Sunday-November 14, 2021
Well, good morning.
Good to see you all today. My info on the morning. Pastor is here. If you want to open up your Bibles to Hebrews chapter 6, it's where we're going to be this morning. We are concluding today. Our series looking at this idea of being resilient disciples.
Followers of Jesus who regardless of the circumstances around us are are learning to stay faithful learning to trust that even when difficult times,, even when their struggles, even when maybe we live in a world like we do today, that's not like the world. We lived in two years ago that our faith is actually strong. Our faith is strengthened because we have a God who is in control regardless of the circumstances. That's who we belong to you. And so as we have have gone through this journey, we have looked at the importance of of trusting. God that when we build a life characterized by trust in God, really ourselves in God in relationship with God, where like trees planted by the water. When we don't we find ourselves like bushes in the desert. That aren't getting what we need it and we blow away. And and we shrivel up. We looked at the importance of ridding ourselves and got through through, practice is through building relationship with him, through studying, scripture to know, God and prayer filous and responding to God In Worship by giving our lives in service to him serving others. The way we live out, this love that we have forgot. It is through through serving others. And maybe even just learning to sit still. To be quiet. Listen. Until you tell the let ourselves experience God's love for us. It's probably one of the things that we overlooked more than anything else is just being still. And being with God. Imagine what your relationships would be. Like, if you're married, imagine what your relationship with your spouse would be like, if they never stopped to take time and to just be with you. It wouldn't be a very deep relationship with it. And so often with our relationship with God, we are always on the Move. We're the ones always doing the talking.
We're working hard to give to do for. Has to come out of what we're receiving as we stopped to spend time with and we talked about this time and time again. As we hear Living Hope think about what it means to be a disciple of Jesus, a follower of Jesus. It's it's three things. We're choosing to be with Jesus. That's first and foremost be with Jesus so that we can become like Jesus. That is the goal. Paul talks about it in Galatians that he says. It's like he feels like a mother in labor who is working to give birth to these people who are filled with the fullness of Christ or Christ is fully formed in them to become like Jesus, so that we can do the kinds of things that Jesus would do. If he was living the lives, they related and we can't LeapFrog over any of those. It has to start with being with Jesus. And so we're going to conclude today, in Hebrews chapter 6:11, read verses 13 through 21 going to hit some of the verses before this as well. But this will give us a good framework when God made his promise to Abraham since there was no one greater for him to swear by he swore by himself saying, I will surely bless you and give you many descendants. And so after waiting patiently, Abraham receive what was promised people swear by someone greater than themselves. And the old confirms what is said and puts an end to all argument because God wanted to make the enchanting nature of his purpose. Very clear to The Heirs of what was promised. He confirmed it with an oath. God did this so that by two unchangeable things in which it is impossible for God. To lie. We who had fled to take hold of the Hope set before us may be greatly encouraged. We have this hope as an anchor for the soul firm and secure. It enters. The inner Sanctuary behind the curtain. Where are 4Runner. Jesus has entered on our behalf. He is become a high priest forever in the order. Of milk is a deck. So, the writer of Hebrews starts out this section by talking about Abraham, and he's doing it because he's wanting to encourage his readers, that regardless of what they're facing in their lives, the winds, the storms, the waves, all of these things, this metaphor, for all of these things in our lives that can rear up and toss us all over the place. All of these different things that can can shake us up.
That way, we can be encouraged. To continue in our faith, to keep going deeper into relationship with God. To keep trusting him more more and Abraham. He says is a great example. Abraham is somebody who lived a life of Faith, who lived a life of trust of deep trust and he had bumps and valleys. Okay, maybe like mountains and valleys. God made a promise to him that he would be the father of a great nation. and at the time,
He was about 80 years old. His wife was 80 years old and I think actually he was about 100, which I don't know how much you know about science. But that's past the age where you normally are able to get pregnant and have children. They didn't have any kids yet. They actually had to wait twenty years for God to fulfill that promise. And actually, one of the things that is synonymous with faith. That's synonymous with trust is just that patiently waiting and Abraham's an example of that, but he trusted God because God made a promise. And I can't lie. And so Abraham continue to trust to continue to obey continued to persevere and he's an encouragement for us, Abraham. Had hope.
