And I say to you, My friends, do not be afraid of those who kill the body, and after that have no more that they can do. But I will show you whom you should fear: Fear Him who, after He has killed, has power to cast into hell; yes, I say to you, fear Him! “Are not five sparrows sold for two copper coins? And not one of them is forgotten before God. But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Do not fear therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows. (Luke 12:4-7)
There Is Nothing To Fear
We live in perilous times. Actually, every generation lives in perilous times. The cocoon of our life is measured by what we experience and we believe these are the worst of times. Nothing has been as bad as it has been now and the world is in a worse state than ever before – is how we feel. Again, not an accurate portrayal of history as there are many times in generations past, life was much more difficult and tenuous. In all probability, there will be harder times in the future. The reality of life is what we experience today is the true normal and we must learn how to view the events of our lives in the face of our relationship with God. What happened two hundred years ago or what we fear may happen tomorrow is of no consequence. Today is all we have.
Jesus illustrates an important principle of life when He defines the character of fear. He assures the disciples that life will be filled with great uncertainty. It has always been that way and will continue until the Lord returns. Dangerous times fill the hearts of men with dread in every generation. Despots rule over people with an iron fist of cruelty. Men rise who make life hard for the masses. There are many things that men do to other men that can bring fear and dread. Regardless of what men can and will do, they are not to be feared. The persecutions in life can lead to death but this is not to be feared. In the early days of the church, many lost their lives for believing in Jesus Christ. Jesus’ words bring comfort for those who will give their life for truth and again that is okay. Christians are not to fear men because all they can do is to kill the body. There is something greater to fear.
The worst man can do to another is to kill them. All they have accomplished is to take the life from a man for a moment. Jesus reminds His followers the one to fear greater is the one who has the power to destroy both body and soul in an eternal flame. He speaks of His Father. The Lord God can destroy body and soul if a man does not fear Him. This fear is the reality that life after death can be worse than anything experienced on this earth. What man does is for a moment; what God does is without end. This fear is measured with the knowledge that man does not need to think the Lord is an avenging and angry Lord who will destroy at any whim.
The child of God should know the Father cares deeply for every soul who follows Him. Fearing God is the devoted respect for His love, His mercy and His grace. Jesus compares this love to the knowledge His Father has of man. The tiny sparrow is of great importance to the Creator and every sparrow in the world is known by the Father – none are left out. God knows how many hairs fill the head of man. Jesus makes the point the Father is aware of the troubles we face and He is concerned. He loves us that much. What we feel and what we experience is on the mind of the Lord God Creator. Every devoted heart of God’s children is special, important, and vital to Him. Think about that for a moment. Fearing God helps us to live a life without fear.
Fear knocked on the door. Faith answered. No one was there. (On the front of the mantel in the ancient Hind’s Head Hotel at Bray, England)