Colossians 1:25-29 – “I was made a minister of this church I was made a minister according to the stewardship from God bestowed on me for your benefit, so that I might fully carry out the preaching of the word of God, 26 that is, the mystery which has been hidden from the past ages and generations, but has now been manifested to His saints, 27 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. 28 We proclaim Him, admonishing every man and teaching every man with all wisdom, so that we may present every man complete in Christ. 29 For this purpose also I labor, striving according to His power, which mightily works within me.” NASB
I have far more to say than I can deliver in the space available for a short devotional so bear with me as I try to hit the high points. I hope you are inspired and encouraged to delve deeper into this gold mine of truth. Hopefully, I will reach the destination of “The Hope of Glory” and how it affects believers today. I will attempt to examine what Biblical Hope is, what Biblical Glory is, and pray it will enable us to come to a better understanding of “Christ in us, the Hope of Glory.”
The apostle Paul, in this passage, attempted to identify the essence of his ministry. He said, “This is what I do!” Paul traveled the known world teaching people and preaching the gospel of Jesus Christ. The aim, goal, and vision of his ministry were to help people everywhere come to completeness, perfection, and wholeness spiritually.
His desire was that believers would become Spiritually Mature. He called it “The Mystery” in the sense that the truth he was preaching, and teaching were not apparent to the unbeliever but were available to all believers if they could and would receive it. That Mystery was, “Christ in you, the Hope of Glory.”
You should have asked, “What does that mean?” When Paul says, “Christ in you, the Hope of Glory” what does he mean? We recognize that he is declaring something of great importance as he says, “This is what I teach. This is what is going to make you complete, mature, and whole spiritually.” That gets my attention!
The word Hope has developed a bad reputation in today’s modern world. In some circles, it is believed that if you Hope, you are lacking in faith. However, I challenge that based on the Bible’s teaching about the word. It is a word that is found multiple times in the New Testament. Sadly, I am convinced that too many misuse the word and adopt the world’s use of the word which is not remotely similar to the Bible’s usage.
So, what is HOPE? I heard the definition expressed by a small boy when he said, “Hope is believing that you are going to get that, which anyone in their right mind knows you are not going to get.” That is the idea in the world’s view and some of the church. We can only Hope!
When the world talks about Hope, they mean, “It is highly improbable that you will ever get what you are hoping for.” Therefore, in that sense, it means that you are bordering on the impossible and to the average person it means you are clinging to a thread when all rational expectancy has vanished. I’ve been in hospital rooms and heard, “Well, all we can do now is hope.” That kind of Hope has disappointment deeply rooted in it.
Can you remember the dreams and visions of your teenage years? How many of those are realities today? Most people would acknowledge that those dreams have long ceased to exist. Hope, as understood by the world and much of the Church is rooted in disappointment because people do not believe they are going to get what they are hoping for. That is not the Hope of the Bible!
The Hope of the Bible is founded and grounded upon Expectancy. Biblical Hope means, “That positive unshakable confidence that a specific blessing from God will undoubtedly come to pass.” In that sense, Biblical Hope is closely akin to Biblical Faith.
Bible Hope has eyes for the future! It believes and expects! Biblical Hope has a strong element of Certainty built into it. The Hope of the world is founded upon disappointment and the Hope of the Bible is founded upon Certainty and Expectancy. WHY? Because of the God Factor. God promised what He has promised and no matter how impossible it may look, God said it and His Word Never returns to Him without accomplishing His purposes.
Bible Hope is not Fantasy, but it is an excited forward look with expectancy. Remember the words of Paul in Philippians 1:20, “According to my earnest expectation and hope…” The Amplified renders this, “My own eager desire, persistent expectation, and hope.” That is Powerful! It is the eager desire. It is the persistent expectation and certainty that says, “I Know that it is going to happen.” I Hope in God!
I will pause here and offer a little more in the next devotional. God, bless you richly is my prayer and desire as you enjoy this wonderful day in Him!