Joy is the opposite of fear

joy at ChristmasSurprisingly, courage is NOT the opposite of fear. Rather, fear is the journey towards courage.

When we read the Christmas story, the opposite of fear proves to be joy. Angels visit Zachariah, Mary and Joseph. Each time they say: Do not fear. They explain their news, and then they say that it is cause for great joy.

So you can either be joyful or fearful, but not both.

Why is Christmas so joyful? It’s more than just a feel-good, help-the-less-fortunate time of year. It’s the time that Christ lifted off our shoulders an impossible burden. Christ paid an unpayable price. The separation from God that initiated in the Garden of Eden was finally ended. Humanity can now enjoy relationship with the Heavenly Father.

In the gif, Tim Cocker gives what he calls “terrible” Christmas gifts to his kids in 2011: a banana and an onion (she thinks it’s a tiny pumpkin). But the kids are joyful.

Will be joyful or fearful this Christmas?


7 responses to “Joy is the opposite of fear

  1. What about the verse that says perfect love casts out fear? (1 John 4:15-18)

    • Yes, that is good too! So perfect love is also an antonym for fear. But I focused in this post on the Christmas narrative. There are words with completely different antonyms. Another is “with.” One antonym is “against,” and another is “without.” Thanks for commenting.

  2. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom! “fear” meaning awe and respect. Luther wrote, “We are to so fear and love God…” Odd combination, but I think of my father, I had awe and respect for him s a child and total love. It took awhile to discover he could not fix everything or do everything, but by then the respect and love had already cemented the relationship!

  3. “Thank you Lord for making relationship with Father God a possibility. I can scarcely comprehend the enormity of such a relationship.”

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