Second Timothy 1:7 is one of my favorite scriptures when it comes to overcoming anxiety and panic attacks. When I was asked to speak on this scripture I realized God gave us a remedy for all kinds of fear in just this one verse.
“For God has not given us the spirit of fear, but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.” 2 Timothy 1:7
When Paul spoke this to Timothy it was to encourage him because people like them were getting killed for preaching the gospel. Paul was reminding Timothy that he doesn’t have to let the Spirit of Fear control him because Jesus conquered death already. His life and his death were secured in Jesus.
Paul wasn’t telling Timothy not to be afraid. He was telling him not to let the spirit of fear have any authority over him. Being afraid is a good thing. God created fear to save our lives.
Fear triggers the flight response in our bodies, which tells us something isn’t right so get out of there.
Three steps to overcome the spirit of fear:
However, when the Spirit of Fear sets in, it’s goal is to destroy our lives. Paul didn’t say God has not given you fear. He said God has not given you the Spirit of Fear.
When we speak of the Spirit of a thing, we’re talking about the personality and character of a thing, how it operates, what power and authority it holds, whether for good or bad. We’re talking about the influence it has over us.
The Spirit of Fear torments us. It keeps us from fulfilling our destiny. It keeps us tied to the past instead of moving forward. It keeps us stagnant. It keeps us from loving ourselves and others the way God intended.
It brings on hopelessness, like nothing good will ever happen to us or when it does it won’t last. It makes us selfish and selfish people can’t love anyone else. It makes us unstable in our minds, which causes us to be unstable in all of our ways. It causes us to be like Job, expecting the thing that he feared the most to happen to him.
The Spirit of Fear eats at us little by little, causing us to grow weaker and weaker until we no longer want to fight. When that happens it completely controls us. We begin to see we are fearful of things we were never afraid of before like people who become claustrophobic out of nowhere.
But like anything in the Word of God, there is always a remedy to the problem. Paul gives Timothy a 3-Step Process for getting rid of the Spirit of Fear.
Step 1: Walk in the Spirit of Power
The first thing God gives us is the Spirit of Power. The Greek word for power means, “inherent power, power residing in a thing by virtue of its nature; the power for performing miracles; to be capable and strong.”
When we accepted Jesus as our Savior we received the Holy Spirit to guide us in our new way of life. With the Holy Spirit comes power according Acts 1:8. So His power resides in us and all the things Jesus did we can do.
The Spirit of Power gives us the ability to destroy the Spirit of Fear. The first thing to do is to decide that is what we want. We don’t have to allow fear to rule our lives anymore. We don’t have to stay stuck. Then we must tell that spirit to go in Yeshua’s (Jesus) name. It doesn’t have any rights in our lives. Finally, we need to ask the Holy Spirit to reign boldly in us.
This will allow us to walk into the next step.
Step 2: Walk in the Spirit of Love
1 John 4:18 says, “There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear; because fear has torment. He that fears is not made perfect in love.”
When we get rid of the Spirit of Fear, we are free to love ourselves and others in a genuine way. We’re free to be like our Father in heaven who is Love.
When we operate out of the Spirit of Love we’re not thinking about what we’re going to get in return when we do something. We’re not looking back thinking about all that we gave or the ways we’ve helped others, only to get slapped in the face for it. We’re not mistreating people or refusing to help them based on what someone else did to us in the past. When we do that we are actually walking in the Spirit of Fear.
Instead we’re everyone a chance in the Spirit of Love because we know our Father has done it and we want to be like Him. We’re doing it because we want others to know they are loved in spite of just like God loves us in spite of.
So we must daily ask ourselves if what we did was in the right spirit. Were our motives right or were we afraid of the outcome? Were we afraid of their reaction?
If we’re not sure, the last step will help us to be more consistent.
Step 3: Walk in a Sound and Disciplined Mind
Romans 12:2 tells us not to be conformed to this world, but to be transformed by renewing our minds so that we can prove what is the good and acceptable and perfect will of God.
In order to keep our deliverance from the Spirit of Fear we have to renew our minds daily. We have to meditate on the Word of God day and night until it transforms our thinking.
We have to focus on the good like Philippians 4:8 says,
“Finally, brothers, whatever things are true, honest, just, pure, lovely and of good report, if anything is excellent or praiseworthy – think on these things.”
We have to consciously push away negative thoughts, especially the ones that make us afraid in the slightest way. When negative thoughts come replace it with a positive one and keep repeating that to yourself throughout the day.
When we do this we will create a secure and stable mindset. We will have self-control and become disciplined in our thinking and in our ways. We will be restored to our senses and the Spirit of Fear will no longer have a foothold in our lives.
Remember, no matter what you go through God always has a remedy for you in His Word.