INTRODUCTIONA man who loses hope loses his primary motivation for doing right and living holy. The Bible reveals what men do when they have no hope: “let us eat and drink; for to morrow we die” (1 Corinthians 15:32). If there is no hope in a resurrection, man sees no reason to cease to go after his strange gods (Jeremiah 2:25) or follow “the imagination of his evil heart” (Jeremiah 18:12). If there is no judgment after death, or if the Lord is not soon returning, then the greatest impetus for living the Christian life is lost. Man needs a special motivation to help him to live a life of purity. He should live in purity because He loves the Lord. Yet, the answer lies in the fact that the Lord is coming soon, and man will stand before Him to give an account, and all those who have this particular hope will purify themselves, “even as he [Jesus] is pure.” Hope makes all the difference!
- (For children): Paul told Titus to teach the people to live right because the Lord is coming back (Titus 2:11-15). Peter warned of the same thing (2 Peter 3:3-4, 9-11, 14). We would not want to be ashamed when He comes (1 John 2:28).
- (For everyone): Have you given up on the Lord’s return? Are you expecting Him to return today? How has your hope, or lack of hope, changed how you live your life on a daily basis?
- What happened in Acts 27:20 when the people on the ship lost hope that their lives would be spared? How could this be applied spiritually to your own life?
- Ask God to allow hope to purify your heart.
- Ask the Lord to strengthen your hope in His return.