Hope In Christ
The word Hope…is used 65 times in the epistles of the new testament
What is this HOPE that Christians are supposed to have?
What are we supposed to be hoping for…?
Are we hoping that:
God will heal us
God will give us an easier existence
God will deliver us from evil ( many saints over the centuries were not delivered from evil people and circumstances)
God will provide a financial miracle - husband - a wife - a good job
What do we spend most of our time HOPING for ?
How many of our hopes are focused on us and our needs - wants - desires?
We are being called into maturity , able to properly respond to life’s challenges, setbacks and unfair circumstances
HERE IS THE DEFINITION OF MATURE GOD INSPIRED HOPE
Quote from Father Gregory Boyle-Barking to the Choir
Hope is not about some assurance that everything will work out but rather about a confidence that purpose and luminous meaning can be found there, no matter how things unfold.
Biblical example of this kind of Hope
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! By his great mercy he has given us a new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you, who are being protected by the power of God through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. In this you rejoice, even if now for a little while you have had to suffer various trials, so that the genuineness of your faith—being more precious than gold that, though perishable, is tested by fire—may be found to result in praise and glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed. Although you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and rejoice with an indescribable and glorious joy,
A Living Hope in struggle
This Hope is not based in everything working out in our trial and us being delivered from it
Our salvation that awaits us in heaven
Understanding in trials that our faith is being pressure cooked to completion resulting in praise, glory, and honor (if we allow it)
If we understand these two truths
We will be able to say with honesty:
Although you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and rejoice with an indescribable and glorious joy,
Paul had learned this truth through all of the trials he endured
Hope comes through years of walking with Christ and realizing that even the worst of situations can work to the glory of God
Hope is to know God well enough to have a valid reason that our hope
Hope is not a hand ringing nervous “oh I hope it works out”…but…an assurance that God’s purpose is all that matters.
Peace is the result of having a mature hope in Christ
Paul singing in Prison
A mob quickly formed against Paul and Silas, and the city officials ordered them stripped and beaten with wooden rods. They were severely beaten, and then they were thrown into prison. The jailer was ordered to make sure they didn’t escape. So the jailer put them into the inner dungeon and clamped their feet in the stocks. Around midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the other prisoners were listening.
Paul had a divine hope that allowed him to have peace
What are you hoping in today
How do you respond to trials and struggles
Our response to difficulties displays
Our true level of faith
What our hope is based on
God making everything better
God uses everything for his Glory