The Fear of the Lord and the Satisfied Life

A Whoever keeps the commandment keeps his life (v. 16a).

A1  The fear of the Lord leads to life, and whoever has it rests satisfied; he will not be visited by harm (v. 23).

A and A1 give parallel meanings. To keep God’s command is the same as the fear of God. To obey God’s commands is to fear God. To fear God is to obey God’s commands.

Both lead to life—the satisfied life. The word, “satisfied” (Heb. ’abea), means, “to be satisfied by nourishment, or abounding” (TWOT) in God’s favor.

The word is also translated, “full.” Thus, in Ex. 30:8, the Lord gave manna to Israel in “full” [abea]. In Gen. 25:8, Abraham dies old and “full of years.” Positively, the satisfied life is the life lived full of God’s favor. Negatively, however, the same word, abea, means, full of trouble. Job 14:1, “Man who is born of a woman is full [abea] of trouble.”

Now compare the words, “die” in A, and “harm” in A1. To despise God’s commands is to die. To not fear God is to bring harm to your life. But to obey God’s commands is to live. To fear God is to live the satisfied life.

Thus, to die is to live an unsatisfied and unfilled, empty life. It is to live a life full of trouble, lacking the favor of God. To not fear God is to bring trouble to yourself.

Do you desire to live a satisfied life in the favor of God? Then fear God today!

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