hope and fear

Psalm 5 Verse 7. “But as for me,” etc. A blessed verse this! a blessed saying! The words and the sense itself, carry with them a powerful contrast. For there are two things with which this life is exercised, HOPE and FEAR, which are, as it were, those two springs of Judges 1:15, the one from above, the other from beneath. Fear comes from beholding the threats and fearful judgments of God; as being a God in whose sight no one is clean, every one is a sinner, every one is damnable. But hope comes from beholding the promises, and the all-sweet mercies of God; as it is written (Psalm 25:6), “Remember, O Lord, thy loving kindnesses, and thy tender mercies which have been ever of old.” Between these two, as between the upper and nether millstone, we must always be ground and kept, that we may never turn either to the right hand or to the left. For this turning is the state peculiar to hypocrites, who are exercised with the two contrary things, security and presumption. Martin Luther.