This is a story about Breinne McAtee. Breinne has been attending Elgin City Church upon her return f... read more
Hope and a Future
Jeremiah 29:11 This is what the LORD says: “When seventy years are completed for Babylon, I will come to you and fulfill my good promise to bring you back to this place. For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. I will be found by you,” declares the LORD.
Shared Human Experience: New job, hoping for the right commissions to affect my salary.
Lots of things that I’m hoping for: A trip to Israel, a new baby boy, new car some day, furthering my education, hoping that our nation can get back on track and secure our future as a country.
What are some things that you are hoping for?
Regarding the specifics of Jeremiah 29:11, in 605 B.C. the Babylonian’s invaded Jerusalem and took the Israelites captive. Jeremiah 29 is part of a letter that the prophet Jeremiah sent to the surviving Israelites who had been taken captive by the Babylonians. God’s Word (through Jeremiah) to the exiles was to prepare for a long stay in Babylon. They were to build houses and settle down. They were also to plant gardens to sustain them during the period. Life was to go on as normal. The people were exhorted to marry and have sons and daughters. Instead of hoping for Babylon’s quick demise, they were encouraged to seek its peace and prosperity. Jeremiah even told the Israelites to pray for Babylon (Jeremiah 29:4-9).
Big Idea: God’s plans for our lives always involve prospering us and giving us a hopeful future. We don’t have to wonder if God is for us.
Hope that is seen is not hope at all.
Romans 8:24 “For in this hope we were saved. But hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what they already have? But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently.”
Paul is referring to the hope of the resurrection and the revealing of the sons of God.
There is an aspect of “waiting” involved in hope. This is what we as American’s enjoy least. The waiting game of hope….
Biblical hope goes beyond “wishful thinking”
Advertising doesn’t just sell us a product or service, it tries to sell us hope for a better life. From a worldly perspective we are always wishing things will get better one day…
Messengers bring us news of false hopes…(Jeremiah’s dilemma)
Hope in a product is one thing, what is our hope in is the question?
Christians are to have hope because of the certain expectation in the one who has promised to bring it about. Where putting our trust and hope in worldly things will fail us, putting our hope in God will never disappoint.
“For you have been my hope, Sovereign LORD, my confidence since my youth.” – Psalm 71:5
God must be our hope and the anchor of our souls
We worship and put our hope in God not for what he can do for us, but for simply WHO he is.
Our God is a God of hope, for he is the object of our hope. This is why theologian Charles Spurgeon could say to those burdened with guilt and depression,
“Mountains, when in darkness hidden, are as real as in day, and God’s love is as true to you now as it was in your brightest moments.”
Application: Don’t give up hope on your dreams.
Encourage you to begin to write or visually apply scriptures, pictures or ideas around your house of things that you are believing for.
Jeremiah 29:11 doesn’t only apply to us individually but to a whole nation and us corporately. We must believe that God has a plan for us as a nation and as a church. We hope for a future redemption, just like Israel was hoping…