The Christian’s Hope
16 June 2019 AM – Hebrews 6:9-20 – Heb19 – Scott Childs
Introduction: When a religious person says, “I hope I will go to heaven someday,” he or she is stating a wish. Those who make such a hopeful wish are usually following a religious path that does not lead to heaven.
The hope described in the Bible is a firm confidence in God’s promises. God promises every Christian hope: Of resurrection, Ac 24:15; of the glory of God, Ro 5:2; of righteousness, Gal 5:5; of our calling to salvation, Eph 1:18; of heaven Col 1:5; of the Gospel, Col 1:23; of glory, Col 1:27; of Christ’s return to take us to heaven, 1Th 4:13; of eternal life, Tit 1:2; a hope that is alive not dead, 1Pe 1:3. Bible hope is the full confidence that you will be resurrected and spend eternity in heaven.
Transition: Yes, God promises Christians this hope! In our text, God makes three statements about our hope that ought to encourage us.
The 1st statement about our hope that ought to encourage us is…
1. Every one of us can lay hold of this hope, Heb 6:9-12
a. Every Christian can have this hope.
1) After just addressing those who might fall away from the Gospel, Paul was persuaded of better things that accompany salvation for his readers, v.9. He believed that most of his readers were true Christians.
2) Because of their true faith, they had showed love toward God’s name by ministering to the saints, v.10.
3) Paul desired that every one of his readers might have the full assurance or confidence of hope, v.11. He did not want anyone to walk away from the Gospel of Christ without salvation.
b. We must imitate those who inherit God’s promises
1) The apostle warns against slothfulness or unwillingness to work. He was not saying that we must work for our salvation, but that we must exercise patience and not demand that God fulfils His promises immediately.
2) We are to follow or imitate those who through faith and patience inherit the promises. The apostle illustrated the needed patience in the life of Abraham, v.12-15.
a) Abraham was an old man with no children.
b) God promised to bless him with a son and a multitude of offspring.
c) He patiently (and sometimes not so patiently) waited and God fulfilled His promise.
d) Christians are the heirs of the eternal promise made to Abraham. (Galatians 3:7-9) “Know ye therefore that they which are of faith, the same are the children of Abraham. And the scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the heathen through faith, preached before the gospel unto Abraham, saying, In thee shall all nations be blessed. So then they which be of faith are blessed with faithful Abraham.” (Hebrews 11:16) “But now they desire a better country, that is, an heavenly: wherefore God is not ashamed to be called their God: for he hath prepared for them a city.”
O Every Christian can lay hold of this hope!
The 2nd statement about our hope that ought to encourage us is…
2. God’s truthfulness assures of this hope, Heb 6:16-18
a. God promised and made an oath to Abraham
1) When men take an oath to assure that they will tell the truth, that oath should end any strife about what they say (v.16). Sadly, today oaths mean very little.
2) God made a promise to Abraham that was immutable or unchangeable.
3) God confirmed His promise with an oath. He did this to assure us that we can trust Him. Be not discouraged! If you are saved, your hope is in heaven. (Colossians 1:5) “For the hope which is laid up for you in heaven, whereof ye heard before in the word of the truth of the gospel;”
b. God cannot lie
1) These two immutable (unchangeable) things (accomplished facts) are God’s promise and his oath.
2) It is impossible for God to lie. Men may lie. The news media often lies. God cannot lie. It is impossible. God is truth; therefore, it is impossible for Him to say something that is not true. “It is impossible for God to break His promise, impossible also for him to falsify His oath.” Expositors
3) These facts give a strong consolation (encouragement) to all who have fled for refuge to lay hold upon the hope set before us. Genuine Christians have nothing to fear. God will keep His word. Because of our faith in Christ, we have a refuge, shelter, hiding place from eternal judgment.
O God’s truthfulness assures us of this hope.
The 3rd statement about our hope that ought to encourage us is…
3. This hope is the believer’s anchor, Heb 6:19-20
a. This hope is an anchor of the soul
1) I am not a boatman, but I do know that an anchor is a heavy piece of metal designed to grip the floor of the sea to keep the boat above from drifting away from a location, drifting off course during a storm or drifting into some nearby danger.
2) The Christian’s hope of resurrection and eternal life in heaven is an anchor to keep the soul from drifting into fear, doubt and worry. During the storms of life, eternal hope gives the Christian stability and peace.
3) Those without Christ have no hope of eternal life. They drift about on life’s sea with no clue as to where they will end up.
4) The believer’s hope is not an emotional crutch for the weak-hearted religious nut as many claim. It is a sure promise of our Creator God that keeps us looking forward to eternity with Him.
5) Ponder the words of the hymn, We Have an Anchor, by Priscilla Owens. “Will your anchor hold in the storms of life, when the clouds unfold their wings of strife? When the strong tides lift and the cables strain, will your anchor drift or firm remain? We have an anchor that keeps the soul steadfast and sure while the billows roll, fastened to the Rock which cannot move, grounded firm and dep in the Savior’s love.” GH p.265
b. This anchor will never move
1) It is sure, firm, solid and certain.
2) It is steadfast, stable, solid and trusty.
3) Our anchor grips the Rock, Jesus Christ, who entered within the veil. What does that have to do with hope?
a) In the Temple in Jerusalem, a veil separated the holy place from the most holy place where God dwelt on the Ark of the Covenant.
b) When Christ died on the cross, the veil of the temple ripped in half from the top to the bottom, opening up the holiest place to all believers.
c) Christ by His shed blood paid in full for the judgment our sins deserved. As our great high Priest, Christ applied His own blood to our account. By faith in His payment, any sinner can be forgiven and receive the hope of eternal life in heaven.
Conclusion: The Christian’s hope is offered to everyone who will repent and place his faith in Christ’s payment. Have you done that? If so, when? You have not always been a Christian as some claim. You did not become a Christian by attending church or being baptised. You only have this hope if you have truly trusted Christ to save your soul. If you have no hope, come see me and let me explain again the Gospel to you.
God cannot lie. He promised eternal hope of heaven to all who trust Him by faith. If Christ has saved you, you have nothing to fear. God will keep His promise.
Let this hope be the anchor of your soul. Let it keep you focussed on eternity. Set your affections on things above not on things of this earth. When the storms of life threaten to cause you to doubt, meditate on your eternal hope. Keep on “Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ;” (Titus 2:13)
Song: We have an Anchor, 265