He had this hope that God would fulfill his promises. That God would be faithful. So Abraham, left everything behind. To trust God. The Orion his life in relationship to Yahweh, God. And trusting that God would fulfill his promises. But what is Hope?
Hope is more than wishful thinking. Like I hope that we don't have any more snow or I hope that I get a pony for Christmas. I don't know. I don't really want a pony just in case anybody want don't ever for it. Dallas Willard just defined hope this way, especially the biblical type of hope. Hope is in anticipation of an expected. Good. Hope in the scriptures is this anticipation? In fact, it's a confident anticipation that there is something good that is going to happen.
Now about this hope, hope acknowledges, the truth of the situation. There are elements of optimism in Hope, but hope isn't just this frolicking through the daisies. Blindly ignorance to the problems in the struggles. Hoping knowledge is the truth of the situation. But it helps us to show up and to work through the hard stuff. Believing that something better is impossible. What are the things that psychologists have been talking about even more in the last year-and-a-half is our need for hope?
In order to get through the struggles, the difficulties in order to get through the different ups and downs. That one of the things that has been so important for us as people to get through. It is to have hope if we don't have hope we don't persevere.
And I would wager that for a lot of us in this. Last year. We had our hopes crushed in a variety of ways, because we were putting our hope in something that did not deliver on its promise.
We are putting our hope in, in different things that if this just happens and everything will be fine, and it will go back to normal, right? And it didn't happen. They were tired and we're disappointed and we're discourage. But we, as followers of Christ have something more. Hope is resilient and hope is actually a couple articles from the Journal of Psychology. Yeah, I do that on this this week.
I am both of them talked about how one of the keys to resilience to be able to bounce back to being able to endure through difficult times is hope that if you don't have hope you will not be resilient and for us as followers of Jesus Christ, according to Hebrews 6, our hope is Jesus Christ. our hope is King Jesus, and
It's that he saved us. He is saving us and that he will save those who repent and believe and that he will one day return to put everything to rights.
Our hope is that because of what Jesus has done, because of who he is because of what he's doing, we can trust that. What is now will not always be
that the struggles that we experience now will not always be
as you read through this. You could take hoping you could exchange it with something else. That would define it a little bit more clearly for us. And that is Jesus. We have Jesus. We who have fled to take hold of Jesus set before us. May be greatly encouraged and then he uses this picture. Hope is an anchor. So, I have an anchor. You do you think about Christian symbols? And this is probably not one of the things that comes to mind for you when you think about Christian symbols, right? Like maybe if I covered this part o. Yeah, there's a Christian symbol to cross. but we don't think about this fun fact during the first few centuries particularly because of of these verses and and as they discussed their hope The anchor was actually a well-known symbol that followers of Christ use to represent themselves as followers of Christ into do identify themselves with each other. First couple centuries were pretty tough for followers of Jesus. They were persecuted in ways that we would never comprehend uses torches to light parties. They were used as entertainment in the Colosseum supposedly to battle wild animals and things like that and they held tightly to this. In fact, a different Christian Graves. They found symbols like this.
Anchor. And the fish and the cross. It's all there. Another one. In a catacomb, similar type thing, the anchor. These are all from the 1st and 2nd Century, and here's another one. These symbols. We're something that the first Christians held on tightly to they held on tightly to this idea of Jesus. As our hope and anchor for our social. What is Hope do you think about an anchor? An anchor is helpful because when you're in choppy seas and you want to particular meet Lee, maybe keep your your boat from drifting off and being capsized and whatever you take your ankle and you throw it overboard. Actually. I'm rather than just have had Hazard Lee throw you overboard. What they would often do is in a smaller boat. They would send some guys out with the anchor and they would find a spot where their shirts going to catch and it's going to be secure. And they would drop anchor there and then it would lock into it. It would secure itself into whatever was there and hold tightly to that as a security. This was the connection to that. This was what held That boat in place the wind and the waves in the storm can come and the boats going to get tossed around a bit, but it's not going anywhere. Because it's held firmly by the speaker.
