Week 11 – Day 3

Prov. 3:9-10 Honor Jehovah with your substance and with the firstfruits of all your produce; then your barns will be filled with plenty, and your vats will burst open with new wine.

To revere God means that we also honor God. Proverbs 3:9-10 says that we must honor Jehovah with our substance and with the firstfruits of all our produce…. If we make more money to lay up treasure for our future, that is pitiful. At least one tenth, the firstfruits, of our produce must be given to God. We should always be very generous in giving of the things that God has given us. This honors God. (Life-study of Proverbs, p. 9)

Today’s Reading

God demands that His children be holy. In 2 Corinthians 7:1, Paul says, “Therefore since we have these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all defilement of flesh and of spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.” This verse shows us that our holiness is very much related to our fear of God. God is holy, and the more we draw near to Him, the more we feel our uncleanness. The more we serve God, the more we fear ourselves. When we first learn to fear the Lord, it is natural that we fear the self-element in everything we do. For example, your son may come and ask what he should do. If you fear God, you will be afraid of the self-element in your answer. This is the meaning of fear. Suppose a brother asks you for help. If you fear God, you will be afraid of yourself in rendering help to your brother. But at the same time, you will also be afraid of yourself in refusing to help your brother. You are constantly in fear of yourself…. In your acquaintance with the brothers and sisters, you may constantly be afraid of any mixture of the self….To fear is to be afraid of the self in everything that you do. In criticizing or praising others, a person may have the fear that this criticism or praise comes from the self. Having a fearful heart is being afraid of the mixture of self-element. (CWWN, vol. 37, p. 163)

To revere God means to fear offending Him. Reverence is an indispensable attitude that fallen man should possess…. Man is fallen because sin has entered into man, human nature has become flesh, and the world has been produced. Sin, the flesh, and the world are incompatible with God. If man is slightly careless by giving room to sin, the flesh, or the world, he sins against, offends, opposes, and resists God. Therefore, there is a need for man to revere God. (CWWL, 1957, vol. 3, “The Living God and the God of Resurrection,” pp. 28-29)

We should fear Christ [Eph. 5:21]….Being in the fear of Christ indicates that our subjection to one another is in the mood, realm, and atmosphere of fearing Christ. Here Paul speaks of the fear of Christ for the sake of our relationships and contact with the people around us….We can only be subject to one another in the fear of Christ.

Ephesians emphasizes Christ as the Head of the Body. One another in verse 21 refers to the members of the Body. Being subject to one another establishes a normal relationship among the members under the Head. For example, if the hand has a problem with the arm, is the hand not subject to the arm or the arm not subject to the hand? According to our natural concept, the lesser should be subject to the greater, and thus, the hand should be subject to the arm. But if the arm does not want the hand, then the arm is not being subject to the hand. We often have the thought that wives should be subject to their husbands, not that husbands should be subject to their wives. However, should husbands be subject to their wives? “Being subject to one another in the fear of Christ” in verse 21 is the general subject, but only then does Paul speak of wives being subject to their own husbands. Therefore, not only should wives be subject to their husbands in the fear of Christ, but husbands should also be subject to their wives in the fear of Christ. (CWWL, 1953, vol. 2, pp. 467-469)

Further Reading: CWWL, 1952, vol. 2, “The Vision, Ministry, and Leading of the Lord’s Serving Ones,” ch. 2; CWWL, 1959, vol. 2, “Knowing and Experiencing Christ as Life,” ch. 12