Scripture is full of examples describing God as a powerful, positive, and loving force. But the Bible uses fear over 300 times when referring to God. Is fear just the mere respect or awe of God? Or is it something deeper? How can we fear God when His "perfect love expels all fear"?
Jesus Christ is the perfect example of fear and love working hand-in-hand. Jesus warned us to have fear of God while demonstrating His perfect love on the cross. He told us that we should be hating evil while showing mercy and grace for the people He encountered. Jesus Christ understood that fearing God helps us from falling into our sinful nature.
Bible Verses About Fear of God
Fearing the Lord is important to obedience to God. Godly fear helps you trust in the Lord and His plans. Jesus Christ is a good shepherd. A good shepherd understands that they can keep their sheep safe within the fence. He wants you to depart from evil. He wants to walk with you during the hard times. God despises sin. Learn to fear the Lord. When you learn to fear God, you will learn to trust in God. Here are our editor's picks of the best Bible verses about fear:
The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction.
The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and knowledge of the Holy One is understanding.
My son, if you accept my words and store up my commands within you, turning your ear to wisdom and applying your heart to understanding — indeed, if you call out for insight and cry aloud for understanding, and if you look for it as for silver and search for it as for hidden treasure, then you will understand the fear of the Lord and find the knowledge of God.
To fear the Lord is to hate evil; I hate pride and arrogance, evil behavior and perverse speech.
The fear of the Lord is a fountain of life, turning a person from the snares of death.
Better a little with the fear of the Lord than great wealth with turmoil.
The fear of the Lord leads to life; then one rests content, untouched by trouble.
The God of Israel spoke, the Rock of Israel said to me: ‘When one rules over people in righteousness, when he rules in the fear of God
He sought God during the days of Zechariah, who instructed him in the fear of God. As long as he sought the Lord, God gave him success.
Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather, be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell.
11. Job 28:28 NIV
And he said to the human race, “The fear of the Lord—that is wisdom, and to shun evil is understanding.”
12. Job 31:23 NIV
For I dreaded destruction from God, and for fear of his splendor I could not do such things.
13. Exodus 18:21 NIV
But select capable men from all the people—men who fear God, trustworthy men who hate dishonest gain—and appoint them as officials over thousands, hundreds, fifties and tens.
14. Exodus 20:20 NIV
Moses said to the people, “Do not be afraid. God has come to test you so that the fear of God will be with you to keep you from sinning.”
Now let the fear of the Lord be on you. Judge carefully, for with the Lord our God there is no injustice or partiality or bribery.
16. Psalms 25:14 NIV
The Lord confides in those who fear him; he makes his covenant known to them.
17. Psalms 64:9 NIV
All people will fear; they will proclaim the works of God and ponder what he has done.
18. Psalms 34:11 NIV
Come, my children, listen to me; I will teach you the fear of the Lord.
The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom; all who follow his precepts have a good understanding. To him belongs eternal praise.
The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing. He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he refreshes my soul. He guides me along the right paths for his name’s sake. Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. Surely your goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.
21. Luke 1:50 NIV
His mercy extends to those who fear him, from generation to generation.
Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.
Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed — not only in my presence but now much more in my absence — continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose.
If you carefully observe all these commands I am giving you to follow—to love the Lord your God, to walk in obedience to him and to hold fast to him.
Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.
For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
27. Isaiah 6:3-5 NIV
And they were calling to one another:
“Holy, holy, holy is the Lord Almighty; the whole earth is full of his glory.”
At the sound of their voices the doorposts and thresholds shook and the temple was filled with smoke.
“Woe to me!” I cried. “I am ruined! For I am a man of unclean lips, and I live among a people of unclean lips, and my eyes have seen the King, the Lord Almighty.”
28. Acts 9:31 NIV
Then the church throughout Judea, Galilee, and Samaria enjoyed a time of peace and was strengthened. Living in the fear of the Lord and encouraged by the Holy Spirit, it increased in numbers.
God is all-knowing, all-powerful, and all-present. Trusting God's plan requires that you fear Him. As Christians, we serve a God who hates sin. We need to fear God to overcome sin. God is awe-inspiring. He can "destroy both soul and body in hell". The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom. So have fear in the Lord, knowing He only wants the best for you. May you experience victory through Jesus Christ today!