Fear is a very powerful emotion. It is often thought of as a negative emotion—a terrifying fear, a dread, or horror. When we speak of “the fear of God” or godly fear, we mean reverence and respect. But this reverent fear is attached to the dread or horror of sin, a fear of hurting, grieving, and dishonoring God. Jeremiah said, “I will put my fear within them, that they shall not depart from me (32:40).”
Godly fear is implanted in us by regeneration and as our knowledge of God increases, so do our reverence of God and dread of sin. The man who fears God will fear sin!
“Give me one hundred preachers who fear nothing but sin, and desire nothing but God…. Such alone will shake the gates of hell and set up the kingdom of heaven on Earth.”—John Wesley