Summary: How do we deal with fear? Should we fear? If so, then what kind of fear should we have? Our Text answers theses questions.
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 warn you whom to fear: fear the One who, after He has killed, has the authority to cast into hell; yes, I tell you, fear Him! Are not five sparrows sold for two cents? Yet not one of them is forgotten before God. Indeed, the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Do not fear; you are more valuable than many sparrows. [NASB]
Have you ever been alone in the house at night? Perhaps you have been watching a scary movie and then suddenly, out of the blue, you hear a strange noise. When this happens, most people are immediately gripped by fear. There is an “unknown” something lurking and most are not quite sure how to react.
Or, have you ever walked into a darkened place and had something brush against your face causing you to recoil not knowing what you have run into? Then when the light is turned on you find nothing more than a string or cobwebs, etc. has turned out to be the culprit.
Perhaps you are one of those who say, “I ain’t scared of nuttin’!” – However, this type is a rare breed and I really do not think that there is any among us who are not fearful of something.
Funk & Wagnalls Standard Desk Dict., 1979 – “ An agitated feeling aroused by an awareness of actual or threatening danger, trouble, etc.; dread, terror.  An uneasy feeling that something may happen contrary to one’s desires.  A feeling of deep reverential awe and dread.”
Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dict., 2000 – “ An unpleasant often strong emotion caused by anticipation or awareness of danger. …  Profound reverence and awe esp. toward God.”
Greek verb “phobeo”, (# 5399 – Strong) most often translated fear in the NT means - “in earlier Greek, ‘to put to flight’ … is always used in the passive voice, with the meanings either (a) ‘to fear, be afraid,’ … or (b) ‘to show reverential fear’ … (a) and (b) are combined in Luke 12:4,5, where Christ warns His followers not to be afraid of men, but to ‘fear’ God.” [Vine’s Expository Dict. of New Testament Words, 1996]
What brings fear into your life?
> Darkness – to some the “boogey man” is very real and frightening
> Health – many in our society are afraid of getting some dreadful disease
> Old Age – most “baby-boomers” are at war at getting old
> Financial – many are afraid of being poor
> Physical – many dread being harmed and maimed for life – “bullies” still exist
> Death – very few look forward to experiencing physical death
** How do we deal with fear? Should we fear? If so, then what kind of fear should we have? Our text answers these questions.
** In our text - Jesus tells us that worldly fear is something we need not be concerned about – instead – what we should fear is God! For He is our Sovereign Lord.
Vs. 4 – 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.
Two Things Here -
* First – Jesus is addressing those he considers as His friends.
Friends are dearly loved. Taken into the greatest intimacy. Share emotions and times with each other. The ones you put your complete confidence into.
2 Samuel 18:1-5 & 20:16-17 - Jonathan and David
Proverbs 17:17a - A friend loves at all times
Proverbs 18:24b - There is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.
John 15:12-15 - Jesus describes His friends
Who do you consider to be your friends?
^ Worldly – James 4:4 “… Do you not know that friendship with the world is hostility toward God? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God.
^ Heavenly – 1 John 4:7 “Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God.” Let your heart show where your treasures are at – Matthew 6:19-21.
* Second – Not to be afraid of those who will harm or destroy the body.
The people during Jesus’ time on this earth were afraid of what the Scribes and Pharisees were capable of doing to them.
Jesus said not to be in fear of these people – for once they destroyed the body, they could do nothing else to harm the person!