First of all, yesterday I typed a massive continuation of my last post. It was filled with witty yet pertinent observations but when I tried to post it.....DELETED! So i'll try to not be bitter the second time around but this won't be as good.
So, when thinking about fearing God a couple weeks ago I came up with an analogy, then later I decided that analogy wasn't the best way to think about things. So what i'm going to do is provide my initial analogy then explain why it is garbage. Here we go....
Fearing God to me was a lot like when my Father would ask me to empty the trash throughout the house the night before it was collected. "Adam, empty all the trash and take it out to the curb before I get back from (instert errand/task/meeting here)." Chances are I was probably lying around watching something stupid on MTV and i'd mutter "ok".
Time elapsed and Dad arrived back home with the trash not done. He would be rightly aggitated about me not doing the trash, however I think somewhere deep down he admired my consistancy in NOT doing what he asked in a timely manner.
After a couple cycles of this Dad decided to up the ante a little bit. Suddenly the conversation looked more like this: "Adam, empty all the trash and take it out to the curb by the time I get back or (insert punishment here)." Suddenly, I was much more zealous in my removal of the trash from their various receptacles throughout the house!
To me, doing the trash in a timely fashion was better than the consequences that would follow if I did not. 5 minutes of chores right now is better than having to come home on Friday at 6 or some other inventive inscentive from my Pops. (inventive inscentive could be a really indie band name eh?)
You see my Dad recognized that I was shallow enough to need a punishment to do my cleaning duty. It wasn't enough to do the trash just because he asked, I needed a reason. Because without that fear of punishment I knew I would suffer no consequences and thus really didn't care when the trash got done.
This is how I viewed fearing God. Not exactly deep stuff here eh? But I thought the threat of Hell was enough to get us humans motivated to live right because we did not want to suffer for eternity. Even if it's inconvienient sometimes the Fear of God will propell us to do good things.
Emptying the trash when my Dad asked me=Following God and Punishment for not doing so=Going to hell.