Summary: You may have hope but first things first
Life-Line For Jesus Community Church 4/14/02
Lorenzo Nicholson Sr. The Prerequisites Of Hope
Ps 131:1 LORD, my heart is not haughty, nor mine eyes lofty: neither do I exercise myself in great matters, or in things too high for me. 2 Surely I have behaved and quieted myself, as a child that is weaned of his mother: my soul is even as a weaned child. 3 Let Israel hope in the LORD from henceforth and for- ever.
There is a definition that I’d like to use for the word “hope.” Hope in its noun form is a wish or desire accompanied by confident expectation of its fulfill-ment. A wish or a desire without confident expectation is not hope. You may wish for something without confident expectation and never have your wish come true. So then confident expectation is very necessary in that it is the substance of things hoped for. If this is so, then it is safe to say that confident expectation is faith and it is the prerequisite of hope. “Faith is the substance of things hoped for, and the evidence of the thing not seen.”
I. It is imperative that you possess a spirit of humility. It is the opposite of pride, which is arrogant or disdainful disposition that springs from within the heart.
A. Ps 131:1a LORD, my heart is not haughty, nor mine eyes lofty:
1. If pride is seen in the outer person then it is evident that pride is within.
B. 131:1b “…neither do I exercise myself in great matters, or in things too high for me.”
1. David, here in verse one, uses several phrases to affirm that he had not been arrogant.
2. Pride is essentially independence from God and disobedient to him. David was saying that he depended on the Lord. It could be said like this:
a. I am a lost, wandering sheep, apart from God. I do not try to carry my own; I am dependent upon him.
b. When there are needs in my life, I do not exercise my-self to meet them on my own; God is my supplier.
c. I do not dare lean on my own understanding and his ways higher them mine. They are past finding out. Such knowledge is too high for me.
II. It is also imperative that you walk in obedience; it is a prerequisite of hope. Disobedience destroys confidence and dampens expectation. It stands in the way the fulfillment of hope and “hope deferred makes the heart sick.” Pro 13:12
A. David said in Psalm 131:2, “Surely I have behaved myself.” Have you compelled yourself to behave and obey the word of God?
B. Does temperance and self-control hold her ground in your life?
C. Have you kept under your body to bring it under subjection that you may live a life of holiness? All of these are the “prerequisites of hope.”
III. It is impossible to have a life filled with hope if God doesn’t give you reason to have hope. Hope is based upon the promise of God.
A. Ps 119:49 Remember the word unto thy servant, upon which thou hast caused me to hope.
B. David spoke this word to Israel, which is typical of the word spoken to us. Listen to the word to Israel in Psalm 131:3
1. V 3 Let Israel hope in the LORD from henceforth and forever.
a. This is equivalent to saying, “if you rid yourself of pride, walk in humility and obedience from now on, you now have “the prerequisites of hope,” confident expectation that the thing you wish or desire will be fulfilled.