“Everything got quiet. I opened my eyes and my house was in order. No damage and it was completely dry. I looked out the window and saw the storm in the distance...fleeing from me.”

My comments to this person were that God was not only telling her the storm would not destroy her. He was also showing her what is in her spirit. He has not given her a spirit of timidity or fear. He has given her a spirit of faith and boldness.

We need not fear the storms. We must stand our ground and face them with faith. And if we do, we will win. The storm will run from us!

“Resist the devil and he will flee from you.” (James 4:7)

Pray with me:

Father, the last year has been difficult for many people. I’m sure some are tempted to retreat or, worse yet, abandon their faith. Some want out of the boat, others have decided they would rather be back in Egypt.

We pray that You would show them, as you did our friend, that deep within them they have the strength to overcome; that satan is an intimidator who wants us to think we are grasshoppers when facing giants and storms. But You have given us Caleb hearts. You said we are more than conquerors - we have more than enough strength in us to overcome. (Romans 8:37)

So we speak to the storm and say, “Be still! Stop! We will not listen to you, we will not run from you, and you will not destroy us. We are well able to possess the land, and we will do so. We are on God‘s timetable, and any delays will be used for our benefit. (Romans 8:28) Our times are in His hand. (Psalm 31:15). Everything He has promised, He will do. Our future is secure.”

Our decree:

We decree that as we resist the devil, he WILL flee from us!

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