Fear is something we all struggle with. We worry about tomorrow, our finances, the members of our family…some of us even worry about the number of things we are fearful about.
Things get really interesting when people accept Christ. It seems as if our fear should automatically disappear, but it doesn’t. It’s at that point we begin to wonder, what does the Bible say about fear?
Are There Many Bible Verses About Fear?
There’s an urban legend that the phrase “Do not fear” appears 365 times in the Bible. I call it an urban legend because I can’t prove it. Because the phrasing differs per translation, it gets a little tricky to try and track down that exact phrase.
What I can tell you from my own Bible reading, is that the phrase occurs a lot. Ever since that first occurrence with Adam after the Fall, fear seems to be our natural reaction.
We are afraid when we come into God’s presence. We are afraid in our dealings with our peers. We are afraid in the presence of our enemies. We’re afraid of change, afraid when things remain the same. We’re afraid of our fears. But I have noticed that God is quick to reassure His people.
1. He reassures them when they come into His presence. When John had his vision of Jesus, his first response was fear, but Jesus was quick to reassure him.
And when I saw Him, I fell at His feet as dead. But He laid His right hand on me, saying to me, “Do not be afraid; I am the First and the Last.” Revelation 1:17 NKJV
2. He reassures them when He gives them a task to do. When Moses died, the mantle of leading the Israelites fell on Joshua. God knew what a difficult task it would be, but He didn’t want Joshua to be afraid.
Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9 NKJVAfter the Fall, fear became our natural reaction. But God is quick to reassure His people. #facingourfears #hebrews12endurance Click To Tweet
3. He reassures them when they face their enemies. One of the last speeches Moses made to Israelites contained a reminder that if they remained obedient, God would fight their battles for them.
“When you go out to battle against your enemies, and see horses and chariots and people more numerous than you, do not be afraid of them; for the Lord your God is with you, who brought you up from the land of Egypt.
And he shall say to them, ‘Hear, O Israel: Today you are on the verge of battle with your enemies. Do not let your heart faint, do not be afraid, and do not tremble or be terrified because of them; Deuteronomy 20:1, 3 NKJV
4. Our God is quick to remind us that we have no need to fear as long we depend on Him. Before Jesus’ crucifixion, He told His disciples that they would have peace.
Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid. John 14:27 NKJV
As children of God, we can rest assured that the Bible is filled with many verses that teach us how to manage our fears.
What is fear according to the Bible?
There are 501 occurrences of the word fear in the King James Version of the Bible. The word afraid first appeared in Genesis 3:10. Adam heard the voice of his Creator and he was afraid. We know the story. We know that Adam and Eve had disobeyed God’s explicit instructions.
Fear entered the garden of Eden when Adam and Eve sinned. Prior to Genesis 3, everything on earth was very good. But that all changed after Lucifer deceived the woman (1 Timothy 2:14). When God called to Adam after the Fall, his words were:
And he said, I heard thy voice in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked; and I hid myself. Genesis 3:10 KJV
In an instant, fear and shame entered God’s perfect world and they have been here ever since. Adam and Eve had eaten the fruit from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil and they experienced fear. We know that sin and fear are intricately woven together. But did you know that God and fear are also intertwined? Don’t start stoning me just yet, let’s work through it together.
The word translated as fear in Genesis 3:10 is the Hebrew yârêʼ, (pronounced yaw-ray’) and is used to refer to both reverent fear and dread. But it wasn’t reverent fear that Adam and Eve were experiencing then, it was the terror that exists when someone knows they have done something wrong and will need to face the consequences.
The beauty about God is that He is perpetually reassuring humanity. ‘Do not fear,’ He tells us, ‘I am with you.’
God knew that the fears of humanity had risen to dangerous levels. We would fear the God who gave us life. We would run from Him and refuse to accept the help from Him that we need. We would fear each other. We would fear the animals and they would fear us. The perfect balance had been disrupted.
What Does the Bible Say About Fear?
It shouldn’t be a surprise to learn that there are a lot of Bible verses about fear. God knew His people had developed a number of phobias. Because of that, He spends a lot of time reassuring us that we can trust Him. When we put our faith in Him, we have no reason to fear.
As Christians, we have a good reason not to fear. We don’t have to be afraid because God is with us. But when the enemy comes whispering lies, sometimes it’s hard to remember what to believe. It’s for that reason I’d like to remind you of some of the Bible verses on fear.
Scriptures on deliverance from fear
When fear wants to steal our peace and joy, it’s good to remember that God is with us. In times of great stress, meditate on these verses:
Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. – Isaiah 41:10 ESV
I sought the Lord, and he answered me and delivered me from all my fears. – Psalm 34:4 ESV
When I am afraid, I put my trust in you. In God, whose word I praise, in God I trust; I shall not be afraid. What can flesh do to me? – Psalm 56:3-4 ESV
“Be strong and courageous. Do not fear or be in dread of them, for it is the Lord your God who goes with you. He will not leave you or forsake you.” Deuteronomy 31:6 ESV
The Lord is on my side; I will not fear. What can man do to me? – Psalm 118:6 ESV
Bible verses about fear and anxiety
I don’t know about you, but sometimes my fear and anxiety block my view of God. All I can see is this thing I’m worried or anxious about. But when I refocus my thoughts on God, the size of my fear shrinks, and everything shifts back into perspective.
I know that if you would meditate on the Word of God, the same thing would happen for you. When fear and anxiety threaten to overwhelm you, remind yourself of these Bible verses on fear:
“Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.” – Matthew 6:34 ESV
For God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control. – 2 Timothy 1:7 ESV
Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.- Philippians 4:6-7 ESV
Bible verses overcoming fear
Fear is a part of our daily lives, but if we’re going to walk the path God has prepared for us, it’s not okay to allow fear to cripple us. We must overcome our phobias and anxiety so we can become the God-designed version of ourselves.
Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. Psalm 23:4 ESV
You shall not be in dread of them, for the Lord your God is in your midst, a great and awesome God. Deuteronomy 7:21 ESV
The angel of the Lord encamps around those who fear him, and delivers them. Psalm 34:7 ESV
Why We Need to Meditate on Bible Verses on Fear
The authority of the Bible rests on the authority of God. God is Supreme over all things including shame and fear. He has already given us the victory and the tools we need to defeat fear, or at least, keep it under our control. Take a few moments to read through this list of “fear not” verses in the Bible using BibleGateway.com:
You have the power to control your fear. That’s one of the gifts that we receive from the Holy Spirit. Meditate on some of these Bible verses about fear (and others!) and you’ll be surprised how quickly your fear recedes in the face of your faith.
Challenge: What is your greatest fear? How can Jesus’ statements in John 14 help you to get your fears under control?