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Kill The Voice of Fear, by Elder Mo Babajide-Alabi

I have heard this said many times, that age is just numbers. This may be true to some extent, but age prepares you also for more than what any education can give you, I have come to realise that with old age comes more responsibilities. With Eldership come more responsibilities that will most times take you out of your comfort zone into territories you have never charted before. We, as  elders are peacemakers, prayer warriors, teachers, leaders by example, and we are decision makers. May God continue to make us responsible elders in our times in Jesus name.

Peter speaking in 1 Peters 5: 1-4 admonished us – “To the elders among you, I appeal as a fellow elder and a witness of Christ’s sufferings who also will share in the glory to be revealed: Be shepherds of God’s flock that is under your care, watching over them—not because you must, but because you are willing, as God wants you to be; not pursuing dishonest gain, but eager to serve;  not lording it over those entrusted to you, but being examples to the flock.”

So standing before you this morning is in line with carrying out one of the responsibilities of being an elder.

We all listen to voices every second of our lives. Some of the voices we hear are soft; some are loud, sultry, and sometimes brash. We hear voices of people we know, and those of complete strangers. In our sub consciousness, we identify people by their voices. So voices do play important roles in our lives.  Apostle Paul in 1 Corinthians 14:10 says – There are, it may be, so many kinds of voices in the world, and none of them is without signification. Lots of voices and sounds are seeking to get our attention. Not that this is wrong.  But what we hear or chose not to hear is critical to our successful existence on earth.

So we must get it right and allow only those voices which affect us for good. We must allow only those voices that can impact our salvation.  I will briefly run through the four main voices that we come across every day. I have mentioned two earlier on. But at the end of it all, it is important that we are able to discern the true voice of God.

The first voice that is perhaps the most obvious is our own voice. Apart from our speaking voice, we also talk to ourselves inside our heads; we see images and pictures inside our heads. And we also have the voice of the flesh, which demonstrates our emotions, feelings and desires, and so on. There is also the voice of imagination, where we visualise our thought process. We have to be careful of this voice if we are heavenly bound – Romans 8:6 says – For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. Some of the choices we make in life are determined by the inner voices. They goad us rightly or wrongly.

The second type of voice is that of other people – such as pastors, parents, friends, colleagues, neighbours etc. Sometimes people say things which are true and good, and sometimes people say things which are just the opposite. We need the help of the Holy Spirit to be able to distinguish the real from the fake. We have to be very careful of the voices we hear from other people.

The third type of voice is that of the devil. May the voice of the devil be suppressed in our lives in Jesus name. May we never hear from the devil in Jesus name. The devil has crafty ways of speaking. The portrayal of the devil in the movies is so wrong that some of us are beginning to think he is ugly, always in red suit and with a black face. No. The devil is as subtle as you can ever get. He plays on our emotions and throws thoughts into our minds to tempt our faith. He can also use the voice of other people to get on us. But with the help of the Holy Spirit we are able to overcome this. Ephesians 6:16 says Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked.

The fourth and final type of voice which is the most important is the voice of God. It is the most subtle voice you can ever hear. And because it is subtle and not brash, we may miss it in the daily commotion that is called life. It is the most important voice you need to hear because it speaks the mind of God. Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come –John 16:13.

The title of this message is Kill the Voice of Fear. That means there is a voice that feeds on our fears. Most times this voice originates from our own inner voice, from other people and from the devil. The only voice that is strong enough to suppress fear is the Voice of God.

I have heard people define Fear as False Evidence Appearing Real.  There is no definition as apt as this. Fear is cruel. It tries to tell us we’re not man enough, that we cannot possibly do certain things, that even an attempt is foolish. It places limitations on us. It taunts us by saying that we just don’t have what it takes. We don’t have enough time, skill, resources, or heart. Fear hurls rocks of self-doubt, whispering messages of danger, negativity, and shame. Fear is manipulative, using old baggage to send us on a trip to nowhere. Fear wants to prevent us from living an epic life and keep us from aiming high and breaking free.

Fear is the opposite of faith. As Christians, faith is the most lethal weapon that we have to fight fear. We can rewrite our destinies with faith. From today onwards, fear will have no place in our lives in the name of Jesus.

