December 6, 2020
HOPE CHANGES EVERYTHING
The world in which we live is messy. Hopelessness abounds. And the further we stray from God, the more hopeless we become.
Job:8:11 (TLB) – “Those who forget God have no hope…”
WHAT HAPPENS WHEN A CULTURE FORGETS GOD? *
- Wealth is idolized
- Truth is minimized
- Life is trivialized
- Abortion is legalized
- Television is vulgarized
- Everything is sexualized and commercialized
- Our consciences become desensitized
- Education is secularized
- Races are polarized
- Morals and Ethics are liberalized
- Entertainment crime is sensationalized
- Immorality is popularized
- Drugs are legitimized
- Sin is glamorized
- The Courts are paralyzed
- The breakup of the family is rationalized
- Manners are uncivilized
- Christians are demonized and
- God is marginalized
* list compiled by Rick Warren
But there is a HOPE you can anchor your soul to. The promise is God’s…the person is Jesus…and this Hope CHANGES EVERYTHING!!!
HOPE is not optimism
- Hope is theological…optimism is psychological.
- Optimism is telling yourself things are going to be great even when they are not great.
- Optimism is convincing yourself your situation isn’t bad. Hope says “It’s bad…but I still believe”
Three Types of Hope:
- Wishful Hope – what most people mean when they use the word HOPE.
- Expectant Hope – there’s some basis in reality.
- Certain Hope – This is what the Bible says to anchor your life to.
- Hebrews 6:19 (NIV) – “We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure…”
- There is no doubt in certain hope. It is confident.
Hope keeps your soul alive.
“Hope is the life preserver of our soul when it seems all is lost.” – Charles Billingsley
Hope (Certain Hope) is not only a life preserver…it is AN ANCHOR for your soul.
Certain Hope is based on God’s word, not my wishes.
…not on what I sense, but what God has said.
…not on my emotion, but what God has spoken.
Titus 1:2 (The Message) – My aim is to raise hopes by pointing the way to life without end. This is the life God promised long ago—and he doesn’t break promises!
Certain Hope is based on the fact that God cannot lie. We can trust His promises!!!
Romans 15:13 (NLT) – I pray that God, the source of hope, will fill you completely with joy and peace because you trust in him. Then you will overflow with confident hope through the power of the Holy Spirit.
- God is both the Source and Supplier of HOPE.
- God is not just the Inspirer of Hope…He authors
- His supply is abundant.
Romans 5:2-5 (NASB)
“…we celebrate in HOPE of the glory of God. And not only this, but we also celebrate in our tribulations, knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance; and perseverance, proven character; and proven character, HOPE; and hope does not disappoint…”
Isaiah 43:2-3 (NLT)
“When you go through deep waters, I will be with you. When you go through rivers of difficulty, you will not drown. When you walk through the fire of oppression, you will not be burned up; the flames will not consume you. For I am the Lord, your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior.”
“Contending for what you believe in is harder than conceding to what you are afraid of.” – Mark Batterson
Jesus gave us the weapon against hopelessness in Luke 18:1 (NCV) – “Jesus taught his followers to always pray and never lose hope.”
10 Most Common Causes of Hopelessness…
and 10 Reasons for Hope (based on The Lord’s Prayer)
taken from THE HOPE YOU NEED by Rick Warren
- You feel alone or abandoned –
Remember – My loving Father will never abandon me.
“Our Father which art in Heaven…”
- Life seems out of control –
Remember – God’s power is greater than any problem.
“Hallowed be Your name…”
- You don’t see a purpose –
Remember – God fits everything into His plan.
“Thy kingdom come…”
- Grieving a loss –
Remember – God has a greater purpose.
“Thy will be done…”
- When you don’t have what you need –
Remember – God has promised to meet all our needs.
“Give us this day our daily bread…”
- You’ve done something wrong (guilt, shame, regret) –
Remember – Jesus died to pay for all I’ve done wrong.
“Forgive our trespasses…”
- Deeply wounded by someone (bitterness, resentment) –
Remember – God will settle the score someday.
“As we forgive those who trespass against us…”
- Temptation (constantly pulled in the wrong direction) –
Remember – God has promised to help me.
“Lead us not into temptation…”
- Hounded by fear (anxiety leads to hopelessness) –
Remember – Jesus in me is greater than any other power.
“Deliver us from evil…”
- When it looks like defeat –
Remember – This is NOT the end of the story.
“For Thine is the Kingdom and the Power and the Glory FOREVER.”