Summary: We all need hope. Here I’m touching on how Hope is like a light. It should give us optimism, transform our lives, and reminds us of our inheritance.
THE LIGHT OF HOPE
1. You always need to be skeptical when you are offered a “free ride.” If it looks too good to be true, it probably IS too good to be true. Example:
2. In Zimbabwe, a bus driver was transporting 20 mental patients from one mental hospital to another.
3. He saw an illegal bar on the side of the road and decided to stop for a few drinks. He locked his patients in the bus. After about an hour, he returned to find all the mental patients had escaped.
4. Not wanting to admit his incompetence, the driver went to a nearby bus stop and offered everyone there a free ride.
5. He then delivered the passengers to the mental hospital, telling the staff that the patients were very excitable and prone to bizarre fantasies. The deception wasn’t discovered for 3 days.
B. THESIS: WHAT IS HOPE LIKE?
1. The coming of Hope is like lighting a candle in the darkness.
2. “Other men see only a hopeless end, but the Christian rejoices in [sees] an endless hope.” George Beenken.
3. “What oxygen is to the lungs, such is hope [is] for the [soul] meaning of life.” Emil Brunner.
4. Today’s headline of the Houston Chronicle (reflecting on the 5 policemen killed in Dallas) was “A Nation Holding Onto Hope.”
5. We all need hope. Tonight I’m touching on how Hope is like a light. It should give us optimism, transform our lives, and reminds us of our inheritance.
I. HOPE IS A POSITION OF OPTIMISM
Optimism is defined as “hopefulness and confidence about the future or the successful outcome of something.” In other words, it’s a positive outlook based on the conviction that things are going to get better! We Christians have every reason for optimism. Why?
A. GOD IS A GOOD GOD
1. “The Lord, the Lord, the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness, maintaining love to thousands, and forgiving wickedness, rebellion and sin.” Ex. 34:6.
2. The God of the Bible is motivated by love in all He does. He wants to save and bless all humans with eternal life.
3. He is not motivated, as Allah, to uphold his greatness at all costs, but voluntarily humbles Himself to subject Himself to mocking and torture by His creatures in order to save them. His over-riding motive is His LOVE. Praise God!
B. GOD IS WORKING FOR OUR GOOD
1. “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose” Rom. 8:28.
2. God is NOT working for HIS own good, but for OUR good! What an amazing statement. If God be for us, who can be against us? If we are mistreated in this life, still God will turn it around in the next life.
3. The beggars in this life, the under-privileged, the hungry, the sad, the persecuted, the disadvantaged – all will be reversed in eternity. They will not be the tail, but the head in God’s order. [See the “Beatitudes,” Mt. 25:35-43, Luke 16:19-26]
C. HE IS IN CONTROL