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Read Introduction to Colossians

 

“because of the hope…”

 

The third area for which Paul gives thanks for the Colossians is their hope. He thanks God that the Colossian faith was not secret, their love was not partial and their hope was not misplaced.

“because of the hope “

Paul links together the Colossian faith and love with their hope.

“Because of” — because of the glorious anticipation of their future together. Their hope is not the ground of either faith or love but it is the occasion of both faith and love. It is a grand occasion to develop them and call them out to action. Paul gives thanks “because of” their hope in the wonderful prospect of Christ’s coming. Because they have such hope, they act more boldly and lovingly.

Hope is no fancied feeling of future bliss but a present experience that gives complexion and composure to every day of life. Hope is the motive behind faith and love. Hope reaches into the future and brings it back into the present. Hope reaches into heaven and brings it back down to earth.

The third grace God worked in them was hope. The Christian has a future. We look for the blessed hope (Tit. 2:13). The hope of heaven impacts how we live on earth. The more we fix our hope on eternal values the more liberal we will be on earth.

The Greek word for hope has no relation to our English word “I hope so.” That is a desire with no assurance of fulfillment in fact, “I hope it will not rain today.” I have no guarantee of that. There are clouds on the horizon so I take my umbrella with me. The New Testament word for hope is something that is certain because it does not depend on us. It depends on the word and work of Christ.

Principle:

Hope anticipates, faith appropriates. Faith accepts what hope expects.

Application:

If you are not a Christian you have a horrible future. Your future is the lake of fire. If all the hope you have is social insurance, God help you. If you are born again you have a wonderful future: the hope laid up in heaven.

Hope for the Christian is also the anchor of the soul. It settles our attitude and gives us tenacity for the tough times. The future is as bright as the promises of God.

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