top of page

One Hope




PRINCETON CHRISTIAN CHURCH


EPHESIANS 4:1-6                      21 APRIL 2024

 

Last Lord’s Day, we looked at Paul’s letter to the church in Ephesus – Ephesians chapter 6. I want us to linger a little longer in that passage again today.


Our thoughts last week were on the unity of the Spirit, and we found that there is one Body of Christ and one Spirit of Christ.


Today, I want us to turn our attention to another of those ONES listed in this passage in Ephesians chapter 4.


Do you know how sometimes something or some sound comes into your mind, and you don’t know why or how it popped in there?


I had one of those moments as I was preparing this message.


I remember many years ago hearing a song that had as part of the lyrics: “One is the loneliest number that you’ll ever do.”  As I thought about that, I couldn’t remember – if I ever knew – who recorded that song. So, I had to Google it to find out who sang the song – I didn’t have a clue. Turns out it was some rock group I would not have listened to on purpose anyway.


But the One we are looking at today is in the same verse as we focused on last week – verse 4. And this One is one we must listen to on purpose.


READ – Ephesians 4:4 

“There is one body and one Spirit, just as also you were called in ONE HOPE of your calling”

ONE HOPE


Paul says we have one hope in our calling. As Christians, we all pursue the same goal and pursuing the same goal is how we achieve unity.


We are all striving toward the one goal of a world redeemed in Christ.


We live in a world filled with uncertainty. Life seems more and more uncertain. Watch the news on TV. There is very little going on in our country and in the world that causes us to be hopeful.


It seems that if there is a positive event or happening, news is suppressed. It seems that multitudes of people thrive on trouble and despair.


We see people whose lives are filled with hopelessness, fear, and dread everywhere.

 

And, amid all that uncertainty and despair, we are reminded that our only real hope is found in Him – Jesus Christ our Savior – the One who died so that we could live.


The Apostle Paul writes further about his hope in Christ in Colossians 1:24-29 as he describes the hope he has – and that we have as well.


“Now I rejoice in my sufferings for your sake, and in my flesh, I am supplementing what is lacking in Christ’s afflictions on behalf of His body, which is the church. I was made a minister of this church according to the commission from God granted to me for your benefit, so that I might fully carry out the preaching of the word of God, that is, the mystery which had been hidden from the past ages and generations, but now has been revealed to His saints, to whom God willed to make known what the wealth of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles is, the mystery that is Christ in you, he hope of glory. We proclaim Him, admonishing every person and teaching every person with all wisdom, so that we may present every person complete in Christ. For this purpose I also labor, striving according to His power which works mightily within me.”

The Christian hope is that God’s way is the best way and that the only real peace, the only real joy, and the only true and lasting reward are to be found in the peace we have in knowing Christ.


In our humanness, we always seem to think that we must know every detail—or, as is written in the Old Testament, every jot and tittle. Our finite minds seek to know all the details about a subject before we can accept or believe a word or concept.


As Christians, we have the assurance that God knows what is best for us. He has already laid out the plan for us.


And because of His preparation, we can wholeheartedly accept that the only hope we have in this life comes from Him. And, we can accept that He is the only hope we have in the life to come – that is eternal life as well.


We can, without doubt, accept that the Gospel is the good news from God.


God is a Friend and He loves the souls of man. And that sets us in a right relationship with God.


We can be assured that the Gospel is truth.


Consider any other religion. There is no assurance that God is alive and living within followers of any other religion.


I learned something as I was writing this message. There are 12 major religions in this world.


Christianity: Judaism, Hinduism, Islam, Sikhism, Shinto, Folk Religion, Buddhism, Jainism, Taoism, Bah’a’ I Faith, Zoroastrianism, Spiritism.


Looking at just our country – the United States:


  • 34% Protestants 

  • 23% Catholics 

  • 11% Non-Specific Christians 

  • 2% Mormons  

  • 2% Judaism 

  • 6% Other Religions   

  • 21% Unaffiliated with any religion

You can see that in our country, a greater percentage of people claim Protestantism as their religion.


But that does not make them all Christians. The majority of those adopt sectarian names – manufactured names – not Biblical names.


The Gospel of Jesus Christ is so different from any other world religion. Very few things in this world are available to everyone on this earth.


Any organization you desire to be a part of will have entrance requirements that must be met before you can be a part of the organization.


It may be that you need to have a certain mental capacity or achievement to join an organization.


Your social status may decide whether you would be a suitable member of some organizations.


To be accepted in some groups your material wealth would determine your eligibility.


But the Gospel is different – The message of the Gospel is open to every man, woman, and child on the face of the earth – without exception.


No other organization or group of any kind has the hope of belonging as does the church of Jesus Christ.


In Christ, we have HOPE


We have the Hope of Glory, the Hope of Redemption, and the Hope of Transformation through our Lord.


The Hope of Glory (Colossians 1:27)


In Colossians 1:27, Paul writes,

"… to whom God willed to make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.

Our hope in Christ is not just wishful thinking; it is a confident expectation of the glory that awaits us in Him. As believers, we have the assurance that Christ dwells within us, guiding us towards the eternal glory promised to those who belong to Him.

 

The Hope of Redemption (Colossians 1:13-14)

“For He rescued us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, for forgiveness of sin.”

Paul reminds us there that in Christ, "we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins."


Our hope in Christ is grounded in His redemptive work on the cross.


Through His sacrifice, we have been set free from the bondage of sin and death, and we can look forward to the day when we will be fully restored and reconciled to God.


Our hope is not in our own efforts or our own merit, but our hope is in the finished work of Christ on our behalf.


So, nothing we can do will bring us lasting hope. It is all the work of Christ for us.


The Hope of Transformation (Colossians 1:28)


In Colossians 1:28, Paul emphasizes that his goal is to

"present everyone fully mature in Christ." Our hope in Christ extends beyond our salvation; it encompasses the ongoing process of transformation and spiritual growth that takes place in our lives. As we abide in Him and allow His Word to dwell richly in us, we are being conformed to the image of Christ. Our hope is that one day, we will be made complete and perfect in Him, lacking nothing.

In conclusion, let us hold fast to our hope in Christ. Our only real hope is found in Him, who is the author and perfecter of our faith. May we fix our eyes on Jesus, the source of our hope, and trust in His unfailing love and faithfulness. As we go forth from there this morning, let us remember that our hope in Christ is lasting and steadfast, for He is the same yesterday, today, and forever.


In our prayer to our Heavenly Father, we must thank Him for our hope in His Son, Jesus Christ. Ask Him to help us cling to this hope in times of trial and uncertainty, knowing that He is faithful to fulfill all His promises.


Pray for His Spirit to empower us to live out this hope daily and share it with others in need.

 

 

 

17 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All

Comments


bottom of page