Our Hope And Keeping
Because Christ is alive we have a certain hope for our present, future and eternity. Our faith is kept by the Word in our hearts and by the Holy Spirit living in us.
Alright, thank you very much. And hello radio friends. How in the world are you? Yes, this is your friend Bob Cook, and I’m back with you and the Word of God. We can spend some time together walking around in God’s garden of truth.
We’re in 1 Peter, just getting started on the first chapter. He said, “We’ve been born again onto a living hope” Verse 3, “by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.” He’s alive. And because he’s alive, we have hope. Now hope is different from wish — you remember I made that distinction? I wish someone would leave me a million dollars, but I don’t have much hope of that. Wish is desire, hope is expectation based on fact and persons.
So we have a living hope based on the fact that Jesus our Lord is alive from the dead. He rose again from the dead, and He’s what God calls, “the first fruits of them that slept.” In other words, our Lord Jesus alive from the dead is God’s proof of the resurrection of the believer. And so I mentioned to you that we have hope for success and blessing under the, the present conditions of stress in which we live. And we have hope for the immediate tomorrows.
I suppose the thing that bothers most of us is worry about what’s going to happen in the immediate tomorrows. What if I lose my job? What if I lose my health? What if my marriage breaks up? What if, what if, and what if… The tomorrows, the uncertainty of them. I get on an aeroplane. Is the thing going to fly? And if it flies, is it going to keep on flying? And what about the terrorists in the world? And could there be a bomb on the, on the plane, and all that? You could actually drive yourself wild with worry over concern about the immediate future.
But because you belong to the Lord Jesus Christ, He’s alive, and you are in His hands. And He is determining the course of your life. “Faithful is he that calleth you, who also will do it. God is faithful by whom you were called unto the fellowship of His son Jesus Christ our Lord. He which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ. No man is able to take them,” Jesus said, “out of My hand” as he spoke of believers — including you and me.
So there’s hope for the immediate tomorrows. You don’t have to worry about tomorrow. You can plan — the Bible is in favor of planning, you know that. You don’t have to drift through life. Life doesn’t have to take you by surprise. Many of our problems are caused by our own carelessness and procrastination, we all have to admit that. So you can plan and you can work, but you don’t have to worry because Jesus is alive. And He is in the pilot seat, hallelujah for that!
And then of course there’s hope for the eternal future. And so Paul says in Thessalonians 4, “So shall we ever be with the Lord.” And you read again now those sublime verses in the closing chapters of Revelation, where heaven and our relationship with our Lord in that blissful state, are described. And it says, “God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes. There’s no sickness and no pain, and no tears and no dying. But the lamb of God is the light.” God gives them light. They have neither light, “they have no need of the light of the sun,” it says, “for the Lord God giveth them light.”
And there’s the river of life, and the tree of life, and the presence of our blessed Lord of whom it is said in the Psalms, “In thy presence there is fullness of joy. At thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore.” So there’s hope for the eternal future as well. After the calendars have been tossed away, and the clocks have been stopped, and time shall be no more, and you and I are together with our Lord in that eternal presence which is eternity.”
And we are living in bodies adapted to that eternal ambiance. And you and I are enjoying the smile of our Savior even as we gaze on the wounds He still bears, which He received at Calvary. Jesus our Lord, with Him, for all eternity, hope because He’s alive. Born again unto a living hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.
Now, what’s the purpose of all that, the direction, the thrust of it shall we say? “Unto an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you who are kept by the power of God through faith and to salvation, ready to be revealed at the last day.”
“Unto an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled, and that fadeth not away…” What is the thrust of it? To give you an inheritance, to make you as Paul says in Romans 8, “Joint heir with Christ.” What is a joint heir? If you and I were joint heirs to $2, would you own the $2? Yes you would. But would I also own the $2? Yes I would as well. Could you spend the 2? Yes, but not without me. Could I spend the 2? Yes, but not without you. Joint heirs. Everything belongs to both, and we’re joint heirs with Christ. That’s why Paul can say in Corinthians, “All things are yours, and ye are Christ’s, and Christ is God’s.”
There’s nothing that the Lord Jesus has that doesn’t already belong to you, because you belong to Him. And inheritance. Oh the, the, the thrill of the blessing and the depth of that concept. “In Him,” Paul says in Ephesians 1, ‘we have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of Him who worketh all things after the counsel of His own will, that we should be to the praise of His glory, we who trusted in Christ.
