Date written: December 2nd, 2006
Scripture ref: Hebrews 6:17-20
TITLE: The Importance of Hope
PROPOSITION: Hope is important because it gives us something 1) To Talk About, 2) To Work Toward, 3) To Hang Onto.
OBJECTIVE: That each would understand the importance of hope in the life of the Christian.
1. Read: Hebrews 6:17-20
2. About the Text:
1) The book of Hebrews was written to encourage Christians to remain faithful to Christ.
2) Chapter 6 records that some had already fallen away.
3) The writer, however, was persuaded of better things regarding his listeners (Hebrews 6:9).
4) So he gives them a word of encouragement by reminding to “shew the same diligence to the full assurance of hope unto the end” (Hebrews 6:11).
5) He then reminds us that our hope is anchored in heaven where Christ has entered to sit on the right hand of the throne of God.
6) Hope is very imporant.
7) Why do we need hope?
3. Ref. to S, T, P, O, and A.
DISCUSSION: We need hope because it gives us something . . .
I. To Talk About
1. People love to talk about their plans.
1) Young people talk about their plans for college, home, and jobs.
2) Working people talk about their vacation plans.
3) Older people talk about their retirement plans.
2. It's just natural that Christians would talk about their plans to be in heaven.
1) Jesus spoke of such plans to the disciples. John 14:1-3 “Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.”
2) Paul spoke about his desire to depart and be with Christ (Philippians 1:23).
3) Peter spoke about his hope for the resurrection (1 Peter 1:3, 21).
4) Consider Paul's words of encouragement and hope to the church at Thessalonica who were bereaving their Christian brethren who had departed this life.
5) Read 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18.
3. Hope gives us something to talk about, sing about, pray about, and rejoice over.
II. To Work Toward
1. Hope also motives us to work.
1) Consider the expectant father who knows the baby is on the way.
2) Consider the young person seeking to pay for his school loans or tuition.
3) Consider the working man looking forward to his vacation.
4) Hope motivates us to work.
2. Hope motivates Christians to work.
1) We may have hopes for our future work here.
2) When we take a mission trip we elevate our hopes.
3) When we plan the work for the congregation, we elevate our hopes.
4) Paul often spoke of his future work as well.
5) He told the church at Rome, “When therefore I have performed this, and have sealed to them this fruit, I will come by you into Spain” (Romans 15:28).
6) He told Timothy “These things write I unto thee, hoping to come unto thee shortly” (1 Timothy 3:14).
7) John said, “but I hope shortly to see thee, and we shall speak face to face” (3 John 14).
3. Hope for eternal life should motivate us the most.
1) Our hope motivates us to serve the Lord. Paul described himself as a servant, “in hope of eternal life, which God, who cannot lie, promised before times eternal” (Titus 1:1-2).
2) Our hope motivates us to be sober. Peter said, “Wherefore girding up the loins of your mind, be sober and set your hope perfectly on the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ” (1 Peter 1:13).
3) Our hope motivates us to live pure and godly lives. John wrote, “Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is. And every man that hath this hope in him purifieth himself, even as he is pure.” (1 John 3:2-3).
III. To Hang Onto
1. If we have hope, we can get through the most difficult things.
1) The proverbial light at the end of the tunnel.
2) We can do daily chores that need to be done because of our hope for some future event.
3) We can raise our children in the hope that they have a good life.
4) We can work through difficult times in marriage, if we have hope for better days ahead.
2. For Christians, hope provides us a way to deal with life's problems.
1) Paul wrote, “And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience; And patience, experience; and experience, hope: And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us.” (Romans 5:3-5).
2) Paul knew personally about those persecutions. He said, “For this cause therefore have I called for you, to see you, and to speak with you: because that for the hope of Israel I am bound with this chain.” (Acts 28:20).
3. When we have hope, we can endure almost anything.
4. Story: Wouldn't send a teacher to work on nouns and adverbs with a dying boy.
1. Why do we need hope? We need hope because it gives us something . . .
1) To Talk About
2) To Work Toward
3) To Hang Onto
"Hope" is the thing with feathers
That perches in the soul
And sings the tune without the words
And never stops at all,
And sweetest in the gale is heard;
And sore must be the storm
That could abash the little bird
That kept so many warm.
I've heard it in the chillest land
And on the strangest sea,
Yet never, in extremity,
It asked a crumb of me.