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Luke 12:4-7

Luke 12:4-7
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Luke 12:4-7 “I tell you, my friends, do not fear those who kill the body, and after that have nothing more that they can do. but I will warn you whom to fear: fear him who, after he has killed, has authority to cast into hell. Yes, I tell you, fear him.”

Imagine that you are standing in the eye of a massive tornado…where you are it is still and peaceful and you can even see the blue sky shining down on you….but out at the edges of the eye the storm wall tears up the ground with deadly ferocity. Now, you would not leave that place in the eye no matter what people said or did to you…they might scoff at you or exclude you our beat you, but—because you know that to wander to the edge of the eye means destruction—you will stay in the center.


Similarly, Jesus says that a healthy fear of God’s judgment (like fear of the storm wall of the tornado) is part of what actually keeps the disciple in the center of God’s “eye,” that is (as will be made clear in the rest of the NT) clinging to the crucified and risen Jesus. Our fear of the reality of God’s judgment nullifies whatever fear we might have of those who are opposed to Christ….those who jeer or persecute or even kill us for the sake of His name….we do not abandon Christ for bodily comfort—we do not move from the “eye” of God in Christ—because we know that to step outside of Christ is to step into the storm wall of judgment. Fear of the Lord nullifies fear of human beings.


But I fear alone is not what keeps us in the eye. Back to our analogy, imagine that the most exquisite feast imaginable is laid out for all people in the center of the eye of the storm….At first you ran to the eye so as not to be destroyed by the storm wall, but now that you are there, you remain not out of fear of the storm, but out of love for the feast.


Again, the same is true in Christ. Yes, apart from Him we are under the judgment of God…and fear of judgment may be what initially drove us to Him, but it is not fear of judgment that KEEPS us in Him…rather, in Christ we have tasted and seen the banquet of God’s own life and we remain in Him because He Himself is all our good (Ps. 16:11, 73:25-26).