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68: Truth Conquers All Fear

May 14, 2009

Major Text: Luke 12:1-12

Key Verse: Luke 12:8

Outline:

  1. Live the Truth Luke 12:1-3
  2. Fear the Truth Luke 12:4-7
  3. Acknowledge the Truth Luke 12:8-10
  4. Tell the Truth Luke 12:11-12

Context/Discussion/Comments:

Jesus is discussing what had happened the night before when He had dinner with a Pharisee and other teachers of the law with His disciples. A crowd is gathering, thousands. This is probably the largest crowd Jesus ever spoke to. It must have taken place in some sort of natural amphitheater in the hills of Judea.

There are many ways to look at this scripture. One emphasis could be on fear. His disciples are to be on guard of the Pharisee’s teachings and their ways [fear]. At the same time they are not to fear anyone who could take their life. They can kill the body but not the soul. They are to fear God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit but not rulers. There is also much innuendo about what the Pharisees will do to Jesus in verse 4. The fact that all will come before God and all our deeds will be made known is revealed in verses 2 and 3. You can practice hypocrisy but you can not cover it up forever. As His disciples we have no need to fear God because we are valuable to Him [verses 6 and 7]. The importance of acknowledging Jesus as the Christ is mentioned in verse 8. Then He repeats the serious nature of the “unpardonable sin” which we discussed in Lesson 34. He tells His disciples not to worry when they are arrested by rulers, again a prelude of what will happen to Him [vs. 11-12].

Jesus is giving His disciples and the crowd which overhears Him a different perspective on life, an eternal perspective. He is not teaching them how to minister but how to deal with a society that refuses to accept Him. The Pharisees would be “middle class”, the murderers would be “outcasts”, and the rulers would be “upper class”.

Let’s look at some definitions too:

  • Blasphemy in the Old Testament means that the hallowed name of Yahweh is profaned by a faithless, idolatrous, and disobedient people.
  • Blasphemy in the New Testament means attributing the work of God to Satan and ignoring the persistent call to Salvation in Christ by the Holy Spirit.
  • Fear does not only mean alarmed but reverence. We are to revere God’s authority, obey His commands, and hate evil. We are to have a awesome respect for His power His authority and His righteousness.

You can easily see that the Pharisees met and practiced much of what Jesus was warning the disciples about. In other words, make very sure you do not follow in their footsteps. The Pharisees couldn’t see the forest for the trees. They concentrated on their “little 613” and not on the “big 10”. Everything they did pointed to self instead of God.

Interestingly, this portion of Scripture gives one of the clearest teachings on the Trinity.

In broad terms, Jesus is defining the Pharisees and defining His disciples. We are not to be like the Pharisees but we are to be truthful and transparent; no hidden agendas. We are to love God and acknowledge Jesus as His Son. We are to serve others and not themselves. We are not to discount the miracles that God performs. If you asked a person on the street today what a Christians believes and practices, what would he say?

  • Creationism or evolution?
  • Forgiveness or judgment?
  • Pro-life or pro-abortion?
  • Love or legalism?
  • Peace or war? [doves or hawks?]
  • Tolerance or intolerance?
  • GOP or DFL?

With the exception of the last, which has nothing to do with Biblical principles or Jesus’ teachings, I would hope people would think of us as those who are part of the first column. But more important we should be known for our Fruit of the Spirit in Galatians 5. Words like love, mercy, compassion, truth, faith, holiness, righteousness, and patience should roll off their tongues. We are to be known as “truthful”

Lessons/Applications:

The lesson and application for this scripture is the same as our outline. We are to:

  1. Live the Truth,
  2. Fear the Truth,
  3. Acknowledge the Truth, and
  4. Tell the Truth.

Truthfulness leads to respect.
Truthfulness leads to justice.
Truthfulness leads to grace.
Truthfulness leads to peace.

TRUTHFULNESS bears witness to the TRUTH

“Know the truth and the truth shall set you free”

John 8:32

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