Fear, Anxiety, and Panic (Part 3) - Anxiety (Part B)


Fear, Anxiety, and Panic (Part 3) - Anxiety (Part B) 4. The Bible refers to anxiety as care (Eze 4:16; Mat 13:22; 1Co 7:21; 1Pe 5:7). A. Care n. – 1. a. Mental suffering, sorrow, grief, trouble. 2. Burdened state of mind arising from fear, doubt, or concern about anything; solicitude, anxiety, mental perturbation; also in pl. anxieties, solicitudes. B. Care v. – 2. To be troubled, uneasy, or anxious. C. The care of this world can choke the word of God in our lives (Mat 13:22). i. Mark’s gospel renders it “the cares of this world” (Mar 4:19). a. The cares of this world (concerns, things that need tended to, etc.) can cause care (anxiety). (i) Reading and studying the Bible is difficult when a man is filled with anxiety. (ii) Why do you think Satan wants us filled with anxiety and fear, and therefore entices us have too many cares? b. Over 40 million Americans suffer with anxiety (John Delony, Refining Anxiety, p. 4). c. It is little wonder that this is the case due to the fast-paced, always-running life style many Americans have wherein they do not get enough sleep, eat garbage, live on coffee and energy drinks, drive in hectic rush hour traffic, work long hours, consume gloom and doom news, and spend hours per day on social media. ii. The care of this world is also linked with the deceitfulness of riches (Mat 13:22). a. Riches can be a source of anxiety (Ecc 5:12). b. Wealth requires a lot of attention if it is to be maintained and held onto (Pro 27:23-24). c. Many people live hectic lives because of the desire for more money and the things it can buy. iii. The care of this world is likened unto thorns (Mat 13:22). a. Thorn n. - 1. A stiff, sharp-pointed, straight or curved woody process on the stem or other part of a plant; a spine, a prickle. 2. fig. (or in fig. context): Anything that causes pain, grief, or trouble; in various metaphors, similes, and proverbial expressions, as a thorn in the flesh or side, a constant affliction, a source of continual grief, trouble, or annoyance; (to be, sit, stand, walk) on thorns (a thorn), (to be, etc.) in a painful state of anxiety or suspense. b. Could care (anxiety) have been Paul’s thorn in the flesh (2Co 12:7)? (i) The thorn in Paul’s flesh was the messenger of Satan, who, as a roaring lion, uses fear to try to destroy us (1Pe 5:8). (ii) Paul certainly dealt with a lot of stressful and fearful situations in his life (2Co 11:23-29). (iii) He admitted to having fears within himself (1Co 2:3; 2Co 7:5). (iv) He associated his weakness with fear and trembling (1Co 2:3). 1. In response to Paul’s prayer for God to take away his thorn in the flesh, God replied that His strength is made perfect in weakness (2Co 12:9). 2. In connection with his thorn in the flesh and God’s strength being made perfect in his weakness (2Co 12:7-9), Paul wrote that he took pleasure in distresses (2Co 12:10). 3. Distress v. – 4. To cause pain, suffering, agony, or anxiety to; to afflict, vex, make miserable. (v) Being in high-stress situations can cause anxiety attacks later on in time. (vi) Anyone who has ever suffered with anxiety knows that it is a major thorn in the flesh. 5. The Bible refers to anxiety as being troubled. A. Definitions i. Troubled ppl. - 1. Physically agitated; of the sea, sky, etc., stormy; of water, wine, etc., stirred up so as to diffuse the sediment, made thick or muddy, turbid. 2. Disturbed; disquieted; disordered; agitated; afflicted. ii. Disquieted ppl. adj. – Disturbed; rendered uneasy or restless. a. Restless adj. – 1. a. Deprived of rest; finding no rest; esp. uneasy in mind or spirit. b. Uneasy adj. – 1. Not conducing to ease or comfort; productive of physical discomfort. b. Causing mental discomfort for disquietude; unpleasant, disagreeable. c. Characterized by absence of ease or comfort; suggesting or manifesting want of ease in body or mind. c. Uneasiness n. – 3. Discomfort, trouble, or anxiety, as affecting one’s circumstances or welfare. c. Mental discomfort; anxiety, apprehension. iii. Anxiety n. – 1. The quality or state of being anxious; uneasiness or trouble of mind about some uncertain event; solicitude, concern. iv. Anxious adj. – 1. a. Troubled or uneasy in mind about some uncertain event; being in painful or disturbing suspense; concerned, solicitous. 2. a. Fraught with trouble or solicitude, distressing, worrying. v. Solicitude n. – 1. The state of being solicitous or uneasy in mind; disquietude, anxiety; care, concern. vi. Solicitous adj. – 1. Full of care or concern; anxious, apprehensive, disquiet. 2. Troubled, anxious, or deeply concerned, on some specified account. B. Being troubled is being in a state of fear (Mat 14:26; Luk 1:12; Luk 24:37-38; Joh 14:27; 1Pe 3:14) and sometimes painful fear (Psa 48:5-6). C. There are many examples of men being troubled (suffering with anxiety) in the Bible. D. No man is exempt from suffering with anxiety. i. Pharaoh was troubled (had anxiety) in his spirit because of a disturbing dream (Gen 41:8). ii. Nebuchadnezzar was troubled by a dream which kept him from sleep (Dan 2:1; Dan 4:5). iii. If two of the most powerful kings who have ever lived suffered with anxiety, so can the rest of us. E. David described many of the characteristics of anxiety in Psalm 38. i. David was troubled because of his sin for which he was being punished (Psa 38:1-5), but the symptoms of anxiety are the same, regardless of the cause. ii. David experienced the following as a result of being troubled in mind (Psa 38:6a). a. He was bowed down (in heaviness, depressed) and went about mourning all the day (Psa 38:6b). b. He was feeble (weak) and broken in spirit (Psa 38:8a). c. His heart was disquieted (deprived of quietness, peace, or rest; anxious, restless, uneasy) (Psa 38:8b). d. His heart panted (heavy breathing) (Psa 38:10a). e. His strength failed (mental and physical weakness) (Psa 38:10b). f. The light of his eyes was gone (his joy was gone, and the concern, fear, and worry were visible on his face) (Psa 38:10c c/w Pro 15:30 c/w Psa 6:7; Eze 27:35; Dan 7:28). F. Joseph’s brothers were troubled (had anxiety), which was so powerful that it prevented them from speaking when they realized that their brother whom they had sold into slavery was the ruler of Egypt (Gen 45:3). i. Severe anxiety will prevent a man from speaking (Psa 77:4). ii. Sometimes talking about what is worrying oneself with a wise and trusted person can help to allay one’s fears. a. It’s necessary to find someone you can trust to talk with. b. It’s also important to find someone who can handle your heart being poured out to. (i) Some people cannot handle that. (ii) They get uncomfortable and want to leave the conversation or change the subject. c. A word of advice. (i) If someone is opening up to you, it’s because he wants to. (ii) Don’t respond with “you don’t have to talk about it.” (iii) Don’t assume that talking about it will make the person sad or worse off. (iv) Just listen with empathy and understanding. iii. There is a time to keep silence and a time to speak (Ecc 3:7), so when you are able to speak, find someone who will be helpful to talk to.
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