Victory in Christ over Fear, a series

Jenny Fulton

iBelieve Contributing Writer
Updated Feb 02, 2023
Victory in Christ over Fear, a series

Every fear gives us a choice: will we pull back from God or draw closer to Him?

Everyone experiences fear. It can cause us to freeze up or react more passionately than we desire. 

Sometimes fear is good. It may prompt us to exercise caution and wisdom in dangerous situations or push us to protect ourselves and others from legitimate threats. But some fears, if not properly dealt with, may prevent us from living fully in the love and freedom Christ offers. God knows our struggles and can give us victory in Christ over fear. 

Physical and Spiritual Responses to Fear

Fear always produces a response. Physical symptoms may include: 

-Increased blood pressure and heart rate

-Faster breathing

-Greater muscle tension 

-Decreased ability to think and reason

-Loss of appetite 

We also react spiritually. It’s all too easy to focus on the object of our fear and inadvertently pull away from God. When this is the case, we may feel spiritually dry, empty, or exhausted. We might feel alone, wondering if God has abandoned us. 

The good news is that God is always with us, and we have a choice in how we respond. We don’t have to withdraw from Him when fear closes in on us. Instead, we can make the decision to cry out to Him in our distress. And He will always be there, ready in power to help.

What Are We Afraid Of?

Sometimes we involuntarily respond to fear before we are consciously aware of its source. Therefore, we may need to ask God to reveal what we’re reacting to/are afraid of.

A few common fears include:

-Worrying what people might think, say, or do

-Anxiety that our needs won’t be met

-Fearing the unknown

-Being afraid of danger 

It’s often helpful to talk through (or process through writing) what we’re thinking and feeling. Sometimes, expressing our concerns out loud or on paper can give us another perspective. It brings our worries out of hiding so we may begin to see and understand what we’re dealing with.

Focus on God

Physical responses to fear heighten our awareness of the threat. On a spiritual level, it’s easy to become laser-focused on what we’re afraid of. But it doesn’t have to be this way. 

Psalm 56:3 says, “When I am afraid, I will put my trust in You.” Like many people in the Bible, we can choose to either focus on the object of our fear or turn our attention to God, who is far greater than anything in this world.

We can focus on God by crying out to Him, listening to Him, and seeking His wisdom. And we can read and meditate on Scriptures that encourage us and speak to our fears. Listed below are some great ones to start with:

Worrying about what People Might Think, Say, or Do

-Proverbs 29:25. “The fear of man brings a snare, But he who trusts in the Lord will be exalted.”

-Psalm 118:6. “The Lord is for me; I will not fear; What can man do to me?”

-2 Kings 6:16. “So he answered, ‘Do not fear, for those who are with us are more than those who are with them.’”

-Psalm 27:1. “The Lord is my light and my salvation; Whom shall I fear? The Lord is the defense of my life; Whom shall I dread?”

-Matt 10:19 “But when they hand you over, do not worry about how or what you are to say; for it will be given you in that hour what you are to say.”

-Read Matthew 10:28-31. “Do not fear those who kill the body but are unable to kill the soul…”

Anxiety that Our Needs Won’t Be Met

-Read Matthew 6:25-34: “For this reason I say to you, do not be worried about your life, as to what you will eat or what you will drink; nor for your body, as to what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing?...”

-Philippians 4:6-7. “Be anxious for nothing, 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 comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”

Fearing the Unknown

-Deuteronomy 31:8. “The Lord is the one who goes ahead of you; He will be with you. He will not fail you or forsake you. Do not fear or be dismayed.”

-Joshua 1:9. “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous! Do not tremble or be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”

Being Afraid of Danger

-Psalm 23:4. “Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I fear no evil, for You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.”

-Psalm 34:7. “The angel of the Lord encamps around those who fear Him, And rescues them.”

-Psalm 46:1-3. “God is our refuge and strength, A very present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth should change And though the mountains slip into the heart of the sea; Though its waters roar and foam, Though the mountains quake at its swelling pride. Selah.”

Other Encouraging Verses

-Proverbs 3:25-26. “Do not be afraid of sudden fear nor of the onslaught of the wicked when it comes; For the Lord will be your confidence and will keep your foot from being caught.”

-Psalm 61:1-4. “Hear my cry, O God; Give heed to my prayer. From the end of the earth I call to You when my heart is faint; Lead me to the rock that is higher than I. For You have been a refuge for me, A tower of strength against the enemy. Let me dwell in Your tent forever; Let me take refuge in the shelter of Your wings. Selah.”

-Isaiah 12:2. “Behold, God is my salvation, I will trust and not be afraid; For the Lord God is my strength and song, And He has become my salvation.”

-Isaiah 41:10. “‘Do not fear, for I am with you; Do not anxiously look about you, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, surely I will help you, Surely I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.’”

-Luke 12:32. “Do not be afraid, little flock, for your Father has chosen gladly to give you the kingdom.”

-Romans 8:15. “For you have not received a spirit of slavery leading to fear again, but you have received a spirit of adoption as sons by which we cry out, ‘Abba! Father!’”

-2 Timothy 1:7. “For God has not given us a spirit of timidity, but of power and love and discipline.”

Ask God for Wisdom

Once we know what we’re afraid of and have turned our attention to God, we can ask Him for wisdom concerning what to do next. 

God may reveal a solution to the problem that’s creating anxiety.  

Sometimes He offers a way to avoid or escape a dangerous situation as He did for Joseph in Matthew 2:21-23 and Paul in Acts 9:22-25.

He may direct us to press on in the midst of dangers, as Paul describes in Acts 20:22-24

There may be times He asks us to wait in His peace and to trust Him. “Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Do not let your heart be troubled, nor let it be fearful” (John 14:27).

Every fear gives us a choice: will we pull back from God or draw closer to Him? When we draw closer, God strengthens us and is able to turn our fear into greater faith. 

“I sought the Lord, and He answered me, And delivered me from all my fears” (Psalm 34:4).

However God leads, we can rest in the knowledge that He is greater than anything we might be afraid of. Through Christ’s power and the work of the Holy Spirit in our lives, He can give us victory over fear. 

*All verses taken from the NASB

Photo Credit: ©iStock/Getty Images Plus/francescoch

Jenny Fulton is a wife, mother, writer, and member of Wholly Loved Ministries who enjoys studying God’s Word and sharing what she has learned with others. She is the author of Princess Lillian and Grandpa’s Goodbye, A Princess’ Guide to the Alphabet, and Striving for Unity: a Study on 1 Corinthians (upcoming release). An enrolled member of the Navajo Nation, Jenny developed a keen interest in language and cultures. In 2007, she graduated from Grace University with a B.S. in Bible, a B.S. in elementary education, and an endorsement in K-12 ESL. For the next seven years, Jenny worked as a teacher in a variety of cultural and educational settings, both abroad and in the United States. Her days are now spent raising her three young daughters and writing as much as time and opportunity allows.