The Ingredients Of Hope
By two unchangeable things in which it is impossible for God to lie, we who have taken refuge would have strong encouragement to take hold of the hope set before us.
What can we hold on to when we are going through a storm in life? In Hebrews 6:17-18, the writer showed us the ingredients of hope: “God, desiring even more to show to the heirs of the promise the unchangeableness of His purpose, interposed with an oath, so that by two unchangeable things in which it is impossible for God to lie, we who have taken refuge would have strong encouragement to take hold of the hope set before us.” God’s promise and God’s oath–these are the two unchangeable things in which our hope rests. Let’s look at each of them.
Consider God’s promise. What gives us hope? It is the fact that God has said it, and what God says, He will fulfill. Some Christians today say, “Just envision what it is you want in life. Do you want a bigger house? Do you want healing? Name whatever you want, and claim it in the name of Jesus.” But before you claim it, you better be sure God has named it. God has not named for any of us exemption from problems in life. But here are three things God has promised for us.
Promise number one: God will not allow anything to happen to you without a purpose. Nothing comes into your life that has not, first of all, been sifted through the perfect, good, loving will of God. Romans 8:28 says, “God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.” Everything that happens in your life is part of God’s plan to shape you into the image of Jesus Christ. That is not saying that everything that happens to you is good; it is saying that everything that happens–the good, the bad, the ugly–is all working together for God for a great purpose. Promise number two: God will never leave you or forsake you (Hebrews 13:5). You can name that promise and claim it. In Matthew 28:20, Jesus said, “I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” And promise number three: God will redeem your soul when you die. To be absent from the body is to be at home with the Lord (2 Corinthians 5:8). We have hope because of the promise of God.
Now that should be sufficient, shouldn’t it? But God has given us something else: His oath. In Old Testament times, if somebody made a promise to another person, he would swear by a name greater than himself that he would fulfill what he promised to do. We do that today in court. You raise your right hand and say, “So help me God.” You are swearing by a name greater than yourself. The Bible says that when God made this promise to Abraham, He swore an oath by His own name. Did you know God has given you and me an oath for the promises He has made to us? That oath is a person, the Holy Spirit. Ephesians 1:14 says when we trusted in Christ we were sealed by the Holy Spirit, “who is given as a pledge of our inheritance.” The writer of Hebrews called this oath “a strong encouragement” (6:18). Our hope is in God’s promise that never changes and in His oath that He will fulfill.
Today’s devotion is excerpted from “God’s Anchor In Life’s Storms” by Dr. Robert Jeffress, 2018.
Scripture taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1960,1962,1963,1968,1971,1972,1973,1975,1977,1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission.