CHAPTER 9

“Nothing Scares Me.”

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Most felons talk tough and put on a big show of being bold and fearless.  They tell themselves and others, “Nothin’ scares me, man.” They make threats or brag about violent encounters to intimidate and dominate others, but these events may never have actually happened. They block out from their minds the uneasiness that most people experience when they even think of doing something illegal. Somehow they manage to cut off those feelings of anxiety that prevent the rest of us from doing what we know is wrong.

But the truth is, criminals’ are afraid no matter what they say or how confident they act, and their fears are widespread, persistent, and intense. They are especially afraid of getting caught, injured, or being put down.

In a study of what criminals feared the most, it was found that 57% of criminals fear an armed victim even more than getting caught by the cops.  If they hear a 12-gauge shotgun being racked from behind the door, they will quickly leave.

  • 81% of interviewees agreed that a “smart criminal” will try to determine if a potential victim is armed.
  • 74% indicated that burglars avoided occupied dwellings, because of fear of being shot.  They will come in when you’re not home.
  • 57% said that most criminals feared armed citizens more than the police.
  • 40% of the felons said that they had been deterred from committing a particular crime, because they believed that the potential victim was armed.
  • 57% of the felons who had used guns themselves said that they had encountered potential victims who were armed.
  • 34% of the criminal respondents said that they had been scared off, shot at, wounded, or captured by an armed citizen.

People on the opposite side of this thinking error will respect God and his laws and turn away from evil.  Proverbs 14:16 says, “The wise fear the Lord and shun evil, but a fool is hotheaded and yet feels secure.” In other words, hotheaded fools commit crimes in a confident manner, as if no harm will ever come to them. And they gather followers (gang members) who admire their fearless lifestyle and apparent lack of accountability to anyone. We need to counsel such if they don’t fear man, they should certainly fear God. When we fear God, all other fears are settled.

1. Read Proverbs 14:16.
  a) What are the two character traits of a fool pointed out in this verse?
   
   
  b) What are the two character traits of a wise man pointed out in this verse?
   
   

2. According to Psalm 128:1, who will be blessed?
 
 

3. What three pieces of advice does the Lord give us in Proverbs 3:7?
 
 
  c)

4. Read Proverbs 9:10 and Psalm 111:10.  What is the starting place of all wisdom and knowledge?
 

5. What advice did Solomon give in Ecclesiastes 12:13 that applies to every man?
 
 

6. Solomon's definition of the fear of God in Proverbs is to hate evil. What are some corresponding actions we will demonstrate in our lives when we fear God and hate evil?
 
 
  c)

7. Read Job 1:1.  How is Job described in this verse?
 

8. Although Job was a godly man, his friends thought he must be guilty of some unconfessed sin. What did Zophar say would be the result if he would just confess and repent?
 
 
  Would this be good advice for a criminal who can’t sleep at night because of fear or a guilty conscience? Explain your answer.
  c)

9. According to the scriptures quoted above, instead of fearing a victim with a gun or the police, whom should a criminal fear?
 

10. Fearing God means to understand that there are consequences for disobedience. This is not because He is mean or vindictive, but it is simply because when we disobey, our disobedience ushers us out from under His covering of protection. His standard still stands today as a plumb line for all generations. Yet, although He is a just God, because of His mercy and compassion, ... (Romans 3:26-28)
 

11. How would you counsel a person operating under the “Nothing Scares Me” thinking error?
 

Continue to Chapter 10

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