As my husband’s fortieth birthday approached (it’s been a while!), I spent several months putting together a scrapbook to commemorate the milestone. I asked Wayne’s mom to send baby pictures, and I contacted his friends from childhood and early adult years to send photos and greetings. He loved the gift!
In the book of Malachi, the people who chose to fear God, also made a special book – or scroll – to record how they felt about God. Here’s the account:
16 Then those who feared the Lord talked with each other, and the Lord listened and heard. A scroll of remembrance was written in his presence concerning those who feared the Lord and honored his name. 17 “On the day when I act,” says the Lord Almighty, “they will be my treasured possession. I will spare them, just as a father has compassion and spares his son who serves him. 18 And you will again see the distinction between the righteous and the wicked, between those who serve God and those who do not. Malachi 3:16-18, NIV
These God-fearers were a remnant within a remnant, just a portion of the people God brought back to Jerusalem from exile in Babylon. They made a conscious choice to take a stand for God and honor His name in the midst of a culture that was simply going through the motions of religion. Sound at all familiar?
God responded with pleasure. He inclined His ear to their commitment and claimed them as His “treasured possession.” He made a promise to spare them when He comes in judgment.
Scripture presents “godly fear” as the proper response to our holy God. Here’s some other promises found in the book of Psalms God makes to those who fear Him:
- He will confide in them (Ps 25:14)
- He will bestow His goodness on them (Ps 31:19)
- His eyes will be on them to help them (Ps 33:18-19)
- He will treat them with compassion (Ps 103:13)
- He will be their helper and protector (Ps 115:11)
- He will fulfill their desires, hear their cries, and save them (Ps 145:19)
And this is only a sampling of the blessings promised to those who fear God. Have you ever made a choice to fear God? Do you long to be God’s treasured possession?
Let’s talk: Do you fear God? What does it mean to “fear God?”