put the fear of God in

put the fear of God in(to) someone

Fig. to frighten someone severely; [for something] to shock someone into contrite behavior. A near miss like that really puts the fear of God into you. Yes, it puts the fear of God in you.
See also: fear, god, of, put
References in classic literature ?
This little weapon's sure put the fear of God in his heart.
Tis him that'll put the fear of God in their rotten black hearts.
As for his own heart attack, ``It put the fear of God in me,'' said Lasorda.
attorney in San Diego, meets with new border agents, and ``we put the fear of God in them,'' she said.