Christmas Fades Fears
December 11, 2020

Today’s 333 Devotional: Christmas Fades Fears

Then the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid.” (Luke 2:10)

There are many reasons why the angel told the shepherds not to be afraid. It was a natural response. Angels are superior beings while shepherds were ordinary people considered by many as third class citizens.

Shepherds in Jewish society were considered religious outcasts. According to Jewish religious law they were unclean. Their line of work prevented them from participating in the feasts and holy days making up the Jewish religious calendar.

But somebody had to watch the sheep. When everyone else was making the trip to Jerusalem to make sacrifices, they were out in the fields watching over the sheep.

From a religious point of view they were looked down upon. Whatever might have been in their hearts, they weren’t able to participate fully in the religious life of the community.

The shepherds were borderline social outcasts as well. Since they were constantly on the move to find new pasture for their flocks, they were looked upon with suspicion. They were often accused of being thieves. If something came up missing: it must have been the shepherds. They were not permitted to give testimony in legal proceedings either, because their word was considered untrustworthy.

The shepherds also had many fears, from wild animals to lawless bandits. They also feared the Roman soldiers who harassed them. And like every human being, shepherds had a fear of death.

Can you see how excited they would have been?

Unto them, a Savior, the Great Shepherd had been born, and He specializes in vanquishing fear from the human heart. He conquered fear by conquering death when after the crucifixion he rose from the dead.

We may have hears that are filled with fear this Christmas. Fear about this COVID-19, our health, family, job, economy, or the present condition of the world. But we do not need fear; we have “good tiding of great joy,” because the Savior, the Great Shepherd was born.

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