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Living a Life Free of Fear

Luke 12:1-7

  1. Luke 11:53-12:4—setting the stage
    1. The Pharisee’s harassment– notice Luke’s description of the event
      1. Press him hard 
      2. To provoke him
      3. Lying in wait to catch him
    2. Meanwhile or in the meantime
      1. The crowds began to gather- A large (12:1) and growing group of followers (11:29)
    3. Pharisee Warning– It appears from what follows that the presence of the Pharisees was troubling to the apostles. So Jesus issues a warning about the Pharisee’s
      1. Hypocrisy of the Pharisee’s
        1. These mistaken men dreamed that they possessed a holiness which was never theirs; unconscious hypocrites they doubtless were.” Pulpit Commentary, Spence, H.D.M.
        2. Are we ever guilty of unconscious hypocrisy?
    4. Wiersbe wrote, “He saw that the Twelve were worried about the Pharisees, so he warned them to fear God alone and not fear man…when we start fearing people, then we are in danger of compromising in order to please them and protect ourselves, and this leads to hypocrisy.”
    5. Are there some people, or groups of people that make you uneasy?
      1. Homosexual support groups
      2. Religious groups
      3. Other?
      4. Do we ever find ourselves fearing them? Becoming intimidated and suddenly what was so black and white, so wrong and right becomes less clear.
  2. Luke 12:5-7- two reasons Christian’s should live fearlessly 
    1. Do not fear
      1. People who can cause death
        1. The prophets in the OT were killed by man
        2. In this case the warning seems to be taken to refer to the Pharisee’s threat(s)
          1. This would be a challenge early on to the Apostles
      2. Satan and his angels
        1. We are told to resist hem (Js 4:7)
      3. Why not fear them? They cannot touch eternity
        1. They cannot cast into hell- although some people act as if they can.
        2. They cannot impact your relationship with Jesus Christ
        3. Rom 8:35-39
          Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword? 36 As it is written,

“For your sake we are being killed all the day long;
we are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered.”

37 No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. 38 For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, 39 nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.

        1. Do we ever fear those who cannot impact eternity?
        2. Do we fear situations that will not impact eternity?
    1. Fear Him
      1. Who has the power to kill
      2. Who has the power over eternity
        1. To cast into the Valley of Hinnom- Hell
        2. Jesus speaks of hell as a place that God has authority to send mankind
        3. In verse 5, three times Jesus warns them/us to fear God
        4. Our reverential fear of God should remove our fear of those that cannot touch eternity
      3. Here lies one who feared God so much that he never feared the face of man.” Said of John Knox, reformer in Europe/Scotland (1514-1572) as they lowered his body into the grave. William Barclay
    2. Do not fear 
      1. Because the one who has power over eternity knows. 
        1. Mt 10:29 tells us 2 sparrows are sold for 1 penny
        2. Luke 12:6 tells us 5 sparrows are sold for 2 pennies. It is a by four get one free deal. They are of so little value that the 5th sparrow is just thrown in. God cares for the sparrow that is just thrown inthe free one. The one of so little value that it is given for free. It is of almost no value in the eyes of man, but God even cares for it.
      2. Because the one who has the power over eternity cares for you.
      3. Consider this:
        1. He cares for the most insignificant of creatures (the 5th sparrow)- and we are of much more value (vs 6-7)
        2. He knows even the most insignificant details in your  life- the hairs on your head (vs 7)
    3. “not one of them is forgotten before God.” (vs 6)
      1. Job 19:14– Friends forget
        My relatives have failed me, my close friends have forgotten me.
      2. Ps 42:9a– We may believe we are forgotten
        I say to God, my rock: “Why have you forgotten me?
        Why do I go mourning

        1. When our prayers seem to go unheard
        2. When we are absent from worship
        3. When hardships come
  1. What lessons can we learn from this passage
    1. We do not need to fear or worry. Why?
      1. Mankind is not in control of your eternity
        1. They can cast no one to hell
      2. The one with the power cares for you
        1. You are never insignificant. With God you are never just one in the crowd.
      3. The one with the power will not forget you
        1. But not forgotten before God
          1. The poor were forgettable. They were easily overlooked. Easily passed by.
            1. But not by God- Ps 9:18
              For the needy shall not always be forgotten, and the hope of the poor shall not perish forever.
          2. The Israelites were foolish. Their sin abounded. They turned to idolatry.
            1. But God did not forget them- Is 44:21
              Remember these things, O Jacob, and Israel, for you are my servant; I formed you; you are my servant; O Israel, you will not be forgotten by me.
          3. He does not forget about the sparrow, “not one of them is forgotten before God.”
            1. Not one! Not the one thrown in for free. He knows the hairs on your head!
            2. If God will not forget about even one sparrow, and we are of more value than many sparrows, he will not forget about you.
          4. If God cares about something as insignificant as the numbers of hairs on your head- something so trivial, certainly he will care about you
          5. Even the small details in your life are never insignificant as he knows and cares about even those trivial worries in your life.
      4. God’s care is the most detailed of all care.” William Barclay
      5. “The observation about sparrows and the hairs of your head show God’s providential care over the smallest details of life.” Grudem and Schreiner