Genesis 15:1 – “After these things the Word of the LORD came unto Abram in a Vision, (this presents one of the four ways which God spoke to individuals in Old Testament times [Num. 12:6-8]: 1. He spoke in Visions [Amos 7:1]; 2. He spoke in Dreams [Gen. 41:1; Dan. 2:1]; 3. He revealed Himself by speaking directly to the Prophets ‘mouth to mouth’ [Num. 12:8]; and, 4. He spoke through His Word [Mat. 4:4]; [the time of the Gospels was still under Old Testament authority]), saying, Fear not, Abram (shows that fear had been present; he was afraid he would be killed by enemies before the great Promise of God could come to pass in his life, regarding a son being brought into the world, which was necessary as it regards the coming Incarnation of Christ): I am your Shield (protection), and your exceeding great Reward (the Lord was telling the Patriarch that he had his eyes too much on the Promise, instead of the Giver of the Promise; the Lord is to always be looked at as the Reward, and then the Promise is sure to come; but too often we get our eyes on the gift instead of the Giver).”
“After These Things”
The setting of every Text is extremely important when it comes to determining the meaning and purpose of that Text. In Chapter 14, we read that Abram wins a great victory over four major kings. He succeeded in freeing his nephew, Lot, from their grasp, took the possessions they had absorbed while defeating five other kings, and returned home. With the help of the Lord and a little over 300 of his personal servants, who for the most part would not have been experienced warriors, he had prevailed. There is a very good indication that Abram was fearful that these kings whom he had defeated would retaliate against him. This could possibly end his life and nullify the Promises that God had made to him regarding a Redeemer coming through his family line. Abram should not have been fearful, but like all of us, he began to doubt God’s all-encompassing Protection regarding his life and his person. Whenever this happens, a lie of the enemy seems more real to us than the Promise of God.
True Faith is not the absence of all fear it is the conquering of all fear. In this life there will be times when we experience fear. We will come face-to-face with it. Proverbs 3:25-26 says, “Be not afraid of sudden fear, neither of the desolation of the wicked, when it comes.  For the LORD shall be your confidence, and shall keep your foot from being taken.” So the Biblical evidence is that we are to conquer fear through Faith. We should ask ourselves some questions when fear attempts to grip our hearts. Has God ever let me down? Has God ever been defeated? What Promises remain for God to fulfill? Has God brought me this far to fail now? Of course not! Looking back at the times that fear has gripped my heart and soul I must say that I should have known better than to succumb to fear. Fear is an enemy of the soul. It causes us to take hasty action or debilitates the individual to stand still, to take no action at all. God, however, doesn’t throw us over at these times as some teach. Instead, over and over again in Scriptures He comforts His Servants with the Words, “Fear not! (be not afraid), neither be dismayed!” God walks with us and encourages us to let Faith rise and fear to be diminishing.
“I Am Your Shield”
The shield spoken of here is the smaller shield of the warrior. No matter from which direction the enemy strikes, this shield is easily turned to ward off the incoming blows of the enemy. God says to Abram, and as well to us, “I am your Shield.” What a comfort to realize and know that before the enemy can get to our person, our family, our ministry, or our Church, he must get by the Eternal Omnipotent God who stands guard over me at all times. At a time of great opposition, when nearly all of Israel stood ready to kill him, the attack being led by his own son Absalom, David pushed away the fear that attempted to grip his heart and declared in Psalms 3:3, “But You, O LORD , are a Shield for me; my glory, and the lifter up of mine head.” David trusted the Lord’s ability to protect him and found the rest of Faith. Sure enough, Absalom’s revolt was defeated and God brought David through victorious. He asks us to believe that He is our Shield, our Fortress, our Buckler, and our strong Tower. We run to Him in a time of adversity and we shall be safe!
“Your Exceeding Great Reward”
It’s at times like these that God teaches us a most valuable lesson, or tries to. That lesson is the true precious value of our relationship with Him! Our reward in this life is not what God does for us. It isn’t the Miracles that he performs. It’s not the new job, the new car, the raise in pay that may come our way. Our reward is not seeing family members Saved, or our ministries spreading the Gospel affectively. All these can be Blessings and we should praise God for them. However, our true Reward is the fact that God, Creator of Heaven and Earth and sea and sky and all that in them is, walks with us, talks with us, and comforts us. We have the wondrous beauty of His Person. He is our Reward. Our relationship with Him is what Jesus died to supply, first and foremost. Even if the trial I am going through doesn’t conclude in the way that I had hoped, no one can ever take away the fact that God Himself walks with me through it. He is my Reward. His Person is my Gift. His Presence is my Treasure. My friend, when we as Believers let this truth dominate our hearts and lives, we win no matter what. So, today, I choose not to fear for God Himself is my Shield. And the Lord Himself is my exceeding great Reward!