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Summary: What is the hope and joy set before us? How does this affect us now?

For The Hope And Joy Set Before Us

The Present Effects Of A Future Prospect

Introduction

A. As Christians, what is the one hope we have? There are actually several aspects of this hope:

1. Jesus’ second coming (John 14:1-3):

a. He shall descend from heaven (1 Thessalonians 4:16a), appearing in the clouds (Revelation 1:7), and will bring salvation to those who have been waiting for Him (Hebrews 9:28) .

b. His coming is announced by the archangel and with the trump of God (1 Thessalonians 4:16b).

2. The resurrection (John 5:25-29):

a. The dead in Christ shall rise first (1 Thessalonians 4:16c).

b. Then their and our bodies shall be transformed (1 Corinthians 15:40-44 > 51-53).

c. Then we shall all be caught up in the clouds to meet the Lord (1 Thessalonians 4:17).

3. Entering into heaven (John 17:24):

a. We shall enter into the everlasting kingdom (2 Peter 1:10-11).

b. We shall enter His rest (Hebrews 4:3-9).

c. We shall enter into the joy of the Lord (Matthew 25:21).

B. What will it be like in heaven?

1. No unclean thing shall be there (Ephesians 5:5; Revelation 21:8; 22:15).

2. There shall all burdens be ended (Revelation 21:1-5).

What are the present effects on us of this future prospect?

I. It Motivates Faithfulness (1 Corinthians 15:58)

A. It is in view of the hope and joy set before us that Paul exhorts us to be:

1. Steadfast - Paul has just set before them convincing assurances of the future resurrection. In view of these assurances they ought to remain faithful to the Lord, firm and unmoved within themselves in regard to the position they had taken, giving no room to doubts and wavering (Cp. Hebrews 10:23; James 1:6).

2. Unmoveable - The same assurances make us unmoveable or unshakeable from outside influences. Our assurance is so sure that none are able shake us from our convictions (Cp. 2 Timothy 2:16-18; 2 Thessalonians 2:2; 1 Timothy 1:19-20).

3. Always abounding in the work of the Lord:

a. The work - Spreading the gospel, helping the afflicted, and all that the Lord has prepared for us to do (Cp. Ephesians; 1 Timothy 6:17-18; Titus 2:14; 3:8, 14; Hebrews 13:21).

b. Abounding - We are to do as much as we can, even to excess (Cp. Colossians 2:7; 1 Thessalonians 4:1; 2 Thessalonians 1:3).

c. Always - Christians are never to slack but to always be engaged in the work of the Lord (Cp. Galatians 4:18; Colossians 4:12; 1 Peter 3:15).

B. It is because of our faithfulness that Jesus will welcome us into the joy of the Lord (Matthew 25:21).

II. It Causes Us To Purify Ourselves (1 John 3:1-3; 2 Peter 3:11, 14)

A. If we fail to purify ourselves, we shall not see God (Hebrews 12:14; Cp. Matthew 5:8).

B. Jesus is set before us as the model of purity (1 John 3:3; 1 Peter 1:16).

1. He had no sin within (1 John 3:5).

2. He was without sin (Hebrews 4:15).

3. He knew no sin (2 Corinthians 5:21).

4. He did no sin (1 Peter 2:22).

C. Having great and precious promises set before us, we are to cleanse ourselves of all filthiness (2 Corinthians 7:1):

1. Of the flesh - All outward sins: adultery, fornication, murders, drunkenness, revellings, etc. (See Galatians 5:19-21).

2. Of the mind - All inward sins: idolatry, lasciviousness, hatred, envyings, etc. (See Galatians 5:19-21).

III. It Enables Us To Endure Hardships (Hebrews 12:1-3)

A. God has not said we shall be free of hardships, in fact, there several warnings of such (1 Peter 4:1; 2 Timothy 3:12).

B. But as we, imitating Jesus, set our minds and hearts on the hope and joy that is set before us, we are able to endure all hardships (1 Peter 4:13; Luke 6:22-23).

Conclusion

A. We have now considered the hope and joy set before us.

1. Jesus’ second coming.

2. Our future resurrection.

3. Our entrance into heaven.

4. The eternal bliss of heaven.

B. It is this hope and joy that:

1. Motivates us to faithfulness.

2. Causes us to purify ourselves.

3. Enables us to endure hardships.

C. The Christian life is meant to be filled with joy:

1. If you are a Christian and you are not experiencing that joy then perhaps you need to study this subject more closely; for such is essential to remain faithful, pursue purity, and endure hardship.

2. If you are not a Christian then you are urged to come to Jesus and begin experiencing that joy today.

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