Then we think about what hope does we continue on here in Hebrews chapter 6, verses 19 through 20. This hope that we have in Jesus. First of all, it gives us access and presents. We got first 19, we have this hope is an anchor for the so firm and secure. It enters the inner Sanctuary behind the curtain where 4Runner Jesus has entered on our behalf is becoming high priest forever in the order of Melchizedek. Jesus, Our Hope. Anchors us into the presence of God.
He gives us access to God. He he brings us close to God, brings us to the presence of God where we could never be where we could never go. Without Jesus.
So we have this hope. That regardless of the circumstances.
We have access to the presence of God. At war with God. And that God is with us. The one who is holding everything together.
And you know what?
That's what we really need in the midst of the wind and the waves in the storm, right? We need to be anchored to something. That's not going to move. It's not going to be overwhelmed. It's not going to be overcome. And so, we are anchored to the strongest thing in all of creation and Beyond, we are anchored to the one who holds it all together.
Retired, it end. And we're connected.
Hope gives us access to the presence of God, that reminds us that God is with us that he will not forsake us. You will not abandon us.
And in that as he said, the writer says, we are firm and secure, no matter what happens.
But even before this, in 6:10.
Hope gives us the ability to serve regardless of the circumstances.
I'll start in verse 9, even though we speak like this, your friends. We are convinced of better things. In your case. The things that have to do with salvation, God is Not unjust. You will not forget your work in the love. You have shown him. As you helped his people and continue to help them this whole section. Actually. This whole letter is a letter to encourage the people of God to hold on, to the hope that they have in Jesus Christ. And he says, one of the evidences that they're holding on to that hope. Is that their persevering in loving and serving others? Here's one of the things that happens when we're not holding on to this. Hope we start to look out for Numero Uno and who's Numero Uno, that's me. I got to take care of me and in serving you taking care of you meeting your needs living in such a way that I can benefit you and help. You is not on my list of priorities, because my list of priorities starts with me and until everything's okay with me. Then I will not be serving you. I'm sorry. And I hate to tell us this, but we do this all the time, and if you find yourself with a lack of desire to, or an inability to serve others ahead of yourself, your Hope Is Anchored into something other than Jesus. I'm sorry. That's a red light flashing on the dashboard of your life. Of my life sayings. We're anchored into something else.
But when we're anchored. And to God, through Jesus. Our Hope. Rather than grasping. For whatever, we can for our firm and secure. We know that we're going to be okay. So we to love and we can serve others.
And hope he'll sister persevere verse 11. We want each of you to know the same diligence and perseverance to the very end. So that what you hope for may be fully realized. We do not want you to become lazy butt to buy to imitate. I almost said intimidate, that would have been totally different, but to imitate those who through faith and patience inherit, what has been promised faith and patience waiting. Keep persevering keep pressing on. Keep your eyes fixed on the hope that you have in Jesus so that you don't give up. We're last week Paul in 2nd. Corinthians said therefore we don't give up. We don't lose heart.
Because on the outside, we're wasting away.
Put on the inside by God's grace for being renewed every day.
He says because our light and momentary. Troubles are achieving for us a glory that outweighs everything else. So we fix our eyes, not on what is seen, But on what is unseen? Cuz things that we see right now, all this physical stuff is temporary.
But what is unseen things of God last forever? So we keep going, we don't lose heart. Because we're anchored in Jesus.
Did you go back to Romans chapter 5?
Paul speaks of Hope again. In its interesting, this progression. He takes us to Reese's there for which one. Since we have been justified through faith. We have peace with God, through our Lord Jesus Christ. We are anchored into the presence of God into peace with God. Through Jesus. Through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace, which in which we now stand against this, hope anchors Us in the presence of God gives us access to the presence of God through him. Whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we boast in the hope of the glory of God. Not only sell, but we also glory in our sufferings. Because we know that suffering produces perseverance, perseverance character and character hope. And hope does not put us to shame because God's love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us. One of the purposes of our struggles. What are the purposes of our suffering? Is to reveal to us more than we knew before. How much hope we have in Christ that our only hope is Christ that all the other hopes that we hold on to our going to follow the way that they're going to disappoint.
