Answered by: BibleAsk Team


Why did Jesus say, “Fear not them that kill the body”?

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Jesus said, “Fear not them that kill the body..”. Were there any death threats to the 12 disciples?

Speaker 1

1 second. All right, so Barnabas is asking, according to Luke twelve to five, they’re not them that killed the body. Could it be it that just within the four Bible Gospels, matthew, Mark, Luke and John, there was someone or some people who are planning or intending to or threatening to kill the twelve disciples of Jesus Christ? Or doesn’t Luke twelve four to five confirm that there is someone or some people who are planning or intending or threatening to kill the twelve disciples of Jesus Christ? Was there any plan or threat to kill the twelve disciples of Jesus? Jesus Christ in the four Bible Gospel, Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. Please help. Thank you.

Speaker 2

Well, my friend Barnabas, I think that’s an excellent question and that’s a very cool name for your parents to name you, Barnabas. That’s an awesome follower of Jesus. So anyways, as far as was there any threat that we see in any of the four Gospels? There’s nothing that I see directly as far as during the time when Jesus was preaching, it kind of happened more at his I think Jesus was predicting basically future events, which obviously Jesus knows what’s going to happen next as far as who would be a threat to them for their physical life, but even more so to their spiritual salvation and their spiritual life. And so the verses you’re quoting in Luke chapter twelve, verse four, basically where Jesus says to his disciples, and I say unto you, my friends, be not afraid of them that kill the body, and after that they have no more they can do. So here it seems like Jesus is saying, if there’s somebody who’s threatening your physical well being, don’t be so much afraid of them. But in verses five and six, verse five, he says, but I forewarn you whom you shall fear, fear him that has, after he has killed, has power to cast into hell.

Speaker 2

Yeah, I say you fear him. And so basically capital H, because him being God, god is the only one that can kill you with the second death, which is utter destruction where you die and you never are resurrected. If somebody kills you on this earth, say you’re martyred for your faith, you will be resurrected at the second coming of Jesus and you’ll have eternal life. So Jesus is kind of saying, don’t worry so much about your life here on this earth as much as putting your stock in your eternal salvation. And so I think more why Jesus brought this up at this point in time. In Luke chapter twelve is actually found in the previous chapter, Luke eleven. And in this chapter is basically where the lawyers and the Pharisees were basically just harassing Jesus and trying to get him to say something wrong because they were really starting to feel threatened by Jesus. And I think Jesus saw what was in their hearts. And this is kind of the chapter where he has all these woes. Like it says in Luke eleven, verse 43 says, woe to you Pharisees, because you love the uppermost seats of the synagogues and you love greetings in the market.

Speaker 2

And he continues in verse 44, woe to you Pharisees, you hypocrites. Just like these greys which don’t appear, which appear not, and that men walk over them and are not aware of them. So basically and Jesus talks about how they’re just kind of like this clean subulture that looked nice on the outside, but inside is dead men’s bones. And so Jesus is talking about basically when you go into the next chapter, Luke twelve one actually the last verse in Luke eleven, jesus says that these Pharisees began in verse 53, says it began to urge him vehemently and to provoke him to speak many things. And it says in verse 54 laying wait for him. So basically they were just trying to catch him, seeking to catch something out of his mouth that they might accuse him. So Jesus saw that there was evil in the hearts of these Pharisees. And so I think that’s why it begins in the next chapter in Luke twelve. This is kind of the context of what was going on. And Jesus says in Luke chapter twelve, verse one, he says, in the meantime when they are gathered together in a numerable multitude of people and so much that they trod one upon another and he began on to his disciples first of all.

