3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 4 to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you, 5 who by God’s power are being guarded through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. 1 Peter 1:3-5.
Pastor Chris assured us all that we have permanent hope through the resurrection of Jesus. How we react to that truth determines our hope experience. Central to this Easter message of God’s hope for us is the first few verses in chapter 1 of the book of 1st Peter. Only because of God’s mercy can we be redeemed and have the hope-filled assurance that we will inherit eternal life with Him.
Chris points out an essential truth for all people, “Hope has everything to do with our response to what Jesus did for us.” If we take Him at His word, we have hope. If we merely wonder whether he died and rose for us, we will be hopeless (1 Cor. 15:17). Those who are lost look to what they can do or experience in their quest for hope. Believing that the future is in their own hands people become hopeless because they sense that there is no guarantee. Disaster and disappointment shake their sense of security – in finances, health, relationships, identity, and more. Jesus offers a guarantee, the hope of today and eternity!
Jesus asked Martha in John 11:25 the same question he personally asks everyone, “25 Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life.[d] Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, 26 and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die. Do you believe this?”” Since Jesus is alive, hope is alive!
There are 3 Aspects of Jesus’ Resurrection that We can Count On
- A Living Hope – 1 Peter 1:3, “…born again to a living hope…”
- A Lasting Hope – 1 Peter 1:4, “…an inheritance imperishable…kept in heaven for you.”
- A Loving Hope – 1 Peter 1:5, “…by God’s power being guarded through faith…”
Chris asked the question of us, “Do you know that you will spend the rest of your life, and eternity, with the Father?” The fact that Jesus rose from the dead and is alive now, means those who believe in him have this assurance. We can celebrate a hope that is solid. Like a diamond with flawless clarity, it’s crystal clear, no imperfections, and enduring – the best kind of hope is one that does not fade. True hope is secured in God. Regardless of the circumstances in life, our response can be a confident hope in a relationship with God forever. Christ has died, risen and He is coming again!
19 We have this as a sure and steadfast anchor of the soul, a hope that enters into the inner place behind the curtain, where Jesus has gone as a forerunner on our behalf…” Hebrews 6:19
“There are no hopeless situations, there are only people who have grown hopeless about them.” – Clare Booth Luce
- In what do you find hope for today, tomorrow and forever?
- In what do most people in the world find hope?
- What’s your reaction to the statement, “How you respond to resurrection of Jesus determines whether you have hope or hopelessness.”
- Why do you suppose it was important to Peter to declare, “in his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a living hope…?” How might you define a “living hope” as different from just hope?
- Would you describe your hope like a diamond – strong, flawless, valuable?
- Have you answered the question that Jesus asked Martha in John 11:25, “…everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die. Do you believe this?”
- Reaffirm your belief in Jesus. Declare through prayer that you have a living, lasting and loving hope! Consider sharing this with someone near to you who has no hope.