It's all in our sufferings. We keep trusting and it produces perseverance. And as that perseverance, Works itself anus, the character of Christ is developed in a s'more in Moore, and as we experience that character developed, in this more and more, we become more firm in that hope. I'm secure. I am firm. I am anchored into the presence of God through Jesus.
And these storms the wind and the waves, they can have their best shot, but God is my refuge and my strength and not anchored there because of Jesus. 46cc at just the right time. When we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly, very rarely. Will anyone die for a righteous person? Look for a good person. Someone might possibly dare to die. But God demonstrates his own love for us in this while we were still sinners Christ died for us. Since we have now, been justified by his blood, how much more shall we be saved from God's Wrath through him, for a while. We were God's enemies. We were reconciled to him through the death of his son. How much more having been reconciled shall we receive through his life? Not only is this so but we also boast in God through our Lord Jesus Christ through whom we have now received reconciliation.
We have this hope. Is an anchor for our souls?
And no matter what's going on.
We are anchored into relationship with God through Jesus. We belong to him. It. So, the writer of Hebrews. Says this.
We who have fled to take hold of the Hope set before us may be greatly encouraged. Taking hold. Of this hope. This whole time. I've been holding on to this anchor. There's been more than the sacred here, right? There's a rope. And for those of you who care. I did, tie a good nautical anchor. So did a lot of research on that. Make sure I got it right. This anchor doesn't do any good for us if we're not holding on to it and obviously doesn't do a whole lot of good for us if we're just trying to hold on to the Anchor like that, right? How long can you hold your breath?
What we hold on to. Is this rope, this rope that connects us to the anchor? And what's that? Well, if you been listening the last six or seven weeks, we would talk to you about it. Before. Five or six weeks before that. We were talking about it in the previous series and and we talked about it a lot. We're going to keep talking about it and it's simply that we need to be intentional about our relationship with God. What are the things that you do that are intentional about be to help you to be with Jesus, to hold on to Jesus? Such as studying scripture to know, God taking time.
Spend time. Taking hold of your relationship with Jesus being intentional about your relationship with Jesus by spending time together with him in his work. How about prayerfulness? We do this in all kinds of ways. We can just have a conversation with god, we can take time to, just be still be silent in, to listen, which is so important. We overlooked it all the time.
Praying for ourselves praying for others prayers, just that conversation, that we have with God as we entrust ourselves to him. Go to life of worship. Recognizing the greatness of God and living in response to Jesus, which means that we're going to be intentional about obeying. Jesus. Intentional about loving others and serving others.
intentional about caring for others intentional about Using the gifts and talents and opportunities that God has given us.
The benefit of others, which brings glory to him. Or just acknowledging reality that he loves us. More than we could ever know. And surrendering to that. An overflowing that love to others.
To the degree to, which we are intentional. About building. In fostering a relationship with Jesus being with Jesus is the degree to which we are taking hold of the help.
You can't just say, yes. I'm going to take hold of it and then go on and live your life. And think that you're taking hold of this help. You might be, you might get lucky.
This phrase, take hold of the hope is a phrase that describes holding on fiercely with tenacity and other words with everything I've got.
She is, I'm going to hold on to you. You're not going to be an afterthought. You're not going to be something that I give just a little bit of my time to every week and I get my tank filled up and then I go as far as I can before I hit him. So I can Coast in on Sunday mornings and get filled up again.
You're the first thing I think about is the day begins in your the last thing I want to think about is the day ends and I want to be in conversation with you all. Throughout the day. I want to be looking for what you're doing. I want to respond to it.
How tenacious are you in holding on to the hope?
That we have in Jesus.
What are the storms in your life? What are some of the things that right now? Feel like they're the big storms? We're if you're not anchored into something secure, you're going to capsize, you're going to lose control. You're going to
Metaphorically this song. Every single one of us is experiencing those. It is the way of life in this Fallen World.
Did you think about your storms? Where's your hope? What are you anchoring yourself into?
Where are you looking to for your help?
