Summary: Christians hope is not bound TO this world but makes all the difference for life IN this world.

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Sermon Objective: Christians hope is not bound TO this world but makes all the difference for life IN this world.


Then I heard a voice from heaven say, “Write: Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord from now on.” “Yes,” says the Spirit, “they will rest from their labor, for their deeds will follow them.” (Rev. 14:13)

Dr. W. A Criswell, Pastor of the First Baptist Church of Dallas Texas, said on one occasion on an airplane flight he found himself seated beside a well-known theologian. He desperately wanted to start a conversation and they did get to talk. The man told Dr. Criswell about how he had recently lost his little boy through death. Dr. Criswell listened as he told his story:

He said he had come home from school with a fever and we thought it was just one of those childhood things, but it was a very virulent form of meningitis. The doctor said we cannot save your little boy. He'll die.

And so this seminary professor, loving his son as he did, sat by the bedside to watch this death vigil. It was the middle of the day, and the little boy whose strength was going from him and whose vision and brain was getting clouded said, "Daddy, it's getting dark isn't it?" The professor said to his son, "Yes son it is getting dark, very dark." Of course it was very dark for him. He said, "Daddy, I guess it's time for me to go to sleep isn't it?"

He said, "Yes, son, it's time for you to go to sleep."

The professor said the little fellow had a way of fixing his pillow just so, and putting his head on his hands when he slept and he fixed his pillow like that and laid his head on his hands and said, "Good night Daddy. I will see you in the morning." He then closed his eyes in death and stepped over into heaven.

Dr. Criswell said the professor didn't say anymore after that. He just looked out the window of that airplane for a long time. Then he turned back and he looked at Dr. Criswell with the scalding tears coming down his cheeks and he said, "Dr. Criswell, I can hardly wait till the morning."

(“Can't Wait Until Morning” as told by Rev. Steve Gallimore)


Christian hope.

It stands in striking contrast to the despair of the world. It gives color to our world – even in the midst of grief. In 1 Thessalonians 4:13 Paul says, “But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope.”

In the past I have used the Book of the Revelation to explain and illustrate key Biblical concepts to you. Those include great doctrines like, Sovereignty, The Fear of the Lord, The Holy Spirit, Christian Perseverance (faithfulness), the Resurrection, Atonement, Repentance, and Prayer. In some cases, the words themselves are never used in the book but the doctrines are present and even a guiding force for the author. An example is the word “sovereignty.” It is never used but to deny that sovereignty is not illustrated and essential to the book would be ridiculous.

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