For Sunday July 8 we will study 1 Peter 1:17-21 together. The title of our message will be The Joy in Fear and the theme is the fear of the Lord in the life of the believer. To prepare for our time in God’s Word this Sunday, you may find it helpful to read verses 17 and 21 prayerfully several times while alone with God or with your spouse or family. Then consider the following questions:

1) When Peter wrote that believers who call on God as Father should conduct themselves with fear throughout the time of your exile he was referring to a concept known as ‘the fear of the Lord’. Without looking up any other scriptures yet, take a moment and define ‘the fear of the Lord’, as you understand it.

2) In your opinion, is the fear of the Lord a good or a bad concept? Explain why you answer the way you answered this question.

3) Read Isaiah 11:1-4. In this scripture from Isaiah, which was fulfilled in Jesus Christ, the fear of the Lord is mentioned twice (vv. 2,3). Why do you think the fear of the Lord was one of Jesus’ qualities?

4) What does the fact that Jesus Christ walked in the fear of the Lord suggest about the importance of the fear of the Lord in a believers life? Explain your answer

5) Read Proverbs 1:7; 8:13; 19:23. Why is the fear of the Lord the beginning of knowledge? How does the fear of the Lord lead to life?

6) Compare Proverbs 8:13 with 1 Peter 1:17. How does the fear of the Lord motivate christians to depart from evil?

7) Using a dictionary, compare the word ‘servile’ with the word ‘filial’. What is the difference between servile fear and filial fear?

8) How does the gospel teach us to fear the Lord? (see Titus 2:11-14; 1 Peter 1:17-18)

9) How do you think the fear of the Lord leads to joy?

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