[God has shown] mercy to our ancestors and to remember his holy covenant, the oath he swore to our father Abraham: to rescue us from the hand of our enemies, and to enable us to serve him without fear in holiness and righteousness before him all our days.
Serve Him Without Fear
Fear is an all-encompassing emotion. When a person is afraid, they can become virtually paralyzed. The fight-or-flight system kicks in, and the whole body goes into survival mode. Can you think of a time when you were so afraid that you couldn’t carry out your normal responsibilities?
The Bible describes much of Israel’s history as one of fear. They were afraid of their enemies. And because they kept turning to idols to deliver them, they were also afraid of God and his just punishment.
But God had promised from the very beginning, from the time of Abraham, to rescue the people from all their enemies so that they would no longer be afraid. That’s why when John the Baptist was born (the forerunner to Jesus), his Father, Zechariah, sang the words above.
Zechariah knew that the coming Messiah was going to fulfill the promises that God made to Abraham, namely, to rescue God’s people from their enemies. Then, God’s people could finally serve God without fear.
Through his life, death, and resurrection, Jesus defeated our enemies of sin, death, and the devil. We no longer need to live in fear. We don’t need to fear the devil and his lies. We don’t need to fear our enemies who want to harm us. We don’t even need to fear the judgment of God. Because of Jesus, we are free to serve God without fear.
Lord Jesus, you came into this world on the very first Christmas to set me free. Set me free from all those things that cause me to be afraid, so that I can serve you in love. Amen.
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