Is it your job? Is it some people in your lives? Is it the government? Politics. Is it money? If I can just get enough of this will be? Okay. Let me see if I seen lately. That number you have to get, it's just gone up. You're going to have a hard time catching it and it's not going to work. Ultimately. Is it pleasure? Is it Escape?
What is it? Is Jesus.
And are you holding on to him? When everything. He's got.
I want to give you something where you can actually actively going to take this stand and say I'm Jesus. I need you to be my anchor. We're going to after I pray, we're going to respond and worship to sing a song together, and I'm going to take This anchor and I'm going to kind of string it up over there and there's two music stands. And on each one. There are some tags and as we're responding and worship. The guy lays it on your heart.
But there's a storm in your life that you. You need him to be your hope. You need him to be your anchor firm and secure.
I'd invite you to just come up here and write that on there and then just tied to the Rope as a way of saying I'm holding on.
Jesus, this is my storm and I need you. It was everything I've got. I want to hold on to you. Considering the song.
Trans a little distractible, but she'll be fine home. Just come up and hang that on. There is an act of worship saying Jesus. I hand this over to you. You're my hope. You're my anchor. So Jesus.
First of all, forgive us for all of the ways that we have looked to other things or, or other people, or even ourselves to be the anchor. We are hope.
We know it doesn't work, but we keep going back to it.
Jesus. You are the only one who will never disappoint. You are. The only one who can anchor us into relationship with God. And as you do that, you actually make us Sons and Daughters of God. You are dearly loved how to spell amazing. Jesus, I pray that you would bring to mine for us. The ways that we need to trust you.
And that is an offering of worship. We will experience the peace and the joy. It comes from anchoring those things to you. So that
We can be free to love and to serve others. So that we can persevere knowing that things will not always be this way. That one day, you will put everything to rights. There will be no more fear. There will be no more staying. There will be no more Brokenness. There'll be no more heartache and the list goes on and on there will be you and there will be joy in there. Will be Shalom, peace. Everything will be as it should be. The Jesus. Our Hope. Our only hope. We come to you with gratitude in the house. In your name.
Text Dan and worship.
He came to the world, you created.
Dating a crown for across. You willingly your innocent life.
Screaming Mimi with you.
Is the u.s. In war?
And my treasure. I can't live without you.
Can you see my desires and dreams?
At your feet. My desires and dreams.
Is Mom. Love you?
Yes, song is if you can do that. Yes. I love you.
Change me like only you can. Here with my heart in your head. By the way, I pray make me.
Dying to know who you are. You shown us the way to your heart.
father, I pray make me
Change me like only you here with my heart and your head. Why do I pee make me?
Dying to know who you shown us the way to your house. Father, I pray Make Me Like Jesus.
Yes, I love you. Take.
If you want, I'll give you lots of me.
Yes, I love you is all I need.
Sing the chorus one.
Do you like God tells you?
Send it to me the prayer.
If more of you means less to me, yes, it is.
Is more. means less than
Father God, this is it. This is what, you know, we need more than anything else in. This is what you want.
Do you want us? You want us to take, hold of you? Since you can make us more and more like Jesus.
And got it as an act of worship.
In response to your mercy, we give these things. We give everything to you.
Because you're the only one who can keep us firm and secure.
Mirror Minus that, because
We are anchored into relationship with you. The storms can come. The wind can blow the waves crash against us and we might get a little seasick. We might get tossed around a little bit.
But we are firm and secure. Because we're anchored into the Rock.
We are anchored into. The God is Sovereign over everything.
The guy who loves us more than we can comprehend.
Thank you for being trustworthy. Thank you for never disappointing for never failing. May we be a people? Kool-Aid, anchored to you.
Every moment of every day, in everything we do and we be a church that's anchored into you as a community and everything. We do that, no matter what happens.
We're firm insecure because we're taking hold of the help. We're taking hold of Christ. Jesus with everything we've got.
Your name? Amen, Brothers and Sisters of the living. Hope the family as you go from here, may, you know, the peace that comes from knowing that you are firm and secure as you take. Hold of Jesus with everything you've got. May you be resilient as a follower of Jesus and may your light shine with the hope of the Gospel. Go in his grace with all of the peace that he gives you and be a blessing this week. God bless and have a great day.