Our Blessed Hope
20 September 2020 AM – Titus 2:13 – Tit20 – Scott Childs
Introduction: Unbelievers all around us have no hope. Their motto is eat, drink, and be merry for tomorrow we die. The Bible assures us that God created man to live forever. Because sin prevents us from living with God forever, God send Jesus to this earth to die and pay our eternal sin punishment. All who admit their guilt and receive Jesus’ payment by faith, receive God’s promise of living with him eternally. That is a wonderful promise. It is a blessed hope! (Read Titus 2:13)
Transition: Our text speaks of three things that ought greatly to encourage every faithful Christian.
Our text speaks of a Motivation
a. It continues the sentence from verses 11-12.
1) The sentence of this verse begins back in verse 11 and continues through verse 14. Always watch the punctuation in your Bible as it will help you keep things in context.
2) The same grace of God that brings salvation is teaching us how to live right in a wrong world and is also helping us look for the blessed hope.
b. This is a motivation for living right in a wrong world.
1) God knows that our flesh may tempts us not to deny ungodliness and worldly lust. God knows we may get slack in living soberly, righteously and godly. He knows that this present world is against us. It discourages godly living.
2) This present world offers only minimal rewards for faithful Christians. During the first century, Christians expected hardships, rejection, persecution, loss of property, and even martyrdom. Historians estimate that during the years 400-1600 A.D. 50 million Christians died for their faith in Christ. Today, our religious freedom is rapidly crumbling. (2 Timothy 3:12) “Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution.“
3) Our text presents a strong argument for the imminent return of Christ in the pre-Tribulation rapture. (See chart) Sadly, an increasing number of Baptists are adopting a post-tribulation view. However, this passage makes no sense if Christ is not coming until the end of the Tribulation. What motivation is that? There would be no need to prepare for Christ’s coming until the Antichrist ruled the world. God did not urge us to be looking for the Antichrist; He urged us to be looking for Christ.
4) Looking for Christ’s imminent (any moment) return is a great motivation to live right in a wrong world. For example, motorists only speed when they are not expecting a radar camera. Students only cheat when they are not expecting to get caught. The same is true spiritually. Christians only knowingly indulge in ungodliness and worldly lust when they are not expecting the Lord to return or have lost their fear of God.
5) Jesus could come today! (Philippians 3:20-21) “For our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ: Who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body, according to the working whereby he is able even to subdue all things unto himself.“
Our text speaks of an Anticipation
a. We see this in the words “looking for”.
1) Here God tells us to be looking for or expectantly awaiting the Lord’s return.
2) Paul was looking for Christ’s return in the first century. He urged Titus to teach the Christians on Crete to be looking for Christ’s return. We too must be looking for Christ’s return. Maranatha! (1Co 16:22, Our Lord is coming!)
b. Here we also find the object of our anticipation
1) The object of our looking is the blessed hope and glorious appearing of Christ.
2) The blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the Lord are one and the same event. (See whiteboard – the blessed hope and appearing, one article, two nouns connected by καί and). This is a Greek grammar rule revealing that both nouns refer to the same thing.
3) The Christian has hope of salvation from hell (1Th 5:8), of a home in heaven (Col 1:5), of glory (Col 1:27), of righteousness (Ga 5:5), a resurrected body (Ac 23:6), of eternal life (Tit 3:7), of a body like Christ’s (1Jn 3:2-3) and more. It is a steadfast confidence, not an uncertain wish.
4) How is it that the Christian’s blessed hope and Christ’s glorious appearing are the same thing? We find the answer in the following Scriptures. Read 1Th 4:15-17 and 1Co 15:51-53. When Christ comes to take us to Himself, He will fulfil every hope he has described for the Christian. (Review previous point).
5) God wants us to anticipate the blessed hope and glorious appearing of the Lord. He has a special crown for all who love His appearing. (2 Timothy 4:8) “Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing.“
6) Harry Ironside notes, “It is the return of the Lord that is thus put before us to influence our daily lives. It is one thing to hold the doctrine of the Lord’s return, but quite another to be held by that blessed hope.” Emphasis added.
Our text speaks of a Manifestation