Speaker 2

So Jesus kind of sees this multitude coming and he pulls aside his disciples and says, beware of the leaven of the Pharisees, which is hypocrisy. And so that’s kind of the context that you see Jesus saying verses four and five that he’s saying, don’t be so much afraid of those who will kill the body. Because Jesus knew that the Pharisees were going to end up killing him. But he’s saying, be more careful of him who’s able to destroy your soul. Be more afraid of God, who’s the one who’s going to judge you and either give you eternal life or eternal destruction. And I think Jesus also did this as kind of a forewarning looking ahead. When you look in the book of Luke in verse chapter 22, when you see Jesus telling Peter, hey, I prayed for you, that when Satan tempts you that you won’t be overcome by sin and you won’t deny me, peter is like, no, I’ll never deny you. And Jesus was like, you’re going to deny me three times? And why would Peter deny Jesus? Because he was scared for his life. Anyway, so again that goes back to why I think Jesus was saying, you know, don’t be so afraid of what’s going to happen to you.

Speaker 2

Because Jesus knew basically eleven out of the twelve of his disciples, ten out of the twelve would be martyrs. The only one that wasn’t a martyr was John the Beloved. Judas committed suicide and was lost, but his other ten besides that were all martyred. And so I think this was just kind of a prophetic thing Jesus was telling his disciples was more future events as far as them knowing that most of them were pretty much going to have to die for their faith. And I think that Jesus had this special verse included in the Gospels because he wanted his future people to know, hey, if you’re going to follow Christ, this is sometimes a price you have to pay. But don’t be afraid to lose your life for Jesus because great is your reward in heaven. Jesus gives us promise, so many promises as far as us sacrificing all for Him and for his glory and for our salvation. And basically like it talks about in the attitudes in Matthew chapter five, I’m going to go there really quick because this is probably one of my favorite verses in the whole Bible. I remember this as a little kid and I remember thinking like, wow, this is really like the cost of Christianity.

Speaker 2

This is where Christianity really is, rubber meets the road. Do you really want to follow Jesus? Are you willing to give up everything, even your life to follow Jesus Christ? And it says in Matthew 511 and twelve, and I’ll just close with this thought, it says, blessed are you, and men shall revile you and persecute you, and say all matter of evil against you falsely for my sake. And Jesus says in verse twelve, rejoice and be exceedingly glad, for great is your reward in heaven, for so persecuted day the prophets which were before you. And if you look back on that chapter in Luke eleven, he talks about how the Pharisees, how their forefathers all killed the prophets. And so anybody sent that was sent to Israel to warn Israel, to warn God’s people, the Jews in that time about their sins, what do they do? They killed the prophets. You look at the prophet Jeremiah, it just breaks my heart seeing how God’s people didn’t want to hear this hard truth that they need to put away their sin. And that’s basically the same situation that was going on in Jesus time that the Pharisees, these highly religious people, they didn’t want to hear that.

Speaker 2

They needed to have a heart surrender and give their hearts over to God and maybe confess their sins and realize that, hey, they also need a savior and that the way of Jesus is the right way, and not just trusting to their own righteousness, but rather trusting to the righteousness of Jesus, their Savior. So I hope that answers your question. Jerry, Wendy, any other thoughts on that one?

Speaker 3

Yeah, just a quick thought. I heard a really good sermon where someone mentioned if you fear the Lord, will you fear anybody else? Honestly, the fear of God is reverence to him. But yeah, I mean, if you understand God’s power and only God is when it could really wipe us out. We have absolutely nothing else to worry about. Just keep our eyes on him.

Speaker 2

Amen. And I think that’s so true. I can’t even imagine how many martyrs there have been over the last almost 2000 years. People who gave their lives for the cause of Christ. I just reminded you something really quick. When I was a child, we went to a prophecy seminar and they were talking about the Christians in the time of early Rome and they were throwing Christians into the call, seemed to get eaten by the lions. And they said every time they would kill a Christian, ten more people would join the cause and ten more people would be converted. Exactly. So it’s just kind of exactly their blood sewed the seed for the Gospel. And people were just jumping into the lines and be like, I want what they have. I want that love that I see that peace, the Holy Spirit in them. And I think that sometimes that’s just the way to lose your life. You gain your life, the first shall be last. Who loses his life shall truly gain it. And great is your reward in heaven. So, yeah, I think that there’s such a beautiful truth to that that we needed only fear God because this body is going to die anyways.

Speaker 2

But I want to have eternal life where I can be with Jesus forever. Amen.

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