“I tell you, my friends, do not be afraid of those who kill the body and after that can do no more. But I will show you whom you should fear: Fear him who, after your body has been killed, has authority to throw you into hell. Yes, I tell you, fear him. 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.
“I tell you, whoever publicly acknowledges me before others, the Son of Man will also acknowledge before the angels of God. But whoever disowns me before others will be disowned before the angels of God. And everyone who speaks a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven, but anyone who blasphemes against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven.
“When you are brought before synagogues, rulers and authorities, do not worry about how you will defend yourselves or what you will say, for the Holy Spirit will teach you at that time what you should say.”
- Luke 12:4-12
“God knows the minutest details of our lives and being. It is always a great comfort to remember that our heavenly Father knows us.
“A dying man who had been for many years a believer had a minister at his bedside who asked him, ‘Don’t you know Jesus?’
”’Yes, Sir,’ he replied, ‘I do, but the ground of my comfort is that he knows me.’”
- Charles H. Spurgeon, from his sermon notes
I could have just quoted Luke 12:7 where God numbers the hairs on our heads and we are worth more than many sparrows, but there are nuggets throughout this bit of Scripture.
Many people think that they are God’s gift to any assembly of people where they enter. They should be in fear of the One who will judge them in the end.
We should never deny God as our God. Sometimes this can be hard. Sometimes others may wish to imprison us or kill us. It was hard for the first century Christians to hide, so that they would not be killed.
And when it comes to being in an uncomfortable position without having a clue what to say, my wife and I have both had the experience of speaking, having others say what a wonderful manner we had in what we said to calm people down, and then we’ve gone away wondering what came out of our mouths. It was the Holy Spirit speaking through us. You must ask and believe, but the Holy Spirit can take over in critical moments and you will be left wondering what really happened.
But, let’s get to that promise that we are worth more than many sparrows and God knows us personally, down to the root of each hair. Now for you who have lost the hair on your head, God has not cast you aside – less hair, less notice. No, I am sure that the follicle, the cavity that produced the hair, is where the counting starts, whether the follicle can produce a hair or not.
No, let’s look at the concept brought forth from the old man in the Spurgeon quote. How many of us can say that we know God? We don’t even need the Bible for that. We can see God in nature. We can see God as our circumstances change. We can see evidence of God everywhere that we look. In fact, our ability to look was designed by God, and since God is light, without God, our eyes would only see darkness.
But in flipping the paradigm and speaking of God knowing us personally, that rocks the foundation of the world. Here is the almighty God spending time, getting to know what the world has determined is insignificant.
You know the one who is insignificant. He is the homeless guy with one leg and on crutches who panhandles near the highway, at the exit that leads to the big shopping center. Of the thousands of cars who pass by, how many people notice? Of those who notice, how many offer a small amount of their change? Of those who give him money, how many speak to him? How many say, “God loves you, and I do too?” If you haven’t noticed, we are a long way from counting the hairs on the poor man’s head, but God is already to that point.
My wife is great about remembering birthdays, what kind of wine her friends like, and what their favorite color is. The God who made everything cares about us and knows all that and more about us. Of those in your work group, or your four or five closest friends, do you know their birthdays, spouse’s names, or their favorite color? God knows.
When Jesus said that He calls us brothers and sisters, He meant that He wished to have that intimate of a relationship with each of us. And no, I have no idea how many hairs my sister has on her head.
About a week ago, the day before Valentine’s Day, Kathy of A Time to Share, posted a beautiful poem that she wrote, and one of the lines was about how God loves us so much that He cuddles with us. Sure, even guys can give ‘bro-hugs,’ but God cuddles. That’s a lot more intimate than a bro-hug.
Yes, I think the old man in the Spurgeon quote understands. It is important for us to know God, but the comfort comes from God knowing us.
Soli Deo Gloria. Only to God be the Glory.