Archive for the ‘Hope’ Category

LIGHT AND DARKNESS

Saturday, December 4th, 2010

Day 264

“I turned around to see the voice that was speaking to me. And when I turned I saw seven golden lampstands, and among the lampstands was someone like a son of man”
Revelation 1:12-13

You may never have considered this before; we still live in a dark age. We are surrounded by darkness. One only has to listen to the news to be aware of the darkness and it seems to be increasing. With the advent of literacy and education, we have entered an age of nihilism. Humanity believes it has escaped the ‘dark age’ because it is now educated and has knowledge.

When God chose to reveal Himself He sent His Son to become man. Light came to the earth for the first time since the fall. Jesus revealed the Father and His divine plan. He bore witness to the Light and was the Light. John says, “The light shines in the darkness, but the darkness has not understood it” (John 1:5). When Jesus completed His mission, He ascended into heaven and the earth continued in darkness.

With Christ’s ascension, He made provision for the Light to be here on the earth. The seven golden lampstands is the church and His children are the light in the world. In the midst of the church stands the resurrected Christ. We bear the light, testimony, and the message of reconciliation to those still in darkness. There is hope.

“To Him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by His blood, and has made us to be a kingdom and priests
to serve His God and Father – to Him be glory
and power for ever and ever! Amen.”
Revelation 1:5b-6

WHERE IS CHRIST?

Friday, November 5th, 2010

Day 242

“Christ in you, the hope of glory”
Colossians 1:27

Where is Christ?

Christ is our hope of receiving and participating in glory. The gospel is not a system, tradition, or set of regulations. It is the very Person and work of Jesus. We are admonished, taught by the Apostles, in coming to Christ to change our attitudes and actions and be conformed to His life. The purpose is to present us perfect in Christ.

Where is Christ?

Christ, seated at the right of God in all His glorious riches, dwells in our hearts and life through the Holy Spirit [John 14:20; 17:23; Galatians 2:20; Ephesians 3:17-19; 1 John 3:24]. He has given us everything we need for life and godliness [2 Peter 1:3]. The Holy Spirit is the seal of our inheritance.

Where is Christ?

Sadly, many have not understood the riches of the indwelling Christ and the greatness and power of that life that dwells with us. They seek Him at places where they hear signs and wonders are happening, in stadium meetings that promise a hope they already have, and in books that promise to show the way. All the while, the full power and glory of Christ dwells in them—waiting. How grieved He must be for those who look elsewhere when they possess all and know it not. Consider today the prayer of Paul:

“I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which He has called you, the riches of His glorious inheritance in the saints, and His incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is like the working of His mighty strength, which He exerted in Christ when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in heavenly realms”
Ephesians 1:18-23

HIS NAME

Monday, August 2nd, 2010

Day 151

“You are to name Him Jesus,
for He will save His people from their sins”
Matthew 1:21

In Jesus’ time names were very important and had meaning. It is true that many may not have thought much about Jesus’ name then and even this day many do not attribute any significance to His name. Even worse, among those who know Jesus and profess faith in Him, there is a lack of knowing the depth of who Jesus is. Do we understand that He offers salvation and that salvation is complete – to the uttermost, completely and thoroughly?

His salvation is to His people, those He said He has chosen [John 15:16]. He brought us emancipation, a release from oppression, delivering us from our chief enemy that had us in death. He emancipated us from the power, guilt, and punishment of sin. He brought us true liberty and freedom. His name represents that very salvation that set us free and all who are set free by Him bear His name as His saved people.

His salvation has saved us from sin and brought us into the kingdom of God where we are now His children and partakers of His nature. The act of salvation has long lasting effects on our lives and the forgiveness of sins not only erases the past, but keeps us in the present and is there for the future. It sets us free to live this day for the Lord.

It is the name of Jesus and all of who He is that saves us.

“He will be called Wonderful Counselor,
Mighty God, Everlasting Father,
Prince of Peace”
Isaiah 9:6

HIS FAITHFULNESS

Thursday, May 13th, 2010

Day 85

“You are those who have stood by Me in My trials”
Luke 22:28

God is a faithful God. He chose us before the foundation of the world; He created us to know, love, serve and have fellowship with Him. Fellowship was broken by the sin of the very first man that led to all of us being born separated from Him. God selected one person to begin a race of people to be His but; they continued man’s sinful ways. He then rescued them from 400-year captivity. They rebelled after being set free so He brought the next generation to a new land, where they rejected God as King and ended up in captivity again for 70 years. Then He set them free. Finally, in a time appointed He sent His own Son to die on a cross; opened the kingdom of God to all whosoever will answer His call.

Today we are His children because God never gave up on us. His faithfulness is steadfast, and we are proof of that. Even today, when we fail, fall, or slip, He is there. Should we even resist Him, He remains the same – near to us as a faithful companion. That faithfulness is a deep love for His children. It is a Father’s love. It is a love that has determined that not one of His children will be snatched out of His hand.

We again get a glimpse at the Father’s heart. Jesus told the disciples that in spite of their weaknesses and failures, they have stood with Him faithfully. Hundreds left Him, but they were loyal. They understood friendship. So He promised to give them a kingdom just as the Father had given Him one. Hear this, saints: the Lord values those who stay with Him. It reflects faithfulness, and He rewards us with the kingdom.

“And I confer on you a kingdom”
verse 29

HE DRAWS NEAR

Sunday, May 2nd, 2010

Day 74

“The waters closed over my head, and I
cried out, ‘This is the end'”
Lamentations 3:54-57

Have you ever been gripped in fear? Most of us have at one time or another. Fear has the capacity to paralyze us, seeming to grow in strength; overwhelming and reducing us to nothing. It causes us to lose all sense of control. Jeremiah cried, “…the waters closed over my head,” sensing the end of everything.

Fear also brings despair, and leads us to give up hope. Forces outside of us may bring this on, or it can be of our doing. But, Jeremiah called out of the depths of fear and despair because He understood something – the power of his God. So he called on God’s Name. When all else was gone, He knew the one sure thing in life was His God. And God heard him.

The difference between children of God and children of the world lies in the hope we hold. It transcends all causes for fear. It is this hope that has brought strength to those being persecuted for their faith. It is this hope that saves. It is this hope that keeps us even if we lose everything. It is this hope that knows He is right there and hears us. It is this hope that causes Him to draw near, and whisper in our ears, “Do not fear.”

“Fear not, for I am with you. Do not be dismayed. I am
your God. I will strengthen you; I will help you;
I will uphold you with my victorious
right hand of righteousness”
Isaiah 41:10