Today for my sermon I would like to do something a little different.
I would like to talk about Scripture verses that give us hope.
To have hope means that we have confidence in what God will do for us now and in what God will do for us in the future.
To have hope means that we trust in God’s grace today and we trust in God’s future grace.
To have hope means you keep the candle burning within your own heart.
You keep the light alive.
Scripture verses that offer hope keeps us following by faith in the ways of our Lord.
These verses bring comfort in times of need, crisis, or in facing difficult challenges in life.
I offer these Bible verses to you today to ponder and to reflect upon.
The first passage I want to bring to your attention this morning is from Hebrews chapter 11 verse 1:
Faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.
What does this verse mean?
We believe by faith that the way things are now will be different in the future.
We believe that things will be better, much better.
That God’s future grace will extend upon us in ways that we cannot even image in the present time.
In Christ the future will always be better.
This does not mean that bad things will not happen to us here on earth but what it does mean is that we have hope in God’s gift of salvation.
That one glorious day God will save us from all that steals life from us.
The pain and suffering that we experience now will be transmuted to joy and happiness and blessing.
The word transmuted means to change something to a higher form.
What we experience in life especially our present sufferings will be transformed into joy.
Like lead being transmuted into gold so will our lives here on earth be transmuted into eternal life with God in heaven.
This leads us to our next verse of Scripture that again offers us hope.
From Romans chapter 8 verse 18:
For I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed to us.
Think about this… someday we will share in the glory of God.
This means that we will share in God’s joy, in God’s happiness, in God’s delight.
No more will pain or suffering define who we are and how we live life.
Instead our presence will be surrounded by the light and presence of God.
From Isaiah 60: 19:
The sun will no more be your light by day, nor will the brightness of the moon shine on you, for the Lord will be your everlasting light, and your God will be your glory.
And again from Revelation 22: 5:
There will be no more night. They will not need the light of a lamp or the light of the sun, for the Lord God will give them light.
And they will reign for ever and ever.
The darkness will disappear in the light.
God’s people will live in the heavenly light which has no opposite.
No darkness can touch this light.
This light from God only knows light.
In this light we will be able to see clearly and be fully known before God.
1 Corinthians 13: 12
For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face.
Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.
We cannot understand everything now.
Our ability to see, no matter how good that is, will only be partial.
Our understanding of who God is and even how we understand one another and ourselves is incomplete.
Our present understanding of God is as nothing when compared with who God really is.
We have hope that one day God will reveal God’s self to us.
One day we will fully see.
Until then we have hope that that day will come and that we will be embraced by our Lord and that we will be fully known by our Lord.
Think about how good it feels to really have some understand you and listen to you.
Someone who really takes the time to get to know you.
Now think about this happening with God.
God will reveal to us God’s true nature, who God really is and by doing so we will know who we are because we are made in God’s image.
The likeness of who God is will reveal to us the likeness of who we really are.
Hebrews 10: 23:
Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful.
In the Bible God makes promises to us again and again and again.
By faith let us hold to the promises that we proclaim.
God is faithful and we put our trust in God’s faithfulness.
God’s faithfulness was most clearly revealed to us on the cross where Jesus walked that road to Calvary and was faithful to us even in to death on the cross.
Philippians 2: 8:
And being found in the fashion of a man, he humbled himself and became obedient unto death – even the death of the cross.
Last Sunday in my sermon I spoke about God’s persistent, stubborn love.
God’s love dares not quit and it continues until it gets there, until God’s love reaches our hearts.
In the end our ultimate hope is in sharing in God’s grace and love.
This brings me to the last Bible verse I would like to share with you this morning.
Psalm 143: 8
Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love, for I have put my trust in you. Show me the way I should go, for to you I entrust my life.
When we follow by faith God will not let us down.
His presence is with us now and his presence will be fully with us in the future.
This is our hope.
Our faith and hope is solid and secure from the promises we receive from Scripture that speak to God’s care and God’s lovingkindness upon us.
In life we go to God for hope and life.
Look to the Scriptures to find hope and meaning for your life.
We will not let our hope die but through the power and presence of the Holy Spirit in our lives we will strive to get up each and every day with hope on our minds and hearts.
If we are in despair this hope will raise us out of despair.
We will find a way in and through our losses and in our grieving.
We will find a way through as the Lord leads us and we will follow by faith with hope shinning within our souls.
With a great hope the light will carry on.