It is a curious thing, but true that even we professors (those who profess, not teachers) Christ can more easily be frightened of the knowledge of other people rather than the knowledge of God:
Examine what affections we have to God: for it is affection that makes a Christian. Single out some few that we are most offending in. As, first, for fear, it may shame us all. Indeed, a Christian upon his best resolution is better. But the ordinary carriage of men is, they fear men more than God; they fear everything more than him that they should fear above all. For instance, is the retired carriage of men to God such as their carriage is to the eye of the world? Will not they do that in secret ofttimes that they will not do openly? In secret they will commit this or that sin, and think, Who seeth? There are secret abominations in the closet of their hearts. They will not fear to do that in the eye of God, that they fear to do in the eye of a child of six years old, that is of any discretion. Is this to make God our God, when we fear the eye of a silly mortal creature more than the eye of God, that is ten thousand times brighter than the sun, that is our judge? Is God our God the whiles? Undoubtedly, when God is made our God, there is an awe of the eye of heaven upon a man in all places. Therefore this is the condition of the covenant, ‘Walk before me,’ or ‘Walk as in my sight,’ 1 Sam. 2:30. How do we walk before God as in his sight, when there is such a great deal of difference in our carriage secretly, and before the eyes of men? when we labour more to approve our carriage to men, than we make conscience of our spirits to God? This may shame us. Even the best of us who are in covenant with God, and have made God our God, we have cause to be abased for this: and surely one of the best ways to make God’s children abased and humbled, is to compare the different proportion of their carriage; how they carry themselves to men whom they respect, and to outward things in the world, and how they carry themselves to God. If God be our God, there will be an universal fear and care to please God in all times and in all places, because he is everywhere; darkness and light are all one to him.
Richard Sibbes, The Complete Works of Richard Sibbes, ed. Alexander Balloch Grosart, vol. 6 (Edinburgh; London; Dublin: James Nichol; James Nisbet and Co.; W. Robertson, 1863), 10.