“So now faith, hope, and love abide, these three; but the greatest of these is love.” 1 Corinthians 13:13
Last week, Joshua talked to us about how love is so deeply entwined in our lives as Christians and how God Himself is the very epitome of love. This week, I would like to take a look at one of the other aspects in 1 Corinthians 13:13, hope.
I recently read a short story about an experiment scientists were doing with some lab rats. The scientists took some lab rats and placed them in a tub of water and left them there for only a short while. After the brief amount of time, the scientists came back to find that the lab rats had stopped swimming shortly after they had been placed in the small container and drowned. The second set of lab rats were put under the same conditions except that whenever they had given up trying to swim, the scientists would lift them out of the water for a short amount of time. After a few occurrences of this, the rats would begin to swim for longer amounts of time between the time they were picked up and placed back in the water. Eventually, they swam for over a period of twenty-four hours. -Paraphrased from Today in the Word, May, 1990, MBI, p. 34
It’s quite amazing to see the difference it makes, having no hope and having it, that is. In fact, though used on rats, it is possible to expand this experiment and its results to the entire world.
Let us think for a moment why God is important. Without Him, this world would, quite literally, be hopeless. I’m not just speaking what I believe, but also in a very scientific sense, speaking the truth.
In William Lane Craig’s book On Guard, he tells of what eventually will become of humanity, the Earth and all of the universe, without such a hope in Christ. However many years from now, be it hundreds of thousands or possibly millions, the Earth will either grow too cold or too hot to maintain human life. Not considering all the other thousands of possibilities that could arise during that time to end life on Earth, most scientists will agree that in time, humanity will no longer exist.
Since this is the case, what hope do we have in humanity? What hope do we have that our name will live on forever? The universe in all of its majesty and vastness cannot and will not remember a single name of anyone in existence now or in the future. It’s an excruciating truth to overcome, really.
Now let us think on the hope that God brings us:
“For in hope we have been saved, but hope that is seen is not hope; for who hopes for what he already sees?” Romans 8:24
“For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him.” John 3:17
“and after he brought them out, he said, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?”” Acts 16:30
“that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved” Romans 10:9
“but Christ was faithful as a Son over His house—whose house we are, if we hold fast our confidence and the boast of our hope firm until the end.” Hebrews 3:6
With God in the equation, it is easy to see how such a hope can be so easily attained by us, the very people who sinned against God! He sent His Son, Jesus, to die for us so that we could have such a hope!
Finally, with this hope we can look towards eternity and shudder not! For it is written “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven will enter.” Matthew 7:21… We are looking onwards towards Heaven! What a great day it will be when all those who had such a hope in Christ will be together with Him in harmony! With Christ, the future is so much brighter than anyone in the world could ever imagine!
I encourage you, place all of your hope in the Lord, Jesus Christ.
“in this hope we have as an anchor of the soul” Hebrews 6:19