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Overflow With Hope

Overflow With Hope

1 Peter 3:13-17  13 Now who is there to harm you if you are zealous for what is good?14 But even if you should suffer for righteousness' sake, you will be blessed. Have no fear of them, nor be troubled, 15 but in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect, 16 having a good conscience, so that, when you are slandered, those who revile your good behavior in Christ may be put to shame.

Hope With Confidence

Are you able to make a defense for the hope that is within you?
In other words are you able to explain why it is that you have such hope?
What is this hope?

Man’s view of hope is wishful thinking. I hope I get a corvette for Christmas. I hope I get that job. It is based off of uncertainty.  We are not talking about wishful thinking.

Hope- joyful and confident expectation of eternal salvation.
Christian hope is having confidence in what God has promised, knowing that it will come to pass. It is something absolute and goes beyond our wishful thinking.

How many of you are confident in the fact that you are saved?
Are you confident of the fact that Jesus is living on the inside of you?
Are you confident in what lies ahead for you as a believer in Christ?

Despite living in a world of uncertainties, Gods’ promises are certain. Because they are certain, we have hope.  David knew of the certainty of our God.

Psalm 28:7 (ESV)  The Lord is my strength and my shield; in him my heart trusts, and I am helped;  my heart exults, and with my song I give thanks to him.

David was confident that God will help those who trust in or put their hope in Him.
So many people put their hope in riches or the things of this world. They do not have the same confidence that we have as Christians.

When Paul is talking about this hope it is as though He is saying there will be something noticeably different about a person who has their hope in Jesus.  He is also saying that people will notice this hope...“always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you.”

In other words, there is something different about you. Your behavior is different, your character is different, your words are different there is something different about you. What is it? (the world may ask)  It is the hope that is inside of you. You are living for the hope of eternal glory, while others are just hoping to obtain earthly glory.

Everything changes about us when we realize that we are living for an imperishable crown.
Every decision we make, every response to others around us, and ultimately our focus on life is affected by the hope of eternal glory living on the inside of us.

If we are living as though heaven is our home and this earth is only temporary, then it causes us to be more heavenly minded knowing that the struggles here on earth are only temporary.
Again, this is not wishful thinking this is an absolute promise of God.

For a moment, I would like to instill some hope inside of you. If you are a born again Christian, then these next few statements should excite you and energize your hope.

• First we realize that our hope is in Jesus Christ the Lord. He is the fulfillment of the Old testament promises.

1 Peter 1:3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! 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.

We are born again to a living hope through Jesus Christ. A living hope implies an enduring, unending hope. In other words before Christ we had no hope.  Now that we are in Christ we not only have hope but we have a living hope. We have a hope for what that which absolutely awaits us in the future.

• We have the hope that the dead that are in Christ will rise again and we will be reunited with them but more importantly we will forever be with the Lord.

1 Thessalonians 4:13-17  But we do not want you to be uninformed, brothers, about those who are asleep, that you may not grieve as others do who have no hope.14 For since we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so, through Jesus, God will bring with him those who have fallen asleep.  16 For the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a cry of command, with the voice of an archangel, and with the sound of the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. 17 Then we who are alive, who are left, will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we will always be with the Lord.

For the believers, we will see again those who have died in Christ. But more importantly we will see the Son of God face to face. He is coming back for us!

• Our bodies and all of the creation will be redeemed.

Philippians 3:21  "But our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, 21 who will transform our lowly body to be like his glorious body, by the power that enables him even to subject all things to himself."

If you had not been excited up to this point, this should make you jump out of your seat.  Your body, which has been under the curse of sin, which has experienced all sorts of diseases, ailments, inabilities and limits will be glorified. In other words, your new body will be just like Christ’s glorified body.

Remember after He rose from the dead, He showed himself to those who were gathered in an upper room. He suddenly appeared to them. He had the ability to go through walls. Yet He had a physical body which he bid Thomas to touch.

With your new glorified body, there will be no limits.

Our gifts and talents will be magnified and we will use them to glorify the Lord.

A singer will be able to sing with a perfection never achieved, and a painter will be able to paint with a glory never imagined. (build with my glorified body)

The blind will see; the deaf will hear; the lame will walk; and the mentally impaired will have their minds healed. There will no longer be any pain or death.

That should make someone happy. That should produce some sort of hope in you this morning.

• God will lay hold of that which has held on to you.

Have you been harassed by the enemy?
Do you feel like he always has the upper hand and that you cannot defeat him?

I have good news for you today, Christ Jesus will lay a hold of that very thing that has laid a hold on you and your family.  He will shut him up, and set a seal upon him. What Christ shuts none can open; He shuts by his power, seals by his authority; and his lock and seal even the devils themselves cannot break open.

There is coming a time in which the enemy will be powerless over your life.

Next time the enemy reminds you of your past, you remind him of his future!

Hope is produced by endurance through suffering

By contrast, those who do not place their trust in God are said to be without hope.

If You know Jesus as your Savior, you are an heir to some incredible promises, and if you know those promises and believe in them, you can live in the midst of this evil world with hope, joy, and great expectations.