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Advent Devotional: Fourth Sunday of Advent

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Risen with Healing in His Wings

His Eye Is On The Sparrow

December 20, 2020

“I tell you, my friends, do not fear those who kill the body, and after that have nothing more that they can do…. Are not five sparrows sold for two pennies? And not one of them is forgotten before God. Why, even the hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not; you are of more value than many sparrows.” —Luke 12:4, 6-7

We cannot eliminate fear altogether—especially the fear of death. It is part of our frailty as fallen creatures. Our souls were made for eternity. How can we help but fear our own mortality?

There is more than one kind of fear, however—a wrong fear and a right fear. Jesus tells us not to fear people who can harm only our bodies. This is a hard teaching because we love our bodies and instinctively protect them any way we can. We shudder at the prospect of death.

Nevertheless, Jesus tells us not to be afraid of people who can only kill our bodies. He draws a distinction between this life and the life to come. For the believer, death is only temporary. Therefore, our real concern ought to be with what will happen to us in eternity. If we belong to God through faith in Jesus Christ, our death will be our entrance into glory.

By clearly distinguishing between two different kinds of fear, Jesus gave his disciples another basis for Christian courage. The same God who holds the power of judgment is also the God who knows me and loves me.

Jesus proves this point by making a famous comparison between a sparrow and one of his disciples. If God takes such good care of sparrows, what will he do for us?

Trusting in God’s merciful compassion comforts our fears. God is with us in times of trouble. He provides for our daily needs, guides our future, rescues our broken relationships, and heals the deep wounds of our hearts. If his eye is on the sparrow, we can be certain of his deep and abiding love for us.

Reflective Question

Consider the fears you have harbored during this difficult year. How much energy did you expend worrying about problems that never materialized?

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