God watches over the Sparrows…

God’s eyes are on the sparrow and I know He watches over me…

“Worry makes you forget who’s in charge. And when the focus is on yourself.. you worry…. With time your agenda becomes more important than God’s. You’re more concerned with pleasing self than pleasing him. And you may even find yourself doubting God’s judgment.”
— Max Lucado

Fear controls too much of life. Afraid that we will not please others, we become hypocrites.

Afraid of those in power, we forfeit our integrity.

Afraid of ridicule, we deny Jesus.

Afraid of poverty and want, we deify our wealth.

Afraid of death and suffering, we lose trust in God.

Afraid we have missed our opportunity, we are not ready when God calls.

Afraid we will not get all that is coming to us, we take things into our hands rather than waiting to accept the reward God has prepared for us.

Afraid of what our family will think, we let family loyalty override loyalty to God.

Jesus seeks to lead us to trust God and overcome all fear.

Luke 12:1-9
New King James Version

Beware of Hypocrisy
12 In the meantime, when an innumerable multitude of people had gathered together, so that they trampled one another, He began to say to His disciples first of all,

“Beware of the leaven of the Pharisees, which is hypocrisy.

2 For there is nothing covered that will not be revealed, nor hidden that will not be known.

3 Therefore whatever you have spoken in the dark will be heard in the light, and what you have spoken in the ear in inner rooms will be proclaimed on the housetops.

Jesus Teaches the Fear of God
4 “And I say to you, My friends, do not be afraid of those who kill the body, and after that have no more that they can do.

5 But I will show you whom you should fear: Fear Him who, after He has killed, has power to cast into hell; yes, I say to you, fear Him!

6 “Are not five sparrows sold for two copper coins? And not one of them is forgotten before God.

7 But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Do not fear therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows.

Confess Christ Before Men
8 “Also I say to you, whoever confesses Me before men, him the Son of Man also will confess before the angels of God.

9 But he who denies Me before men will be denied before the angels of God.”

(Verse 1) An innumerable multitude … had gathered together while Jesus was condemning the Pharisees and lawyers.

A dispute or a debate will generally attract a throng, but this crowd was also drawn, no doubt, by Jesus’ fearless denunciation of these hypocritical religious leaders.

Although an uncompromising attitude toward sin is not always popular, yet it does commend itself to the heart of man as being righteous.

Truth is always self-verifying.

Turning to His disciples, Jesus warned, “Beware of the leaven of the Pharisees.”

He explained that leaven is a symbol or picture of hypocrisy.

A hypocrite is one who wears a mask, one whose outward appearance is utterly different from what he is inwardly.

The Pharisees posed as paragons of virtue but actually they were masters of masquerade.

Their day of exposure would come. All that they had covered up would be revealed, and all that they had done in the dark would be dragged out into the light.

Just as inevitable as the unmasking of hypocrisy is the triumph of truth.

Up to then, the message proclaimed by the disciples had been spoken in relative obscurity and to limited audiences.

But following the rejection of the Messiah by Israel, and the coming of the Holy Spirit, the disciples would go forth fearlessly in the name of the Lord Jesus and proclaim the good news far and wide.

Then it would be proclaimed on the housetops, comparatively speaking.

With the encouraging and warm-hearted words “My friends,” Jesus warns His disciples not to be ashamed of this priceless friendship under any trials.

The worldwide proclamation of the Christian message would bring persecution and death to the loyal disciples.

But there was a limit to what men like the Pharisees could do to them.

Physical death was that limit.

This they should not fear. God would visit their persecutors with a far worse punishment, namely, eternal death in hell.

And so the disciples were to fear God rather than man.

In verses 6-7, in order to emphasize God’s protective interest in the disciples, the Lord Jesus mentioned the Father’s care for sparrows.

In Matthew 10:29 we read that two sparrows are sold for a copper coin.

Here we learn that five sparrows are sold for two copper coins.

In other words, an extra sparrow is thrown in free when four are purchased.

And yet not even this odd sparrow with no commercial value is forgotten in the sight of God.

If God cares for that odd sparrow, how much more does He watch over those who go forth with the gospel of His Son! He numbers the very hairs of their head.

What worries consume your thoughts? Turn them over to God . . . then breathe a sigh of relief and live for Him.

Let God carry your burdens.
____

Wed, June 15
Positive Words #443
by Peter Wade

THE SPARROWS AND GOD

“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 12:6-7

(see also Matthew 10:29-31).

“Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?” (Matthew 6:26)

What a simple yet powerful illustration given by Jesus of God’s comfort and care for those who believe in Him.

These small birds are plentiful in Israel, and even in the time of the gospels were of very little value. Yet God knows they exist and He keeps track of them.

Sometimes a small bird will fly at great speed and hit our front window with a thud!

The window has a slight reflective image and I think the birds see our front garden reflected in them.

Recently, one died as a result of this accident. And God knows about it!

You are worth much more than “many sparrows” to your loving heavenly Father, and He wants only the best for you.

“Encourage yourself” (Judges 20:22; I Samuel 30:6) in the Lord, and “blossom where you are planted.”

You are valuable in God’s sight, and that really is all that really matters.

“Precious [that is, costly] in the sight of the Lord is the death of his saints” (Psalm 116:15).

This is so beautifully expressed in the song lyrics by Civilla Martin, written in 1905 and made famous to a new generation by Ethel Waters at the Billy Graham crusades.

Charles Gabriel wrote the music (a challenging piece to play on a keyboard in the original key of D flat, now usually in the key of C!).

Why should I feel discouraged, why should the shadows come,

Why should my heart be lonely, and long for heaven and home,

When Jesus is my portion? My constant friend is He:

His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me;

His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me.

Chorus: I sing because I’m happy,
I sing because I’m free,
For His eye is on the sparrow,
And I know He watches me.

“Let not your heart be troubled,” His tender word I hear,

And resting on His goodness, I lose my doubts and fears;

Though by the path He leadeth, but one step I may see;

His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me;

His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me.

He sure does, and I am so glad, so take comfort from His care over you.
— Peter Wade
____

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Skip 🕊️

Author: SPARKS FROM THE ANVIL OF LIFE

This is an open forum where we look into and investigate the Rhema Mysteries of God's Word; and also other issues of importance for our day and time.

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