The Fear Factor

Bible Book: Luke  8 : 40-48
Subject: Fear

What is a “Phobia?”

It is an “irrational” or “unnecessary” fear of things. Over 322 unique phobias have been identified:

1) Fear of Spiders…50% women and 10% men have this fear
2) Fear of being evaluated negatively in social situations
3) Fear of Flying because of thought of crashing
4) Fear of being in place where help is unavailable
5) Fear of being in small confined spaces

Do people have “Phobias” about Jesus? Maybe they are afraid of conviction of their lifestyle. Maybe they are afraid of change that needs to take place in their lives. How did the woman in our Bible text today handle her “Phobia” of Jesus?

1. She Fought Her Fear With the Right Crowd!

A. They were excited

It is a good thing to be around people excited about Jesus. Getting in the right crowd is important. You can find people excited about all sorts of things, but in order to overcome fear, you need to be in the crowd excited about Jesus.

B. They were encouraged

It is easy to be discouraged. When you are surrounded by people that are encouraged about life, and about eternity, it will lead to a good result. Being around discouraging people can pull you down - it becomes contagious. It is possible that this woman had been around people he constantly reminded her that she would never be any better. She found her way to a different crowd, a crowd that could lift her spirits and lift her eyes to Jesus.

C. However, they were anonymous and uncommitted

There was a problem with this crowd. She didn't really know them and as individuals there is no sense in which they were really committed to Jesus. This woman needed for Jesus to know her in order to help her. She was going to have to reach out to Him if she really wanted help! This was a problem! She wasn’t supposed to be in a crowd legally because of her condition. Legally, she was supposed to stay away from others because she was considered unclean in her condition. What could she do?

II. She Fought Her Fear With the Right Conviction

A. Her phobia was telling her to run

Her fear could have taken over and she could have missed her opportunity. Fear makes one want to flee.

B. Her need is telling her to come to Jesus

This woman recognized that she had to overcome her fear. Her need was great and she must find an answer rather than wallowing in her misery. A pity-party was not going to help her.

C. Her faith was telling her fear is not from God

Paul discovered a truth about fear some years after this woman discovered it. Listen to what he penned: 2 Timothy 1:7 says, “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and love and of a sound mind.”

Fear does not come from God. Surely, we all know that there is a "respect" in life that we sometimes call fear. For example, we are to fear God and serve Him - that means to respect His power, nature and greatness. We are to have a "respect" for certain things, such as dangers to our well-being. All of us know not to reach over and pick up a rattlesnake that we find crawling on the ground or coiled up ready to strike. But, fear that keeps us from being, becoming or having what God means for us to have is not from God - never was - never will be from God!

III. She Fought Her Fear With the Right Contemplation

A. Fear will always feed on itself; what you fear can come true

Job 3:25, 26 tells us, “For the thing I greatly feared has come upon me, and what I dreaded has happened to me. I am not at ease, nor am I quiet; I have no rest, for trouble comes.”

B. Fear will always distrust God
C. Fear will always deter Growth
D. Fear will always defeat Grace

How do we overcome fear? Simply, by having faith in the Lord. Faith is the victory that overcomes the world. Look at this woman and see how she overcame her faith and her frailty. She told herself, “If I can get to Jesus, He will help me overcome!” Jesus will help us through the circumstances of life

Psalm 46:1 “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.”

Jesus will help us the right contacts through life

1 John 44:4 says, “You are of God, little children, and have overcome them, because He who is in you is greater that he who is in the world.”

Do you need to overcome your fears today? Do you have a need that man cannot meet and that you do not have the answer to? Come to Jesus. And, whatever you do, don't let fear keep you from trusting Jesus openly and honestly today. Like this woman, if you will trust Jesus, you will have victory!