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Sermon #5383

The Fear of Death

A Sermon on Luke 12:4-5


Luke 12:4-5 ESV KJV
“I tell you, my friends, do not fear those who kill the body, and after that have nothing more that they can do. But I will warn you whom to fear: fear him who, after he has killed, has authority to cast into hell. Yes, I tell you, fear him! …

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Sermon Description

In his sermon on Luke 12:4–5 titled “The Fear of Death,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones orients his message around an essential and crucial topic: how the Christian is supposed to live in the world. He focuses on this Scripture where Christ warns His disciples to not fear death, but to fear He who can punish the soul. This fear of death, Dr. Lloyd-Jones says, is how most of the world chooses to live. It is this fear that causes people to tremble at war, weather, and decline. For the Christian, this fear might tempt a person to deny Christ as Peter did. However, Dr. Lloyd-Jones says that this fear has no grounds. The evil of people can only do so much to the body, but they cannot touch the soul. God is the only one with that power. Dr. Lloyd-Jones points out that Jesus also acknowledges the pain in the world and the fact that there will always be tribulation. But this pain has no real power because it can do nothing to change a person’s eternal standing with God. In closing, he reminds the listener of the liberating hope that is found within Jesus and how it is through Him that fear is replaced with security—the promise of eternity with God.

Sermon Breakdown

  1. The supreme tragedy in the world is that the world won't listen to the message of the Bible.
  2. The Bible never promises to change the world or circumstances. It says we will have tribulations.
  3. The Bible is realistic and doesn't provide escapism. It helps us face facts honestly.
  4. The Bible teaches us how to think clearly in the midst of difficulties.
  5. Fear and panic come from wrong thinking and a lack of understanding of vital truths.
  6. Man's troubles come from a false view of himself. He thinks only of himself in terms of his body, not his soul.
  7. Man thinks only of his relationships to other men, not to God. He fears man, not God.
  8. Man thinks only in terms of time, not eternity. He neglects the destiny of his soul.
  9. This wrong view of self leads man to be concerned with the wrong problems, ignore important questions, and reject Christ.
  10. Christ shows us the danger of being governed by circumstances and teaches us to master them.
  11. Christ teaches us not to fear those who can only kill the body, but to fear God who judges the soul.
  12. Hell is a place of eternal destruction and torment. Heaven is eternal bliss with God.
  13. The Christian is not afraid of death because Christ has conquered it. Death is but the gate of life immortal.
  14. We must not think only of the body, men, and time. We must consider the soul, God, and eternity.
  15. Christ came to save us from hell and ensure us of heaven. We must not reject him.

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Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones

Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones (1899-1981) was a Welsh evangelical minister who preached and taught in the Reformed tradition. His principal ministry was at Westminster Chapel, in central London, from 1939-1968, where he delivered multi-year expositions on books of the bible such as Romans, Ephesians and the Gospel of John. In addition to the MLJ Trust’s collection of 1,600 of these sermons in audio format, most of these great sermon series are available in book form (including a 14 volume collection of the Romans sermons), as are other series such as "Spiritual Depression", "Studies in the Sermon on the Mount" and "Great Biblical Doctrines". He is considered by many evangelical leaders today to be an authority on biblical truth and the sufficiency of Scripture.