Fear God, and keep his commandments.
— ECCLESIASTES 12:13b
Most of the time when we hear the word “fear” we think of being very afraid of something. But that is not what fear means here. To fear God means to love and respect God.
Love and respect for God is like love and respect for our parents. If there is a father who is very kind and gentle to his child, do you think that child would try to hurt his father’s feelings by doing naughty things all the time, making his father sad and upset? No, if that child truly loves his kind and gentle father, he will try to please him and do what is right and good. If the child does something wrong, he will feel so bad for hurting his dear father that he will come with a heavy heart and tears to tell him he is sorry for what he did. This is to “fear” our parents. God commands us to fear our parents in His holy law. He says in the fifth commandment, “Honor thy father and thy mother.”
God is so good to His children that He gives them everything they need: food, clothing, and a home to live in. If they come into trouble or hard times, they ask God for help. He says in His word, “And call upon me in the day of trouble: I will deliver thee, and thou shalt glorify me” (Psalm 50:15). Above all, He gives them His Word, the Bible, and His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ. Because of Christ, who is their Savior, they learn to love and respect God as a heavenly Father. This should make us eager to be God’s children, so that we ask Him, “Oh Lord, make me one of Thy blessed children.”
Ask the Lord to give you this fear of God in your heart so that you will be sad and repent when you sin against His commandments. There are ten of these commandments. Ask your father or mother to read them to you from Exodus 20. They command us to love God more than anyone else and to love our neighbor as much as we love ourselves.
God’s Alphabet for Life: Devotions for Young Children
by Joel R. Beeke and Heidi Boorsma