Live in the Hope we have in Jesus
December 20, 2022
With each birthday I am reminded how much closer I am getting to be with Jesus.
Jesus said he wants us to be with him.
John 17: 24"Father, I want those you have given me to be with me where I am, and to see my glory, the glory you have given me because you loved me before the creation of the world.
Paul wanted to be with Jesus.
Philippians 1: 21 For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain. 22 If I am to go on living in the body, this will mean fruitful labor for me. Yet what shall I choose? I do not know! 23 I am torn between the two: I desire to depart and be with Christ, which is better by far;
I have often wondered how many people in church believe it is far better to die and be with Jesus forever.
Those whose heart want to be with Christ forever have their thoughts on things in heaven and not earthly things because heaven is where Jesus is.
Colossians 3: 1 Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. 2 Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. 3 For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. 4 When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.
Faith that is sure of the hope of being with Jesus forever keeps them from losing heart and overcome the troubles and worries they will have in this world.
2 Corinthians 4: 16 Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. 17 For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. 18 So, we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.
When we believe that it is far better to depart and be with Jesus forever even though we do not see now gives us hope that helps us to overcomes our worries and troubles that we go through in this world believing they are just temporary.
Imagine what the world thinks when people they know go to church share their worries and troubles being hopeless. They think being a Christian is no better than themselves.
Having thoughts on things above it is thinking of what Paul teaches we will receive from God.
2 Corinthians 5: 1 Now we know that if the earthly tent we live in is destroyed, we have a building from God, an eternal house in heaven, not built by human hands. 2 Meanwhile we groan, longing to be clothed with our heavenly dwelling, 3 because when we are clothed, we will not be found naked. 4 For while we are in this tent, we groan and are burdened, because we do not wish to be unclothed but to be clothed with our heavenly dwelling, so that what is mortal may be swallowed up by life.
One day we will receive an eternal house from God when Jesus returns to gather his elect and bring with him the spirit of those who have died in him and together receive their eternal house, their new spiritual body.
1 Thessalonians 4: 14 We believe that Jesus died and rose again and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in him. 15 According to the Lord's own word, we tell you that we who are still alive, who are left till the coming of the Lord, will certainly not precede those who have fallen asleep. 16 For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. 17 After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so, we will be with the Lord forever. 18 Therefore encourage each other with these words.
Let us encourage each other constantly of this hope we have in Jesus returning to gather all his followers and bring with him all those who have died in him and giving us our new spiritual body in the sky and take them home to be with him forever.
When you have this hope in Christ you have been called by God, you are one of his elect and his chosen who was created for this very purpose of receiving eternal life.
2 Corinthians 5: 5 Now it is God who has made us for this very purpose and has given us the Spirit as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come. 6 Therefore we are always confident and know that as long as we are at home in the body we are away from the Lord. 7 We live by faith, not by sight. 8 We are confident, I say, and would prefer to be away from the body and at home with the Lord. 9 So we make it our goal to please him, whether we are at home in the body or away from it.
The Holy Spirit dwells in all who confess Jesus as their Lord becoming their seal guaranteeing their eternal life which gives you the confidence that your spirit will be with Jesus when it leaves your body. This compels you to love and please Jesus by fearfully obeying his teachings and commandments.
Because on day we all must appear before Jesus when he sits on his judgement seat and judge to see if we truly made him the Lord of our life.
2 Corinthians 5: 10 For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive what is due him for the things done while in the body, whether good or bad. 11 Since, then, we know what it is to fear the Lord, we try to persuade men. What we are is plain to God, and I hope it is also plain to your conscience.
Our love for Jesus compels us to be living proof of our love for him so that others who see it can testify that he is our Lord.
2 Corinthians 5: 14 For Christ's love compels us, because we are convinced that one died for all, and therefore all died. 15 And he died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised again.
Our love for Jesus will make us his new creation in the way we see things.
2 Corinthians 5: 16 So from now on we regard no one from a worldly point of view. Though we once regarded Christ in this way, we do so no longer. 17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come! 18 All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: 19 that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting men's sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation. 20 We are therefore Christ's ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ's behalf: Be reconciled to God. 21 God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.
To be the righteousness of God is to become his new creation that no longer sees others from a worldly point of view but see everyone from God’s point of view as people whose sins have been forgiven through the sacrifice of his Son. All who believes in the forgiveness we received from God because of his Son are reconciled back to him and we become his ambassador to share this message of reconciliation to all who are seeking to be with God.
Let us love Jesus and be his ambassadors of his Father’s love, Ps. Glenn.