Summary: A Reason to trust in God.

Let’s Give Them Something To Talk About

Part 1

Zephaniah 3:14-17

1. God Has Taken Away Our Punishment (14, 15)

Romans 5:8 But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us

2. We Have Nothing To Fear (vs. 16)

The Sunday supplement magazine, USA Weekend, ran a cover story in its August 22–24, 1997 issue, entitled “Fear: What Americans Are Afraid of Today.” In a scientific poll, the magazine uncovered the things Americans fear most:

• 54% are “afraid” or “very afraid” of being in a car crash.

• 53% are “afraid” or “very afraid” of having cancer.

• 50% are “afraid” or “very afraid” of inadequate Social Security.

• 49% are “afraid” or “very afraid” of not having enough money for retirement.

• 36% are “afraid” or “very afraid” of food poisoning from meat.

• 35% are “afraid” or “very afraid” of getting Alzheimer’s.

• 34% are “afraid” or “very afraid” of pesticides on food.

• 33% are “afraid” or “very afraid” of being a victim of individual violence.

• 32% are “afraid” or “very afraid” of being unable to pay current debts.

• 30% are “afraid” or “very afraid” of exposure to foreign viruses.

• 28% are “afraid” or “very afraid” of getting AIDS.

• 25% are “afraid” or “very afraid” of natural disasters.

Other findings:

• Is the world a safer place than when you were growing up? No, say 9 in 10 Americans.

• 4 in 10 people feel unsafe taking a walk alone at night within a half-mile of home.

• 1 in 4 women thinks she has been followed by a stranger in the past year.

• 1 in 5 fears being caught in a bombing in a public place.*

Isaiah 41:10 Fear not, for I am with you; Be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, Yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand

Isaiah 12:2 (NLT) See, God has come to save me. I will trust in him and not be afraid. The LORD GOD is my strength and my song; he has become my salvation”

When businessman Allen Emery was in the wool business, he once spent an evening with a shepherd on the Texas prairie. During the night, the long wail of coyotes pierced the air. The shepherd’s dogs growled and peered into the darkness. The sheep, which had been sleeping, lumbered to their feet, alarmed, bleating pitifully. The shepherd tossed more logs onto the fire, and the flames shot up. In the glow, Allen looked out and saw thousands of little lights. He realized those were reflections of the fire in the eyes of the sheep.

“In the midst of danger,” he observed, “the sheep were not looking out into the darkness but were keeping their eyes set in the direction of their safety, looking toward the shepherd. I couldn’t help but think of Hebrews 12: ‘looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith.…’

3. Let’s Be Busy For God (vs. 16)

Jude 21(NLT) Live in such a way that God’s love can bless you as you wait for the eternal life that our Lord Jesus Christ in his mercy is going to give you.

It is observable that God has often called men to places of dignity and honor when they have busy and honest employment of their vocation. Saul was seeking his father’s donkeys and David his father’s sheep when called to the Kingdom. The shepherds were feeding their flocks when they had their glorious revelation. God called the four apostles from their fishing and Matthew from collecting taxes, Amos from the horsemen of Tecoah, Moses from keeping Jethro’s sheep, Gideon from the threshing floor, Elisha from the plows. God never called a lazy man. God never encourages idleness and will not despise persons in the lowest employment.—D. L. Moody

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