Summary: There are those today without hope, while others have false hope. Is there a True Hope that we can depend on?
“No Hope; False Hope; True Hope”
Dr. Steven G. Cook
A. Although Faith & Hope are closely linked together, but they should be clearly distinguished.
B. Faith has work to perform today; Hope cheers faith along the way and points to rewards of service.
C. Faith comes by hearing the Word of God (Rom. 10:17); Hope comes by experience (Rom. 5:4).
D. Faith accepts the gift of promise; Hope confidently expects the fulfillment of promise.
E. The Word of God says much about HOPE, but never does it use the term to mean uncertainty or doubt.
F. It is wrong to use the Scriptural term of to say, “I hope I am a Christian” as much as it would be for me to say, “I hope I am an American.”
G. I do not hope to be something that I KNOW I already am!
H. Let us examine three classes in the world today in respect to their relations to HOPE.
I. There are those who have No Hope; those who have False Hope; and those who have True Hope.
II. NO HOPE (Eph. 2:11-12)
A. According to God’s Word, there are those today who are described as having NO HOPE – and without God in the world.
B. While you may think that there are many who have No Hope, I disagree.
C. Hope is as essential to the human soul as Faith is to society.
D. A life without hope becomes an unendurable misery, a burden too grievous to be borne.
E. God Himself recognized the necessity of HOPE for the human soul – In Genesis 3, after Adam and Eve had sinned, they were without HOPE.
F. God condescended to the need of man and gave Adam HOPE – Gen. 3:15
G. In Ephesians 2:11-12, Paul discussed those who had No Hope – being without God in the world.
H. Ever since the origin of man, man has put his HOPE in either one or more gods.
I. However, we must admit that there are still those who are distraught – “Without HOPE and without God in the world.”
J. Sadly, one of the major causes of death among teenagers is still SUICIDE!
K. Just today, my wife told me about a mother whose 16 year old daughter committed suicide; One of my former students committed suicide in the 8th grade.
L. What a terrible thing for young and old alike to be without HOPE!
III. FALSE HOPE (Matt. 7:21-27)
A. Sadly, those who have False Hope are more numerous and worse off than those having No Hope.
B. They are not found only in the dark corners of Africa or the deepest jungles of South America.
C. Many who have False Hope can be found right in our own communities.
D. False Hope is far worse than No Hope at all!
E. A man who finds himself hopeless may be inclined to accept True Hope, but one who has a False Hope must admit his hope was vain before he will accept another.
F. False Hope seems to be self-sufficient – UNTIL times of testing come!
G. Many men and women have found that their hope was mere vanity when troubles arise.
H. Those who have False Hope not built upon a firm foundation, are like the “foolish man who built his house upon the sand!”
I. The drunkard who thinks that he can quit any time he likes has False Hope.
J. The dope addict who thinks that he can escape his problems by getting high has False Hope.
K. The thief who thinks he can steal without consequence has False Hope.
L. The church member who thinks that baptism, membership, or deeds is all that is necessary to escape hell has False Hope.
M. The rebellious child who disobeys his or her parents and thinks that he/she has gotten away with their actions has False Hope.
N. The husband or wife who is unfaithful, yet thinks they are clever enough to get away with their actions has False Hope.
O. There are also those who believe in religions without Christ – they have False Hope.
P. In God’s Word, Eli’s sons were evil, but thought that since they were born into a prominent family, they could get away with their actions - False Hope.
Q. Even wisdom that is not founded upon the fear of God is vanity and vexation of spirit – Eccl. 1:18
R. There are those who believe in a 2nd chance beyond our present life – They believe that repentance can be made after one dies - False Hope.
S. There are those who believe that IF they marry an infidel, they can lead them to Christ - False Hope.
T. Most women who marry unsaved men wind up failing in their own Christian lives.