Fear: Duane W.H. Arnold, PhD

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41 Responses

  1. Mike E. says:

    You put it perfectly that fear is “the currency of our time.” The entire presidential campaign is soaked with fear and the campaigns purposefully stoking and exploiting people’s fears. I like how the Apostle John explains it..fear brings torment. I’ve struggled with an anxiety disorder for much of my life, so fear has been a constant companion. But so has Jesus been a constant companion. Always soothing my fears, comforting me and encouraging me. Like the teacher in your story, He sees beyond all that and like Tillich’s writing, I have heard Him say, “you are accepted.” The grace I’ve been shown far outweighs all the pain from fear I continue to experience. To be accepted by the One who is greater than I is truly the highlight of my life. Fantastic article, Duane. Thank you.

  2. Duane Arnold says:

    Mike E.

    Many thanks! Grace and love are greater than fear, indeed…

  3. Martin Luther's Disciple says:

    I think we may live in agitation more than fear. I have not had cable TV in over 4 years. No FOX, no CNN etc.
    I am visiting my Sacramento area family. My hotel has cable. Flipping around I note that their sole purpose is to keep the viewers agitated and I guess in fear.
    My alternative is to watch infomercials. Have you ever seen or heard of the generator GENERAC? Pretty cool and Chuck Norris peddling exercise equipment.

    Get rid of cable and live the more peaceful life.

  4. One question on the current fear sweeping the Church is this:
    Does the following situation represent
    an Evaaangelical, fear based cognitive dissonance?

    1. Judge Barrett is reportedly a member of a Catholic community, The People of Praise.
    2. Judge Barrett is claimed to be influenced in her ideology by religious teachings, those being Catholic.
    3. Judge Barrett would arguably be under the spiritual headship of the Vatican.
    4. The Westminster Confession identified the Pontiff as the anti-Christ.

    Chapter 25. O the Church
    Section 6.) There is no other head of the Church but the Lord Jesus Christ.(1) Nor can the Pope of Roe, in any sense, be head thereof; (but is that Antichrist, that man of sin, and son of perdition, that exalteth himself in the church against Christ, and all that is called God.(2)

  5. filbertz says:

    the article is timely and important, insightful and prescriptive, and both personal and broadly applicable. That was a mouthful. I would posit that fear in your examples isn’t either /or, but both/and. I, to borrow MLD’s preferred terminology, am agitated by both T & B, the virus and the vaccine, antifa(rt) and proud wannaboys. I also suggest that the reverse is true–fear repels love, it insulates and resists love–and therefore we have the strong terminology in your scripture that perfect love “casts out” fear. Not to oppose your conclusions–just interacting with your ideas. Thanks again–filistine.

  6. filbertz says:

    the thought never crossed my mind. The politicization of the court is much more troubling to me than the issue you raised. In general, I have sensed a more generous tone toward the Catholic branch in recent years and the rhetoric from evangelicals far less frequent. I would hope that trend continues. The evangelical system has enough mud on its fenders to stop casting it Rome-ward.

  7. Martin Luther's Disciple says:

    Nathan, the Lutheran Confessions also identify the Pope / the Papacy as the anti Christ.

    Religion should not enter the SCOTUS discussion. I don’t think anyone questioned RBG’s membership in a religious cult that requires you to cut off the foreskin of a baby to be presented to your god. (much more weird than anything the new nominee’s cult does)

  8. Duane Arnold says:


    I think evangelicals and RCs will have an alliance of convenience… although neither really understands the other. It is the ethic of pragmatism.

  9. Duane Arnold says:


    “I also suggest that the reverse is true–fear repels love, it insulates and resists love…”

    Fear, in the long run, cannot empower…

  10. Xenia says:

    3. Judge Barrett would arguably be under the spiritual headship of the Vatican.<<<

    I hope not the current occupant of the Vatican.

  11. Duane Arnold says:


    Pope Francis is more closely aligned with Catholic Charismatics than any previous pope. Barrett is connected to the Charismatic group, People of Praise…

  12. Em says:

    Agreeing with Xenia’s 9:30 am…. Some of the RC priests i have known would also

  13. Xenia says:

    Pope Francis has lost the plot.

