Sermons

Hope Glorifies

Is gospel hope a Christ-exalting, transformative testimony in your life? In this message the last two of four key dynamics of gospel hope are considered. While the gospel and God’s gracious work in Christ serves hope, here hope serves to sanctify the sinner and glorify God. The cosmic tragedy of the curse is purposed for the glory of hope because hope glorifies God and promotes the greatest good in the creature.
  • Notes

There is a grace of God that proves to be the sweetest of all in times of distress.

She comforts us in our miseries and dries our cold tears with the warmth of a love;
she understands mourning, but guards us from despair.

She strengthens like no other;
with her, tremendous burdens can be carried through difficult seasons.

She holds your head while it aches, and your hand when darkness overshadows you;
when you have no ambition to go on, she is the among the greatest of encouragers.

She is a companion to the lonely and a counselor to the brokenhearted.
She is the sweetest medicine for the poor in spirit and grieving heart.
She always stands ready to serve, even after she has been forgotten for a while.

She is an anchor to the soul—as the winds blow, the storms beat, and the waves swell.

She brings great liberty to the heavy-laden; she shines the light of God’s word in dark and frightening situations; she cuts through impossible circumstances, leading you in the ways of God.

She always has her eyes on her Lord and to the future.
She does not look at appearances but looks beyond façades; she sees and expects what no one else can.
She assures us that we will arrive at her Lord’s chambers, even if the journey may not be safe,
and so delights to remind us what comforts await us in her homeland.

She whispers to our hearts such sweet thoughts of glory and joy.

She tells of rest and peace, of holiness and purity, of righteousness, goodness, endless satisfaction, joy, exceeding triumphs, relief from pain and suffering, the final removal of sin, tears, and the curse; a new heaven and new earth, resurrection from the dead, and the restoration of all things; of exuberant music, exhilarating praise, and pleasures forevermore.

But more than all this, she says, “God is enough!”
She is supremely centered and aimed at God; coming from the Father, through the Son, and in the power of the Holy Spirit.

She is joyfully driven by the knowledge of the Holy. She will not put us to shame because the love of God has been poured-out into our hearts.

She will prevail; she cannot fail; Christ is her life; the Gospel her message; Faith and Love her companions—Hope is her name.

 

The greater your view of Christ, the greater your hope in God. Hope serves a significant role in Colossians; it is a key trait of God-centeredness.

There are a number of parallels between Colossians 1:3-14 and Ephesians 1:16-18 (i.e. giving thanks, not ceasing in prayer, knowledge of the will of God, spiritual wisdom, and the inheritance of the saints), with hope in Christ as the common cause of petition and praise. In Ephesians 1:18, Paul states the reason for his prayers: “that you may know what is the hope to which he has called you.” We can safely apply this principle here in Colossians; this message is purposed so “that you may know what is the hope to which he has called you.”

Christians are called to one hope: “you were called to the one hope that belongs to your call” (Eph 4:4). We are to continually hope in God (Ps 71:14) and abounding in hope: “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope” (Rom 15:13). The opposite of hope would be unbelief (Heb 3), despair and unshakable grief (1 Thess 4:13-17), shame (Rom 5:5), disappointment (Phil 1:20), and depression and longing for life to end (Job 3:20-21).

Ephesians 2:12 tells us that apart from Christ, there is no hope. “Remember that you were at that time separated from Christ, alienated from the commonwealth of Israel and strangers to the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world” (Eph 2:12). As water is to the plant, so hope is to life. Job reminds us, “Such are the paths of all who forget God; the hope of the godless shall perish” (Job 8:13). When hope is placed in someone or something other than God it is nearly always marked out as something negative, evil, wicked, foolish, or sinful.

So hope is commanded by God: “As for the rich in this present age, charge them not to be haughty, nor to set their hopes on the uncertainty of riches, but on God, who richly provides us with everything to enjoy” (1 Tim 6:17); “O Israel, hope in the LORD from this time forth and forevermore” (Ps 131:3).

There are no hopeless situations with God, only Godless situations without hope.
To have God is to have hope; to be godless is to be hopeless.   Where there is God, there is hope—no matter the appearance or experience. 
 

Hebrews 10:23 tells us, “Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for he who promised is faithful.” Hope is the anticipation of the fulfillment of God’s promises.

Dear Christian, never despair. In the worst conditions of temporal distress; when steeped in pain, captive to declining health, worn with sickness, heartbroken, grieved, mourning loss, troubled by others, loaded with the pressure of family sorrow or family sin, struggling with employment, burdened with financial hardship, weak and weary in spirit, when you struggle against sin, despair not! Still search and strive to feel the warmth of hope in the light of God’s promises; keep up your hope in God that you might be comforted in seasons of darkness and treks through dry and weary lands. Never despair! The greatest evils in this world, God has placed on them a firm limitation, such that the one qualified in Christ can call them “light” and “momentary” afflictions, unworthy to be compared to the glory that is to be revealed (Rom 8:18; 2 Cor 4:17).

Man was not made to find heaven under the curse. Great things without hope in the future will not content, but even the smallest of things with hope can greatly satisfy. Thomas Brooks once said:

The keeping up of those hopes will be the keeping up of your hearts; the keeping up of these hopes will be the bettering of your hearts; the keeping up of these hopes will make every bitter sweet, and every sweet more sweet; the keeping up of these hopes will make you bear much for God, and do much for God. … in the midst of all his worldly delights, comforts, and contents, oh these are not the delights, the comforts, the contents that my soul looks for, that my soul expects and hopes to enjoy. I look and hope for choicer delights, for sweeter comforts, for more satisfying contents, and for more durable riches. … I hope for better things than any the world can give to me, or than any that Satan can take from me. A Christian is always rich in hope, though he hath not always a penny in hand.

  • Main Service
  • Delivered at Morgan Hill (CCMH)
  • MP3 31.21 MB

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