“There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love.” (1 John 4:18 NKJV).
There are few things in life that are totally incompatible. Love and fear are certainly contrastive and incompatible. It is absolutely impossible to have both together at the same time. Where there is love, there is no fear; and where there is fear, there is no love.
John clearly states, “There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love.” (1 John 4:18 NKJV).
Why then are many people today who claim to be in love still bound by fear?
It is simply because natural, erotic or sexual love is not strong enough to cast out fear and deliver any soul from the torment or anguish of fear!
Then, what kind of love can totally eliminate fear and deliver human soul from the torment or anguish of fear?
The love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord (Rom. 8:39)!
The Scripture clearly reveals that it is only the divine and perfect love (the love of God which is in Christ Jesus) that can serve as the perfect cure or antidote for fear, drive out fear, and deliver human soul from the bondage and torment of fear.
John testifies, “Love has in it no element of fear; but perfect love drives away fear, because fear involves pain, and if a man gives way to fear, there is something imperfect in his love.” (1 John 4:18 WNT).
According to God’s Word, if there is any element or trace of fear of anything in your mind, it is a sure indication that you are not experiencing or walking in divine and perfect love.
Divine and perfect love has no element of fear in it. When you receive, experience, and operate in God’s kind of love, fear will have no place in your heart; for perfect love drives away fear.
There are four Greek words translated as “love” in the Bible.
Let us consider them for deeper understanding of what the Bible means by “perfect love”.
First, Eros (intimate or romantic love): This speaks of sexual or erotic love, or the feelings of arousal that are shared between two people who are physically attracted to each other.
Second, Phileo (brotherly love): This word speaks of the warm affection shared between family and friends.
Third, Storge (affection or fondness): This word speaks of family love, the bond among mothers, fathers, sisters and brothers. It is also describes a sexual relationship between two people that gradually grew out of a friendship.
Fourth, Agape (sacrificial or selfless love): This is the Greek word that is often translated “love” in the New Testament. It refers to the perfect, divine, unconditional, self-sacrificing, active, volitional, and thoughtful love of God for humans.
The highest and perfect expression or demonstration of Agape is the sacrificial death of Jesus Christ on the cross for our sins.
The Scripture amply states this truth.
1 John 4:
9 In this the love of God was manifested toward us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through Him.
10 In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins. (NKJV).
1 John 3:
16 By this we know love, because He laid down His life for us. And we also ought to lay down our lives for the brethren. (NKJV).
Agape is the very nature of God, for God is love. This is the kind of love that is poured into the heart of every believer by the Holy Spirit at the new birth (Rom. 5:5).
All believers are therefore expected to demonstrate this perfect and divine love towards God and people including their enemies (John 3:16, Rom. 5:5, 1 John 3:16, 4:7-12, Matt. 5:43-48).
It is only the “Agape” (God’s kind of love) that is perfect and thus potent or powerful to cast out fear and neutralize, counter and destroy its devastating effects upon human souls.
Where ever God’s love reigns, fear cannot reign! For “There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love.” (1 John 4:18 NKJV).
When anyone receives God’s love into his heart and begin to walk in the understanding of the divine and perfect love that he has received, his heart will be completely set free from the torment of his past mistakes, his apprehension about life, his anxiety about the unknown future, and his fear of death or any kind of evil.
Why then are many believers today still fearful and living under the torment of fear?
Lack of the spiritual understanding, revelation or experiential knowledge of God’s love which is in Christ Jesus!
Fear is an indication that you are not totally secured, grounded and settled in God’s love. When you know, believe and understand that you are unconditionally loved by God and completely acceptable to God in Christ Jesus, fear will lose its grip on your life.
You are fearful, worried, anxious, or troubled about things because you are not sure that God loves and accepts you in Christ Jesus unconditionally and completely.
When you know that God loves you and that God is for you and that God is working out all things together for you, you will not fear or be troubled in spite of the roaring or threat of the devil.
Like the Psalmist, when you are secure in the love which God has for you in Christ Jesus, even though you may walk through the valley of the shadow of death, yet you will fear no evil; for you know that God loves you and that God will never leave you nor forsake you (Psa. 23:4).
Beloved, if you are always fearful, restless, anxious, or troubled about life or death, you are yet to be rooted and grounded in the love of Christ.
When you begin to acknowledge, experience, and appropriate the love of Christ which surpasses all intellectual knowledge or mental understanding, fear will be completely driven out of your heart because God’s love cannot co-inhabit with fear in your soul.
When you are secure in God’s love for you in Christ Jesus, you will boldly declare with the Psalmist, “God is our refuge and strength, A very present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, Even though the earth be removed, And though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea; Though its waters roar and be troubled, Though the mountains shake with its swelling. Selah.” (Psa. 46:1-3 NKJV).
You will also be able to confidently declare, “The LORD is on my side; I will not fear. What can man do to me?” (Psa. 118:6 NKJV). “The LORD is my helper; I will not fear. What can man do to me?” (Heb. 13:6 NKJV).
Prayer: My Dear Heavenly Father, thank You for demonstrating Your perfect love to me in Christ and through Christ. My Dear Holy Spirit, teach and help me to understand and walk increasingly in God’s perfect and unconditional love for me in Christ Jesus, in Jesus’ name. Amen.