Fear of God, as Martin Luther taught, is not one of imminent danger. It is more like the fear or anxiety we feel at the thought of disappointing someone we love (i.e., filial fear).
If someone is married, they are faithful to their spouse because they love them, not because the Bible teaches against adultery. In the same way, we follow God and obey his commands (v. 18) out of love for Him. Obedience is not the result of obligation.
In Psalm 103:15–18, the psalmist draws a contrast between those whose lives are like grass (v. 16), eventually withering away and ultimately forgotten, and those who fear God, with whom His love will always remain (v. 17). So what’s our motivation for being committed to work?
It’s easy to work hard when you love what you do or the people you do it with. But when you don’t, it can be torture. But either way, the motivation should be the same! Whether you walk into work with a skip in your step or step out immediately to grab coffee, work with excellence – work with holy intent – because it pleases the heart of God.
15 The life of mortals is like grass,
they flourish like a flower of the field;
16 the wind blows over it and it is gone,
and its place remembers it no more.
17 But from everlasting to everlasting
the Lord’s love is with those who fear him,
and his righteousness with their children’s children—
18 with those who keep his covenant
and remember to obey his precepts.