Let us get it. Fear is not a psychological state. It is a spirit that brings out our pasts instead of showing us our glorious futures. It is a spirit that shows us our mistakes and not our strengths. The scriptures state this in 2 Tim 1:7 – For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind. This scripture clearly states that fear is a spirit, but it is not given unto us. Because what God had gifted us are power, love and sound mind. The truth is that if we are apprehensive, we can be sure it is not from God but it’s because our focus is on ourselves and our own human resources rather than on the Lord and His fully sufficient resources.

No matter how dedicated, no matter how holy we are or how many times we pray in a day, once we give room to fear, we are done for.  We can relate to the story of Job. Job created the way for Satan by his fear. Every time we are afraid, we open the door for the devil to come. People are victims of what they fear. You are not married, yet you fear childbirth. You are employed, but everyday your thoughts revolve around getting sacked. Job fell because of fear. The scriptures recorded Job as saying in Job 3:25 – “For the thing which I greatly feared is come upon me, and that which I was afraid of is come unto me”. May we never open the door to the devil in our lives in Jesus name.

I read somewhere the other day that the words Fear Not, Be Not Afraid can be found  in the bible in 365 places. That means we can chose to reassure ourselves by each, every day of the year. After today may you never be afraid again in Jesus name.

Faith is the antidote for fear.  And by extension, faith can be extinct if we do not use it. As long as you walk by sight, fear will remain. 2 Corinthians 5:7 says “For we walk by faith, not by sight”. Because we are born again, we are saved. We are redeemed from the torture of fear. These assurances are all stated in the scriptures. Romans 8:15 says “For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father.”

Joshua 1:9 says “Have not I commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest.”

Isaiah 43:1 says “But now thus saith the Lord that created thee, O Jacob, and he that formed thee, O Israel, Fear not: for I have redeemed thee, I have called thee by thy name; thou art mine.”

Going further, Psalms 23:4 says “Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.”

Psalm 27:1 says “The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?”

Despite the assurances of these scriptures, we still fall short in our faith. Fear gives us excuses. In the past, anytime I am afraid of speaking on occasions like this, I have various excuses. The most popular is “I am a writer, not a speaker”. I kept repeating this at every opportunity. Then one day I gave a 15 minutes speech and spent 8 minutes to explain why I was going to fail, because I am writer and not a speaker. After this, I got told off by my wife and children, that I had only embarrassed myself explaining my failure rather than address the subject. This is what fear does to us.

Les Brown say – “Most people go through life quietly and safely tiptoeing to an early grave.  We’ve been holding back, we have ideas that we don’t act on, things that we want to do, we’re afraid to take chances.  A lot of people say no to things and they don’t even know what they’re saying no to!  Don’t allow fear to keep you in the corner.”

Some of us have gone far too long that we are not only afraid of the circumstances, but we are also afraid of the solutions to the circumstances. Fear makes us stay at the same point because we are familiar with our situation and we fear to explore. I know this might sound cruel, but it brings the situation to reality. Some of the victims of the Grenfell Towers probably would have survived if they had not been afraid of the solution than the circumstances. For some of them, jumping out of the building at whatever floor was the only solution. But the fear of the solution and the acceptance of the circumstances could have led to the death of some of them. This is the handiwork of the devil.

In conclusion, how can we overcome fear? I am happy to say, it is as simple as ABC. It is adequate knowledge of God’s word. Proverbs 24: 5 says “a wise man is strong; yea, a man of knowledge increaseth strength.” John 8:32 – And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.

Daniel 11:32 – And such as do wickedly against the covenant shall he corrupt by flatteries: but the people that do know their God shall be strong, and do exploits.

You cannot have God and be terrorised. Whatever you are going through right now is temporal and subject to change with adequate knowledge of the God whom you serve. 2 Peter 1:3 says – According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue.

Be of good cheer. What is making you afraid is what is making people who have adequate knowledge laugh. So why worry yourself.

PRAYER POINTS

I bind the spirit of fear in my life, in the name of Jesus Christ.

I break every evil covenant that has brought fear into my life, in the name of Jesus.

All negative doors that the spirit of fear has opened in the past, be closed now, in the name of Jesus.

In the name of Jesus, I refuse to fear, because God has not given me the spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind

The sermon, Kill The Voice of Fear, by Elder Mo Babajide-Alabi, was delivered on June 25, 2017 at the Elders Special Service.