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Read Psalm 130. TEXT: But the angel said to him,
"Do not be afraid Zechariah ...." (Luke 1:13a).

Zechariah stands trembling in terror. His good intentions
and his blameless life mean nothing now. The angel's
holiness fills him with a painful awareness of his impure
heart, mind and soul. With rising dread he waits to hear
the angel explain the reason for this startling appearance.

The angel does not keep Zechariah waiting in suspense.
Immediately, he says, "Do not be afraid, Zechariah."
Because of Zechariah's trust in God's salvation, the Lord
was pleased to accept his offering of incense. He did not
send His angel to punish him, but to bring him amazing
good news.
When you experience good times in life are you waiting
on pins and needles for the other shoe to drop? Do you
live in fear, carrying an enduring dread of what is coming
on the horizon? God has come to remove that fear and
dread once and for all.

The whole theme of this Christmas season is "Do not be
afraid." In the coming days as we retrace the story of our
Savior's birth, we will see other angel visitations, and
each time hear those same words: "Do not be afraid."

God is not out to get you. He sent His Son to save you, to
fill your earthly life with peace, hope and joy. When this
life ends, He will remove your impurity forever. You will
experience eternal joy in His presence--all because of
Jesus' birth, life, death and resurrection.

Lord God, thank You that You do not come to me in
great power and wrath, but in a Baby filled with tender
love and mercy--Your dear Son Jesus Christ. Amen.

(By Rev. Wayne Palmer Lutheran Hour Ministries
December 3, 2015)

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