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Fear Not – It’s Good News

• Greg Boyd

Like the shepherds whom the angel of the Lord spoke to, God wants us to know that we do not need to be afraid of Him. His character in the person of Jesus Christ displays His love for us. The message of His love is good news! Out of this abundant relationship with Jesus, comes a desire to share this good news with others.

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Like the shepherds whom the angel of the Lord spoke to, God wants us to know that we do not need to be afraid of Him. His character in the person of Jesus Christ displays His love for us. The message of His love is good news! Out of this abundant relationship with Jesus, comes a desire to share this good news with others.

Do not be afraid, this is good news! The shepherd’s reaction to the appearance of the angel of the Lord brought about a sense of terror. God’s presence does bring about a sense of awe (phobos in Greek) and reverence, but should never bring about a sense of terror (mega-phobeomai in Greek). The shepherds were terrified, but God desired to draw them near, not away from His presence. The angel calms the shepherds by sharing that they did not have to be afraid, because the news being declared was good news of great joy. The good news to the shepherds and us today is that man does not need to live in fear of God. God has sent his Son, Jesus Christ to reconcile and redeem us. Our identity is in Him. The good news is for YOU! The angel emphasized to the shepherds that this was good news for them. Shepherds were not deemed very worthy within their society. It would have been very easy for them to feel that the good news shared was not directly for them, maybe for someone more important. However, the angel personalized the message by stating that the good news was indeed for them as well as for all people.

Like the shepherds, this good news is for you! You may have never benefited from any sort of good news before in this life, but God is declaring his good news to you. Jesus died to give you life and to live with a purpose in Him. There are several passages in scripture that mention who we are in Christ. Here are a few:

YOU ravish the heart of God

(Song of Songs, 4:1, 6:4)

YOU are inseparable from God’s love and will never be abandoned

(Romans 8:35-39; Matthew 28:20)

YOU are filled with the “fullness of God” and blessed with every spiritual blessing in Christ Jesus

(Ephesians 3:19)

YOU have been bought with an infinite price and are forgiven

(I Corinthians 6:20; Ephesians 1:7; Colossians 1:14)

Jesus knows everything about you, and he loves you still! The good news is for you regardless of who you are or what you have done. Share this good news to others!

Following the shepherd’s visit to see the baby Jesus, they were filled with excitement and desired to share what they had seen with others. Those who heard what they had to share were amazed. The shepherds were no longer filled with terror, but with awe for God. They began to glorify and praise God for the things they had seen and heard. When Jesus becomes a reality in our lives, something extraordinary happens. We are no longer the same. There comes a great joy and excitement about this new life! As well, there comes a desire to share this good news of Jesus with others. How does this take place? As a believer in Jesus Christ, live in love as God has loved you. Our purpose as believers in Jesus Christ is to share what He has done for us. Wherever you are, whatever you do, live in this reality and share what He has done for you.

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Topics: Fear, Identity in Christ, Salvation


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Focus Scripture:

  • Luke 2: 8-20

    And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”

    Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,

    “Glory to God in the highest heaven,
    and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.”

    When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let's go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”

    So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them. But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart. The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been told.

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