Fear is a sickness…

Fear is a sicknessLast night I watched Mel Gibson’s new movie Apocalypto with a friend.

I thought the movie was a little weird, but there was one sequence that really intrigued me.

A band of hunters comes face to face with a tribe of people who are fleeing their homelands. The leader of the hunters and the hero of the story becomes really concerned and can’t shake the effect of the encounter. Finally his father, the wise elder, asks him what he saw on the fleeing tribe. His son thinks of the dirt and blood, but his father tells him it was “fear.”

The father says they were infected with fear. That it was hanging all over them. He then says, “Fear is a sickness.”

That phrase stuck. From my experience, fear is a sickness. It takes over. It makes us act and think irrationally.

The picture of Jesus’ disciples sitting in a hidden room fearing the Romans and the religious authorities after Jesus’ death came to mind. When Jesus entered that room fear was hanging over this once over-confident tribe.

So his first words were, “Fear not!”

This is our struggle as Christians… to truly believe that we need not fear, Christ is with us.

I think this is why the 4th verse of Psalm 23 is so powerful. It expresses the reality that we are prone to fear, but that we need not fear:

Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.

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