If you know these things, blessed are you if you do them. John 13:17
This text puts life into all other texts. The Great Shepherd is ringing the bell that ends all other bells. It is the final nail to drive home all his former counsels. Happiness is found in doing, not just in hearing the word of God. We are his workmanship, not to knowledge, but to god works. The Scripture says little of the learning of the apostles, but much of their acts. Moses was ‘a man mighty in word and deed’; Cornelius, ‘a man fearing God, and giving much alms’; the centurion, worthy of favour, for ‘he built us a synagogue;’ Dorcas ‘made many coats for the poor’; Gaius, ‘the host of the church’ etc. Their works shall follow them in that great day: ‘Come you blessed of my Father, for I was naked, and you clothed me.’ God is blessed by such men, and such men shall be blessed by God. Words are but wind, and leave no impression as a ship in the sea, but actions are noticed by men. Monica, St Augustine’s famous mother, taught her neighbor gentlewomen when asked how she won her perverse husband. ‘Why’, she said, ‘I observed his mind, and pleased him in all things that didn’t matter. I was patient in his passions, gave him contentment in his diet and attendance, and so I made him first God’s, and then mine by degrees.’ ‘These ways should be used by preachers and they would convert multitudes. The more men know and the less they do, the more they dishonor God. O let us do the works of true Christians, and approve ourselves to God and man! Do not be content with the easier and cheaper work. Every morning in the planning of your affairs, acknowledge your own disability and commend yourself to the work of his grace in desire and action. Entreat him for help that Christ may live through you.
In 1961, A.W. Tozer wrote in The Knowledge of the Holy that the way some Christians think about God is sinful. Dr. Arnold Frank, in The Fear of God: A Forgotten Doctrine confirms that the 21st century church, in the pew as well as the pulpit, continues to regard God as impotent and irrelevant in other words, without godly fear. As such, Dr. Frank, with a theologian’s skill and a pastor’s heart, walks us through the Scriptures, letting the Word of God speak about the fear of God.
In addition to clear, biblical exposition, Dr. Frank also weaves in the wise and timeless counsel of the Puritans to help us see how the fear of God is a most needed and practical doctrine.
Do you approach God with a godly fear? The Fear of God: A Forgotten Doctrine will be a skillful and gracious reminder of how we should regard the holy, sovereign Creator.
“The biblical concept of the fear of God is too often marginalized or ignored by the Christian church and its preachers today. The result is shallow views of sin, easy belief, and antinomianism. With the aid of Puritan preachers, Arnold Frank sounds a clarion call for a biblical and sure approach to the fear of God.” Joel Beeke (President, Puritan Reformed Theological Seminary)