  14. Em says:

    Some have observed that John Paul II mau have been the last Pope to understand the Faith…

  15. Duane Arnold says:


    I’m more partial to Benedict XVI…

  16. Em says:

    Well, Dr. Duane, he did have the humility and honesty to know when to step aside…. Perhaps a part of God’s plan for these times?

  17. Duane Arnold says:


    Indeed. He is also a very intellectually able and charming man…

  18. bob1 says:

    3. Judge Barrett would arguably be under the spiritual headship of the Vatican.

    FWIW, that was the anti-Catholic prejudicial POV that was common before JFK became our first Catholic president in 1960.

  19. Jean says:

    What I fear is an invoice for $70k for a hair cut.

  20. I dont consider my statement to be anti- catholic. We don’t actualy know what Judge Barrett believes other then to observe the outward appearance. And, she is associating with a devout RCC community. Whatever RCC developements currently taking place, the Holy Father is Pontifex Maximus.

    I don’t think we have to go back as far as the Reformers see a complicated Evangelical support for this nomination.

    I’ll put forward the following example. Not because of the size of following or influence, but for the creative book title.

    -Dave Hunt authored, A Woman Rides the Beast. Its a catchy mid-90’s title. Mr. Hunt’s programming was carried on CSN over a period of years.

    Lets say we had the ability to survey Mr. Hunts listeners/supporters still living in 2020. My guess is that 90% or greater would be staunch supporters of not only the Administration, but of the Nominee choices. Two of those choices happen to be Catholic. Now, 90% percent plus, is just a guess, but there’s reason for me to pick such a high percentage. You would think this would be problematic.

    I don’t see this as moral relativism. M/R would be the Access Hollywood tape. A willingness to overlook situation A ( Access) because we desire outcome B (Conservative Court Nominee). B is greater then A in a moraly relative sense, because it’s a relative matter of conscience.

    But the Confession is not exactly morally relative.

  21. Jean says:


    In an ideal world, Senators would question the candidate to assure themselves that the candidate would “judge” on the basis of the Constitution, and not on her personal religious beliefs.

    In an ideal world, the candidate would agree to serve her neighbor, in the vocation as a justice, according to the Law (i.e., the Constitution), but only in so far as it does not conflict with the Word of God.

    There is no biblical rationale for the Pope being the Word of God, the Vicar of Christ, or able to add, amend or otherwise change the Word of God. This would be a legitimate avenue of inquiry for the Senate, in a perfect world.

  22. Mike E. says:

    Really? I love Pope Francis. He reminds me of Jesus. 🤷‍♂️

  23. bob1 says:

    And, she is associating with a devout RCC community. Whatever RCC developements currently taking place, the Holy Father is Pontifex Maximus.


    Good gravy. Your logic isn’t logical. So what if the Pope is PM? How does it follow from that, that Judge Barrett has anything to do with the Vatican??

  24. Em says:

    Well i learned one thing tiday… It is judge Barrett… I thought it was Barnett. 😒
    That said, Barrett has said that the role of judge relies on interpreting the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, mot the judge’s personal faith… Will that require recusals? Dunno

  25. Bob1. All gravy aside, I’m not the one dedignating the Pope to be anything other then Pope. I was referencing the Westminster, some Reformers, more Reformers, a few centuries of history, and some recent history, broadcast over the Calvary Satelite Network. That will di for starters. That is where the Anti-Christ designation is coming from.

    I’m just trying to figure out what happened to the Confession. Is it suddenly on pause?

  26. bob1 says:


    To which Confession are you referring?

  27. Martin Luther's Disciple says:

    Nathan, the confession that the Pope is the anti Christ is not on hold – at least not on the Lutheran side. However, the fact that ACB may be a deceived follower of Christ (because of the deceptive teachings of the papacy) does not enter into her legal vocation…at all.

  28. Bob1. Westminster Confession 1646/48. See above comment in beginning of thread. MLD. Is referring to Luther’s earlier continental teachings. Both of these are wartime eras and the combatants took themselves seriously.
    If we jump forward circa 2000, the Dispensationalist version of Anti-Christ is more of an anti-Fundametalist in a tailored suit, but he is still the evil villian.

    Im just wondering what happened to the Douglas Wilsons, MacArthurs, etc? Piper?

