Do not be afraid . . . a Savior has been born to you. Luke 2:10–11
Linus, in the Peanuts comic strip, is best known for his blue security blanket. He carries it everywhere and isn’t embarrassed at needing it for comfort. His sister Lucy especially dislikes the blanket and often tries to get rid of it. She buries it, makes it into a kite, and uses it for a science fair project. Linus too knows he should be less dependent on his blanket and lets it go from time to time, always to take it back.
In the movie A Charlie Brown Christmas, when a frustrated Charlie Brown asks, “Isn’t there anyone who knows what Christmas is all about?” Linus, with his security blanket in hand, steps center stage and quotes Luke 2:8–14. In the middle of his recitation, as he says, “Fear not,” he drops his blanket—the thing he clung to when afraid.
What is it about Christmas that reminds us we don’t need to fear? The angels that appeared to the shepherds said, “Do not be afraid . . . a Savior has been born to you” (Luke 2:10–11).
Jesus is “God with us” (Matthew 1:23). We have His very presence through His Holy Spirit, the true Comforter (John 14:16), so we don’t need to fear. We can let go of our “security blankets” and trust in Him.
What are you afraid of? How can the Holy Spirit’s presence help you with what troubles you?
I’m still learning, God, that You’re the greatest Comforter. Help me to let go of the things that give me false security, and please guide me to cling to You.
The verb translated “I bring you good news” in Luke 2:10 is euangelizo, from the same root as euangelion, the New Testament’s word for “gospel.” In its original context, it’s a word that would have carried tremendous weight, a forcefulness that we today might not notice due to overfamiliarity with it. A “gospel” proclamation was a royal announcement proclaiming that a particular king was in charge. At the time of Jesus, the Roman Empire described its own reign as good news.
In Luke 2, the heavenly choir proclaimed that a different King was really in charge and at work to restore God’s kingdom of justice and peace through the birth of Jesus Christ. After Jesus’ death and resurrection, His followers carried on the profoundly countercultural message of a different “good news” of the rule of Christ and a profoundly different kingdom than that of Rome.