Summary: I am so thankful to God that I do not have hope in this life only. For if we do, the Apostle Paul states in 1 Corin 15 verses 17-19 that we are men that are most miserable.
A-Z of Boldness
Bold in our HOPE
Over the past several weeks we have been looking at the A-Z of Boldness. Please remember being Bold does not mean being obnoxious or rude & crude. To be Bols simply means to be courageous. This Boldness or courage we have should not be of the flesh or of self pride but courage brought out by God's Holy Spirit empowering you. The last two weeks we have looked at being Bold with our Finances. Being Courageous with our finances means trusting God to provide. It means giving back more than the tithe. And it is a way of showing our Thanks unto the Lord. Last week we discusseed how we as christians should be Bold concerning the Goverment. Paul exhorted Timothy and us to Pray for kings and those in authourity over us. Paul also wrote to the church at Rome and told them that God has ordained all those in power over us, because there is no authourity but that of God. He told the roman citizens that they should participate in goverment by paying their tributes or taxes. We also noted that participating meant preaching to the goverment concerning right and wrong just as many did in Biblical times. Another way of participating is to vote.
this week we will consider the letter H. Being Bold in our HOPE.
Our scripture this morning is one of my favorites. It is 1 Thessalonians 4 verses 13-18. "13 But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope. 14 For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him. 15 For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. 16 For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: 17 Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. 18 Wherefore comfort one another with these words."
This scripture excites me! I love to read and hear the words of this passage. Why because it contains HOPE. Hope for us concerning the dead. Hope for the dead. And Hope for the living! The hope of all people and every nation and every generation is tied up in one name. A name above every name. A name that to every knee shall bow and every toungue confess. That name Jesus!
One night at dinner a man, who had spent many summers in Maine, fascinated his companions by telling of his experiences in a little town named Flagstaff. The town was to be flooded, as part of a large lake for which a dam was being built. In the months before it was to be flooded, all improvements and repairs in the whole town were stopped. What was the use of painting a house if it were to be covered with water in six months? Why repair anything when the whole village was to be wiped out? So, week by week, the whole town became more and more bedraggled, more gone to seed, more woebegone. Then he added by way of explanation: "Where there is no hope for the future, there is no power in the present."
I am so thankful to God that I do not have hope in this life only. For if we do, the Apostle Paul states in 1 Corin 15 verses 17-19 that we are men that are most miserable. "17 And if Christ be not raised, your faith is vain; ye are yet in your sins. 18 Then they also which are fallen asleep in Christ are perished. 19 If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable."
But God gives His children a hope and a joy that is unspeakable and full of glory. God has taken the misery of our lives and placed it on Christ as He hung on the cross. Now, we are reconciled with God in Christ. We have nothing to be miserable about.
As the Apostle Paul writes to the church of Thessalonica, Paul understands that some are concerned that Christ had not appeared as was promised. Time has passed, and some in their midst had died. Had the return of Christ already occured? Was there no longer hope that they would see their loved ones again? There was great trepidation amongst the church at this time.