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  • Writer's pictureMatt Beaney

#1065. Don’t be afraid, even your hairs are numbered (28/5/24)

This week in our Luke series, we are focussing on Luke 12:4-12, where the theme is how we are to deal with the pressure to hide or compromise our faith. Today, we see that the love of God and His attention on us free us of fear.  

‘“Are not five sparrows sold for two pennies? Yet not one of them is forgotten by God.  Indeed, the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.”’ (Luke 12:6-7)

Lesson: We must overcome our fear of people with the love of God 


You can listen to this devotional at:




I don’t know if you’ve ever done any rock climbing. If you have, you may have had someone on the ground ‘belaying’ for you; this is holding a safety line that, if you should lose your footing, will keep you from falling. When you know that you are supported and protected, one is confident to climb and try harder things. 

In today’s text, we are being encouraged to allow the attention and love of God to drive out fear so that we can live for Jesus. Jesus teaches about the ‘omniscience’ of God - God knows all things fully. Jesus argues from the lesser to the greater; if ‘five sparrows’ are not forgotten by God, He is certainly aware of and has not forgotten us. Added to this everyday illustration, Jesus makes the point that if God has numbered the hairs on your head, how can we think that He may have forgotten us? 

The love of God is to drive out fear. Fear is the product of believing that we are endangered. In the context of this passage, the people were tempted to fear the religious leaders rather than God because they believed that the threat they posed was more real than the attention and love of God, and indeed, even the judgement of God if the should reject Him!

The story of Hager, rejected and in the desert, but found a reassured by God, is a great example of these things. 

‘She gave this name to the Lord who spoke to her: “You are the God who sees me,” for she said, “I have now seen the One who sees me.”  That is why the well was called Beer Lahai Roi (well of the Living One who sees me). (Genesis 16:13-14) 

Response

We must overcome our fear of people with the love of God. May we confess the name of God - El Rohi (The God who sees me). This is not simply a matter of studying these truths. Our faith in the love and care of God is grown through study and prayer, but also, through having to apply these truths in faith. Our faith is ‘refined like gold’ in the fires of life. When fearful, we are to choose to make good decisions that intimidate us because we are choosing to trust in the name of God and His promises. There is no painless growth! 

 

COMMUNITY GROUP NOTES AND STUDY


1. Notices

It might be good to begin with notices. Please share from this week’s Church News. 

  • Please ensure that everyone is aware of our week of prayer next week (3rd-9th June) and how to get the Zoom Link. 


2. Icebreaker

How has God been speaking to you from His Word this week and how has this helped you? 


3. Worship together

Let’s begin our time together by lifting our eyes and hearts to worship our great God. Perhaps you have readings and songs that you would like to use together. Let’s be open to the gifts that the Spirit wants to give in order to encourage one another.


4. Study and pray together

Our message from our series in Luke on Sunday was based upon Jesus’ teaching from Luke 12:4-12. Here, Jesus is teaching Christians on how to deal with fear, and the pressure to keep silent about our faith. There is a lot in this short text and you may not have enough time to cover it all. However, our devotionals this week go into more details so please use these so as to think more deeply about these challenging words. 


Please read Luke 12:4-12, and discuss: 

  • What would you say is the main message and application of Luke 12:4-12? 

  • Did God speak to you about anything specifically from Sunday’s message?

  • How do verses 4-7 teach us to overcome fear of people? 

  • Verses 8-10a, warns us against allowing fear to keep us from sharing our faith. Do you allow fear to stop you from sharing the gospel? 

  • Continuing from the last question, if we have failed to ‘publicly acknowledge’ Jesus, what is the promise for us who have, in being ashamed,  ‘sinned against The Son of Man’? 

  • In verses 8-10, Jesus compares sinning against ‘The Son of Man’ (Jesus) and The Holy Spirit. What is the sin against the Spirit and how can you help someone who is worried if they’ve committed it?

  • In verses 11-12, What is the promise and how does believing this help us to overcome fear of sharing the gospel?  

  • SIV - Do we have any stories of how we have ‘Served, Invested, and inVited’ recently?

  • SIV - Spend some time together talking and praying about who and how you are seeking to bring your community to Jesus. 

  • Let’s pray together that, this week, we will have opportunities to SIV; and pray for anything else that's come out of our time in God’s Word.

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