“And now, Israel, hwhat does the LORD your God require of you, but ito fear the LORD your God, ... to love him ... for your good? (Deuteronomy 10:12-13)
Fear and love, together. How?
It’s hard to offer a great analogy of this because there’s no one we relate to that’s like God.
So, for a moment, take out the relational and think of how you would feel about a fire in the woods on a cold winter night. It’s what will cook your food and warm you up. At the same time, it will burn you if you put your hand in it. Love and fear, together.
A little more relational but still falling short is this: You’re walking down a dark street, going to your car, the street light is out. You hear steps behind you. You’re nervous. But then a police officer turns the corner right by your car. You feel relief and appreciation for that officer. You get into your car, you get on the highway, you look in the rearview mirror and you see a police car. All of a sudden you’re afraid. Am I going too fast? Did I use my signal when I changed lanes? Love and fear, together.
Now God. He’s a consuming fire. Fearing God is more than respect and reverence. It is that, but it’s also fear. He’s a consuming fire. You may say, “I don’t fear MY God.” Okay.
Yahweh. The God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. God in three persons: Father, Son, Holy Spirit. This God, if you know him and know about him, you fear him. And you love.