Circumstances, a physical diagnosis, news reports, a bank statement or investment report, or a letter or phone call, can produce fear, dread, even despair in our hearts!
My Bible reading today emphasized the antidote … HOPE! Not the popular definition of the word, however – wishful thinking – as in “I hope something good will happen, but I’m not sure that it will!” But “HOPE” by the Biblical use of the term… “Confident expectation in the promises and faithfulness of Almighty God!” (And their there is vast difference between the two usages of the term!)
Here’s what I read in the Bible this morning…
“Whatever was written in former days (i.e. in the Bible!) was written for our instruction, that through endurance and through the encouragement of the Scriptures WE MIGHT HAVE HOPE! … May THE GOD OF HOPE fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit YOU MAY ABOUND IN HOPE!” (From Romans 15: 4 & 13 ESV)
Here’s the little outline I jotted in the margin of my Bible this morning…
- Its clear statement… The promises of God in the Bible
- Its ultimate source – God Himself!
- Its results or outcome – Joy and peace as we believe what God has said
- Its dynamic – The power of the Holy Spirit at work in our lives
- Its abundance – We can “abound in hope!”
Hey, we can overcome fear, dread, despondency and despair through God-given – Holy Spirit produced HOPE! I think I’d like to preach that outline somewhere – and share it with some struggling person today!