Last week was a tough week for me. Dealing with the issues of life was trying enough, but knowing what our present government has become in light of the Benghazi hearings it is enough to think of our nation as hopeless. If I were to look horizontally, that is all around me, for signs of hope I would have good reason to think of things as hopeless. But while I am living in this world, I am not of it because I am a child of the one true King as the Matthew West song proclaims.
The early church in Thessalonica felt this same despair in worrying of whether or not they had missed Jesusâ€™ second coming. The Apostle Paul assure this church they had not and that no matter what they were facing, or whatever we are facing, the church is to stand fast in the truth of the gospel. That seems easier said then done when we are hard pressed on all sides but Paul gives us the key ingredients to rock solid faith:
â€œNow may our Lord Jesus Christ Himself, and our God and Father, who has loved us and given us everlasting consolation and good hope by grace, comfort your hearts and establish you in every good word and work.â€ (2 Thessalonians 2:16-17)
I know so many Christians who have given up on being salt and light to a dark and decaying world, and I confess to having to battle these urges, but we are never defeated no matter our circumstances:
â€œWe are hard-pressed on every side, yet not crushed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyedâ€”always carrying about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our body.â€ ( 2 Corinthians 4:8-10)
The hope we have in this world and in eternity is solely found in the Person of Jesus Christ. As Paul told the Thessalonians, it is a good hope by grace, that being the grace of God through the Lord Jesus Christ. We have a faith grounded in hope by grace because of the work of our Savior on the cross at Calvary. We who are born again are to never give up hope, but always believe that Christ will make all things new in our lives and eventually in the universe. He has reconciled us to the Father:
â€œFor it pleased the Father that in Him all the fullness should dwell, and by Him to reconcile all things to Himself, by Him, whether things on earth or things in heaven, having made peace through the blood of His cross. And you, who once were alienated and enemies in your mind by wicked works, yet now He has reconciled in the body of His flesh through death, to present you holy, and blameless, and above reproach in His sightâ€”if indeed you continue in the faith, grounded and steadfast, and are not moved away from the hope of the gospel which you heard, which was preached to every creature under heaven, of which I, Paul, became a minister.â€ (Colossians 1:19-23)
We have been reconciled to God through the blood of His precious Son. We stand holy, blameless, and above reproach in the sight of the Heavenly Father. Let us then â€œcontinue in the faith, grounded and steadfast,â€ never being â€œmoved away from the hope of the gospel.â€
That is my charge to each of us. Let us continue in the good hope by grace that our Lord Jesus Christ abundantly provides. We can continue in such a manner if we will just surrender our lives to Him. I hope you have already done so, but if not I am praying that this will be the week you do. Either way, if we will all look to the Author and Finisher of our faith we will indeed be victorious in this life.
And who knows, you just might have a better week…
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Copyright Â© 2013 David Jeffers