Monday, October 23, 2017

Fulfilling Hope

Hope That Never Fails

After our Lord ascended to Heaven He told us, "I will not leave you orphans; I will come to you "...the world will not see Me, but you will see Me..." (John 14:18-19 NKJV). In this instance the Lord gave us hope of His indwelling Holy Spirit and the Hope of such a promise.

Furthermore, in Romans we read "For in this hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it  patience" (Romans 8:24-25). In another Scripture, we are encouraged that "...according to His great mercy, He has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead" (1 Peter 1:3).

Brethren, this kind of article is needed Christ our hope needs our attention daily! Let's hope in Him and not just on the advancement of our earthly careers. When our years winds down and our bodies becoming weary, when our careers starts or end and when the Lord comes or death catches up with us, hope will be there as security to our futures. Let us continue to hope in Christ His precious promises are unshakeable. Now, the above Scriptures remind us of God's eternal promises. There is no good promise of God that ever failed. Throughout the history of Israel, the Lord gave them many promises which served as hope that carried them and their descendants well into the future (Isaiah 43:1-13). The Lord Almighty created hope through His promises, which are vested in His faithfulness and holiness. This is a hope based on genuine faith. It is not just a mere wish for something, but in essence it is placing a strong confidence in God's abilities to fulfill our hopes and expectations (Psalm 42:5; 71:5; Romans 4:18; Hebrews 11:1). Eternal Glory be to Yahweh!

Given to our ever-changing environment politically and otherwise it is always so tempting to for us as people to put our hope in other things than on the Lord, and this results in us moving subtly away from the Lord. In addition, while we are writing about hope, there is need to mention faith as a co-pillar of our Christian belief in this article. Faith and hope are inseparable (Romans 5: 1-5; Galatians 5:5; 1 Peter 1:21). Therefore those without God have no faith nor any hope in the promises God has for "...those who through faith and patience inherit the promises" (Hebrews 6:11-12 NKJV).

What is Our Greatest Hope as Christians?

Some 22 years ago, I was living in an apartment in Johannesburg city centre. Due to economic conditions I lost my first job through retrenchment. I got my last pay cheque and paid my rent, and I used some of the money to buy myself a bed. I did not panic of losing my apartment; I hoped in the Lord to bless me with a new job and after prayer and fasting, my hope was met and I got blessed with a new and better paying job. Naturally, people with no faith run to man for help and not to the Lord; this is their greatest loss.  Unfavorable  circumstances should require us to act by faith, hoping on God's flawless promises. I don't want to sound like a prosperity teacher; however, the Lord promised to supply our needs (Matthew 7:7; Philippians 4:19), to heal us (Isaiah 53:5-6), and He also promised us Heaven and eternal life (John 3:16; 14:2-4). The only condition being obedience (John 15:7).

Moreover, our greatest hope is the return of the Lord Jesus Christ, when we will experience the fullness of our salvation and enter with the Lord into the glory of the new age (1 Corinthians 15:19-23; Ephesians 1:18; Colossians 1:17; 1 Thessalonians 5:8). As it is, for the Christian to have the hope of the Lord's return means to eagerly look forward into the future, and the basis of such hope is our Lord's atoning death and His glorious resurrection. Therefore our Lord's entrance into His glory guarantees our entrance and glory (Colossians 1:5; Hebrews 6:19; 1 Peter 1:18-21).

I would like to add this: "By its very nature, hope means that the thing hoped for has not yet arrived. Christ has not yet returned, so Christians must have patience as we wait for our final salvation. We have received God's promises and the Holy Spirit (Hebrews 11:1, 39-40; Romans 8:23-25). This patience therefore has no element of doubt, for our hope is the anticipation of something that is absolutely certain. Like I alluded elsewhere, God confirms the hope of salvation by giving us His Holy Spirit. We have a living hope within us until the day our hope is fulfilled. The Holy Spirit is God's mark of permanent ownership upon our lives (2 Corinthians 1:22; Ephesians 1:13-14; 4:30).

Finally, the hope we have received from the Lord gives our lives purpose and stability (Romans 15:13; Colossians 3:1-4; 1 Thessalonians 1:3). Having said that, we should work hard through prayer and obedience to keep ourselves free from sin because our day of salvation is also our day of reckoning (1 John 3:2-3; Matthew 24:45-46; 2 Corinthians 5:10).

In closing, may the word of the Lord through these short, weekly articles increase your faith and hope in Christ Jesus our Lord. Remember, He is the One who commands what we should write and He knows about you. Take heart, the Lord is near!

If you are not yet born again, here is a Prayer of Sincere Repentance to get you started in this great journey of hope. For any questions or comments on this article or our ministry, please contact us.

Blessed Hope,

Brother Glenn.