Thursday, April 01, 2010

Be not afraid – He has Risen

I woke up this morning to hear on the radio the complete hopelessness of the Veterans’ Administration hospitals. My thought had been when I get really old, then I would qualify for the VA Hospital. It is my back-up plan. (Be aware, in spite of what I hear on the radio, I hear the care is excellent in VA hospitals.)

In a meeting with a long-time tenant this week, he said unless things turn around in the next two months, he may shut down the business. He is fearful. Fear is all around. As Christians there is only one thing we should fear... "So do not be afraid of them. There is nothing concealed that will not be disclosed, or hidden that will not be made known. What I tell you in the dark, speak in the daylight; what is whispered in your ear, proclaim from the roofs. Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather, be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell.” (Matthew 10:26-28).  Fear God; beyond that don’t be afraid.

In this fear-laden time, it is fitting that this resurrection week remembrance should remind us that love drives out fear. “There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.” 1 John 4:18.

In 1 John 4:19 it says, "We love because He first loved us."  Who is He? Jesus. How did He first love us? He went to the cross willingly to bear our sin, die for us, in our place. He did all this when? Romans 5:6-8 “You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous man, though for a good man someone might possibly dare to die. But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”

Why then should we be afraid? We are the undeserving benefactors of the greatest gift of all time (peace with God), the greatest sacrifice (Jesus death on the cross). This is all a demonstration of God’s love to us—all initiated by God. All this was worked out in the life, death, suffering, and resurrection of His one and only son Jesus. If this is true, why are we afraid?

In Romans 8:14-15 it says this about believers… “because those who are led by the Spirit of God1 are sons of God. For you did not receive a spirit that makes you a slave again to fear, but you received the Spirit of sonship. And by him we cry, 'Abba," Father'." (Abba means daddy).

Should we be afraid of the future? No, God is still on the throne with His Son by His side awaiting the command of the Father, to go get His kids (us). Yes, if we believe, why are we afraid?

Fear God alone; beyond that, don’t be afraid. The world is cowering, looking for hope and answers. Share Christ with them.

Jesus Christ alone is our hope and salvation. Let’s live like His children should live—sacrificially and courageously. God help us in these days. Don’t be afraid.

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