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Summary: The benediction of hope (PowerPoint slides to accompany this talk are available on request - email: gcurley@gcurley.info)

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Reading: Romans chapter 15 verse 13.

Quote: Charles Swindoll:

• Hope is a wonderful gift from God,

• A source of strength and courage in the face of life’s harshest trials.

• When we are trapped in a tunnel of misery, hope points to the light at the end.

• When we are overworked and exhausted, hope gives us fresh energy.

• When we are discouraged, hope lifts our spirits.

• When we are tempted to quit, hope keeps us going.

• When we lose our way and confusion blurs the destination,

• Hope dulls the edge of panic.

• When we struggle with a crippling disease or a lingering illness,

• Hope helps us persevere beyond the pain.

• When we fear the worst, hope brings reminders that God is still in control.

• When we must endure the consequences of bad decisions, hope fuels our recovery.

• When we find ourselves unemployed, hope tells us we still have a future.

• When we are forced to sit back and wait, hope gives us the patience to trust.

• When we feel rejected and abandoned,

• Hope reminds us we’re not alone ... we’ll make it.

• When we say our final farewell to someone we love,

• Hope in the life beyond gets us through our grief.

• Put simply, when life hurts and dreams fade,

• Nothing helps like hope.

• According to the Apostle Paul in 1 Corinthians chapter 13 verse 13;

• There are the three abiding virtues (qualities), they are: “Faith, hope and love”;

Quote: Warren Wiersbe:

• FAITH compels us to LOOK UP;

• And have confidence in the true and living God.

• LOVE constrains us to LOOK AROUND;

• And encourage those who need our help;

• And HOPE motivates us to LOOK AHEAD;

• With assurance, knowing that the future is our friend because Jesus is our living Lord.

Ill:

"HOPE" has been called the "Cinderella" of this great threesome:

• Question: Why?

• Answer: Because it is the one always left out! The one never taken to the ball!

• We hear a lot of messages on Faith, and a lot of messages on Love,

• But rarely do we hear a message specifically on HOPE.

Now our benediction and the surrounding verses:

• Are about Christian hope.

• And therefore it is a great benediction of encouragement.

(1). The SIGHT of this Hope (vs 12b)

• Note: At the end of verse 12,

• Paul quotes from the prophet Isaiah and says: "The Gentiles will hope in HIM."

The context of these verses is the Apostle Paul talking about God’s great plan of salvation.

• The apostle Paul describes a great choir of both Jews and Gentiles;

• Praising the Lord with one mouth.

Note: He does this by quoting four passages from the Old Testament:

(1).

• Each quote is very significant;

• And Paul uses them to show a beautiful progressive truth:

• Verse 9 Paul quotes Psalm 18 verse 49.

• To show the Jews glorifying God among the Gentiles.

• Romans chapter 1 verse 16 reminds us that;

• Salvation came “First to the Jew”

(2).

• Verse 10 Paul quotes Deuteronomy chapter 34 verse 43.

• To show the Gentiles rejoicing with the Jews.

• Don’t read that statement too quickly;

• Because it wasn’t always that way!

• Paul says in Ephesians chapter 2 verse 12 that the Gentiles were “Without hope”


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