What is this inheritance that God would make a poor, guilty, hell-deserving sinner something that would enhance His eternal glory. The inheritance of saints. “If children,” Paul says in Romans 8:17, “then heirs, heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ” — that’s what we were talking about a moment ago. And then he says in Galatians 3, “If ye be Christ’s, then are ye Abraham’s seed and heirs according to the promise. All the promises of God in Christ are ye and amen in Him.”
I heard someone singing the old chorus we had, and I hadn’t heard it for a long time. “Every promise in the Book is Mine. Every chapter, every verse, every line, all are tokens of His love divine. Every promise in the Book is Mine.” He says, “You’re heirs according to the promise.” And Paul says to Titus, “Being justified by grace, we are made heirs according to the hope of eternal life.” That inheritance as I said to you a moment ago, extends to eternal future. And the writer to the Hebrews says of angels, “Are they not all ministering spirits sent forth to minister for them who shall be heirs of salvation?” Heirs of promise in, in Hebrews 6:11, “God willing more abundantly to show unto the heirs of promise the immutability of His counsel confirmed it by an oath.”
Inheritance — what is involved? God’s purpose to save us, God’s purpose to make us like Jesus, and then God’s purpose to give us everything He has. Ho, ho, ho. Isn’t that wonderful? To an inheritance. Now Peter says, “It’ incorruptible,” — that means nobody can tinker with it and spoil it. “undefiled.” — it isn’t going to, it isn’t going to be changed by somebody’s, somebody’s legal maneuverings. And, “that fadeth not away.” — it’s not going to become less valuable as the years go by, but it’s kept in heaven for you who are kept by the power of God through faith and through salvation.
There’s two kinds of keeping — God keeps the inheritance, He keeps His promise. All of God’s plans are intact. The things that happen in this world don’t jar the plans of God for you, beloved. You can depend upon what He has in mind for you. And the second kind of keeping is what He does for you and for me. “You who are kept by the power of God through faith, onto salvation.” Yes, you’re an heir of God’s promise to, to, to save you, to make you like the Lord Jesus, and then to give you everything He has — that’s your inheritance in Christ.
Well, he says, “You who are kept by the power of God, through faith, unto salvation, ready to be revealed in the last time.” How does God keep people? Have you ever wondered about that? How does God keep you and me? Well first of all, He does it through the indwelling Holy Spirit of God. When you receive the Lord Jesus Christ as your Lord, and He becomes then your savior from sin, the Holy Spirit of God comes to dwell in your life.
Paul said to the people at Corinth, who certainly were in mess and needed a lot of cleaning up, but they were saved. And he said, “Know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which ye have of God. And hear not your own for you’re bought with a price.” He said to the folk at Rome, “If anyone have not the spirit of Christ, he has none of his.” The spirit of God dwells within the believer from that moment of conversion on. Second, the Holy Spirit of God wants to fill every room in your heart house.
Ephesians 5 says, “Be not drunk with wine wherein is excess, but be filled with the Spirit.” And that word ‘filled’ is translated from the same Greek verb as ‘drunk’. “Don’t be drunk with wine, but be drunk with the Spirit. Don’t be controlled by the alcoholic content of what you drink, but be controlled by the divine content of the person who dwells within you.”
And then God keeps you as you yield yourself to Him. “As ye have yielded…” this is Romans 6:19, “As ye have yielded the members of your body, slaves to unrighteousness. Even so, same thing, same way, same process. Even so now, yield your members, servants to righteousness, and the result will be holy living.” I’m paraphrasing that a little as I quote these verses from memory. It’s a matter of surrendering to the Holy Spirit of God who dwells within you, so that you can be holy in your life, as the Holy Spirit controls you.
How does God keep people? He keeps people through the presence and power of a person who lives within you, and to whom you give voluntarily, by faith. See it says, “You who are kept by faith,” see, “kept by the power of God through faith…” 1 Peter 1:5, “to whom you give by faith, the control of your life.” How else does God keep? He keeps through the content of your mind, which determines your decisions. “Thy word have I hid in my heart, that I might not sin,” says the psalmist, “against Thee.”
Why don’t we get at this again a little more the next time we get together?
Dear Father, keep us today by Thy Spirit and by Thy Word in Jesus name. Amen.
Till I meet you once again by way of radio, walk with the King today and be a blessing!
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