  29. Circa 2000 meaning…Left Behind series.

  30. bob1 says:


    Historical correction — the US Presbyterians removed the AntiChrist the Confession. They, like many, recognized that the historical situation in the US to be much different than it was in Europe at the time of the Reformation.


  31. bob1 says:

    Should be, “AntiChrist paragraph from the Confession.”

  32. Captain Kevin says:

    Thank you, Duane. This is powerful. I’ve spent a lifetime letting fear of inadequacy keep me from so much. The corpses of lost opportunities and ruined relationships cover the roads I’ve traveled. I have nothing but grace to uphold me now.

  33. -Philidephia 1742. AntiChrist.
    -Charleston 1767. AntiChrist.
    -Philidelphia 1788. Not specified. A colon is changed to a period and the AntiChrist discription etc. is not discussed.
    -New Hampshire 1830. Confession format is changed. Mentions only Church Officers are Bishop, Pastor and Deacon. No retraction of 1689 is mentioned.
    -Second London Confession finds new appeal in the Southern States in Second half of 1800’s. (Tom Nettles- Founders Ministries)

    I think it’s less then clear if the Pontif is or is not AntiChrist in the US, or was only a European version prior to 1789.
    One thing is clear, I have not personaly heard any Reform Baptist raise any concerns.

  34. Duane Arnold says:

    Captain Kevin

    “I have nothing but grace to uphold me now…”

    Given the options, better to trust in grace than anything else.

  35. Em says:

    Dr. Duane @ 2:50 am
    Amen, amen amen….
    I seem to remember a hymn that says, among other praises, Grace – “tis music in the ear… ”
    This summer is one that i pray the Church never goes through again… “Tis grace that brought us safe thus far and (God’s) grace will lead us home.”
    Lord, You know I’m going to need grace today… Thanking You in advance.. . 🙏 😇
    God keep all who visit here today

  36. Babylon's Dread says:

    ‘Afraid to talk’ is exactly the point. I remember when fear of decrying homosexual behavior crept into my conscious thoughts when standing to preach. It wasn’t profound mind you but it was very clear and present. Now there is an implicit intimidation when speaking about marriage, gender, race, and the race intimidation includes a vast array of new definitions. Political correctness was sold as manners but really it was speech intended to shift the power structures. It is working. You’re damned right there is fear.

    If the intent of the article is that there is nothing to fear then it falls on deafness. Anyone who has seen the monstrous nature of humanity knows there is indeed a reason to tremble. The admonitions of our faith to not fear are an equal and opposite antidote but only in the souls of those who have prepared themselves to face imminent death. Death is the ultimate fear and the means of death is its’ lieutenant.

    In the body politic the 20th century provided all the evidence we need that there are plenty of reasons to fear the shifting thought patterns of a culture.

    Drew Brees spoke of standing for the national anthem and he was cowed immediately only to wear the name of a likely rapist and child kidnapper as an homage to a worldview he hates but cannot withstand. There is a micro photo of our immediate situation. Fear? We can overcome it with our faith – unto death. We can also overcome it by refusing to bow.

    Duane your wonderful testimony and surprise ending both heartens and resolves the matter. By the grace of God we will not be afraid or intimidated or silent. That is my application.

  37. Duane Arnold says:


    Many thanks… I truly believe that it is only grace and love that will enable us to say the words that lie hidden within us and those words, born of grace and love, will express that self-same grace and love in what we say to others.

  38. bob1 says:

    Whatever RCC developements currently taking place, the Holy Father is Pontifex Maximus.

    One other thought here: currently a majority of the current Supreme Court justices are Roman Catholic.

    Do we need to be fearful of this? Are they taking orders from Rome?

    No and no.

  39. Jean says:


    Many American Catholics are probably similar to Protestants in spiritualizing their faith. The new candidate may be like that or she may be a true believer. A relevant question for her would be: If faced with a case that in which the law was contrary to her faith, would she vote with her faith or would she recuse herself? I think that’s a fair question.

  40. Duane Arnold says:

    BTW, Joe Biden is RC as well…

  41. Headless Unicorn Guy says:

    Ever notice this immediately turned into “NO POPERY!” and Pope = ANTICHRIST!

    The Treaty of Westphalia ended the Reformation Wars in 1648.
    Looks like some still haven’t heard the news.

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