Call me a skeptic, but I have basically come to accept the fact that my “most important” information is readily available, out there in cyberland, to anyone who may want to use it. How many notices about the security of your personal information have you received? I have had one from an employer. I have had one from a school. Both indicated they had security issues where some of my “most important” information may have been at risk.
Did you see the news last week? Even the US government was accessed in such a way that important information was breached. Reading the headlines, this data breach may have impacted up to 4 million people.
Yes, I know Jesus was probably not thinking of cyber security when he said these words, but still…
26 “Therefore, don’t be afraid of those people because nothing is hidden that won’t be revealed, and nothing secret that won’t be brought out into the open. 27 What I say to you in the darkness, tell in the light; and what you hear whispered, announce from the rooftops. 28 Don’t be afraid of those who kill the body but can’t kill the soul. Instead, be afraid of the one who can destroy both body and soul in hell. 29 Aren’t two sparrows sold for a small coin? But not one of them will fall to the ground without your Father knowing about it already. 30 Even the hairs of your head are all counted. 31 Don’t be afraid. You are worth more than many sparrows. (Matthew 10)
No, this is not Jesus proclaiming that nothing is secure. This is not Jesus declaring the Internet is evil.
These are Jesus’ words to his disciples before he sends them out. He is sending them out to proclaim that the kingdom of heaven has come near. What strikes me though is that Jesus seems to know this will not be an easy task.
Whatever they need for their journey, they are to get while on their journey. They are to stay with whoever will give them room. He tells them:
16 “Look, I’m sending you as sheep among wolves. Therefore, be wise as snakes and innocent as doves. 17 Watch out for people—because they will hand you over to councils and they will beat you in their synagogues. 18 They will haul you in front of governors and even kings because of me so that you may give your testimony to them and to the Gentiles. 19 Whenever they hand you over, don’t worry about how to speak or what you will say, because what you can say will be given to you at that moment. 20 You aren’t doing the talking, but the Spirit of my Father is doing the talking through you.
And these words:
21 Brothers and sisters will hand each other over to be executed. A father will turn his child in. Children will defy their parents and have them executed. 22 Everyone will hate you on account of my name. But whoever stands firm until the end will be saved. 23 Whenever they harass you in one city, escape to the next, because I assure that you will not go through all the cities of Israel before the Human One comes.
Great; come follow me and then I will send you out without anything into a land that may or may not receive you. Actually, many will hate you. You will feel like a sheep among wolves. But… here is where Jesus shares the verses we started with. Allow me to emphasize the one verse:
28 Don’t be afraid of those who kill the body but can’t kill the soul. Instead, be afraid of the one who can destroy both body and soul in hell.
I confess. I worry and fear. I fear things I should not fear, and I do that more than I should. I need this reminder. I need the reminder too that there were things to be afraid of from the beginning. Fear is not new. Jesus is not surprised by our fear. Jesus is not and will not be surprised by what happens tomorrow.
Our role as followers on this journey has not and does not change no matter what we read in the news. We are to listen. We are to go. We are to proclaim the message he tells us to proclaim.
(All scripture cited above from Common English Bible Copyright © 2011)