Quick Facts

  • Pronunciation: fo-be-ro’s
  • Strongs Concordance: #5398
    • inspiring fear, terrible, formidable
    • affected with fear, timid
  • Appears 3 times in 3 verses in the New Testament
  • Common translations
    • “terrifying” (1x)

Where and how phoberos is used in the New Testament

Hebrews 10:27, 31 HCSB – “but a terrifying expectation of judgment and the fury of a fire about to consume the adversaries. … It is a terrifying thing to fall into the hands of the living God! ”
Hebrews 12:21 HCSB – “The appearance was so terrifying that Moses said, I am terrified and trembling.)”

My observations and perspective

Here we see fear used to describe a response to seeing or expecting God at work. This word is never used to describe a response to a person, and definitely not used to describe a fitting response to a person, church leader, etc.