7 Reasons I Celebrate Easter: #7 Living Hope

7 Reasons I Celebrate Easter: #7 Living Hope
In this series, I started with the bad news.  We are all sinners separated from God and we cannot do enough deeds to earn good standing with Him.  That is really bad news – not only now, but for all eternity -  if we don’t accept the good news.
But we have been progressing through the good news.  God loved the world enough to send His only son, Jesus Christ, to die for us while we were yet sinners.  His death on the cross and resurrection broke the power of sin and death.  When we accept His sacrifice for us, we become a new creation clothed in Christ’s righteousness.
And all of this is a gift!  It is free and simple to receive!
It just gets better and better.  So I’m excited to share the hope that everyone who is IN CHRIST can cling to in these dark days.

Abundance for today

Jesus told His disciples that He came, not only to seek and to save the lost, but so we could have abundant life.
The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.  John 10:10
 Christ came that our life here on earth could be plentiful.  I love Merriam-Webster’s second definition of abundant.  “Marked by great plenty” or “Amply supplied.”  This matches the Greek word that can mean over and above or more than sufficient. 
While the world looks at abundance monetarily or materialistically, God’s view of abundance is quite different.  Let’s look at a few of the bounties of life in Christ.

The Holy Spirit

Jesus promised his followers that He would send a Helper, the parakletos.  Scripture teaches about his many roles, which include abiding in us,  comforting, testifying about Christ and the truth, and testifying about our position in Christ.

and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us.  Romans 5:5
When Jesus promised that He would be with us always, even to the end of the age, the Holy Spirit was in view.  He knew we would have difficulties; it is a broken world.  Yet it is an abundant life because of Christ’s constant presence through the Holy Spirit.  


Another benefit of the Holy Spirit's indwelling is our having access to His great power.
that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with power through His Spirit in the inner man,…Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us, Ephesians 3:16, 20
The same power that accompanied Christ and empowered Him to overcome temptation in the wilderness is ours.  The same power that raised Christ from the dead is ours when we are in Christ.

Confidence in our salvation

We don’t have to wonder if we are saved.  When we take hold of Christ by faith, He takes hold of us.  We become children of God and the Holy Spirit then begins testifying with our spirit this amazing truth!
The Spirit Himself testifies with our spirit that we are children of God, Romans 8:16

Everything we need

Remember back to the first list of benefits of the Holy Spirit’s indwelling us?   He testifies about Christ.  Peter says that is what gives us everything we need.
seeing that His divine power has granted to us everything pertaining to life and godliness, through the true knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and excellence.  2 Peter 1:3
Satan, the accuser, often attacks believers by questioning their position in Christ.  Let the Holy Spirit give you abundant assurance of your adoption into the family. 
In these days when we are trying to accumulate abundance in many ways, let’s rest in HIS abundance.
Not only did Christ come to supply bountifully for our present, but He lives to provide for our future.

Abundance for eternity

In My Father’s house are many dwelling places; if it were not so, I would have told you; for I go to prepare a place for you. 3 If I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself, that where I am, there you may be also.  John 14:2-3
We will be with Him as soon as our time on earth is done.   We will be with the one who loved us enough to die for us, though He is the King of kings and Lord of Lords. 
Jesus told us through His message to His first disciples that we would live in eternity with Him.  Then Paul wrote about this several times in His letters:
So we are always confident, even though we know that as long as we live in these bodies we are not at home with the Lord. 7 For we live by believing and not by seeing. 8 Yes, we are fully confident, and we would rather be away from these earthly bodies, for then we will be at home with the Lord. 2 Corinthians 5:6-8
What great hope we have that life in Christ gives us access to all the promises made to 
believers in His revelation to John.  While we have experienced becoming a new creation at the time of our salvation, He is making ALL THINGS new for eternity.
And I heard a loud voice from the throne, saying, “Behold, the tabernacle of God is among men, and He will dwell among them, and they shall be His people, and God Himself will be among them, 4 and He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and there will no longer be any death; there will no longer be any mourning, or crying, or pain; the first things have passed away.”  And He who sits on the throne said, “Behold, I am making all things new.” And He *said, “Write, for these words are faithful and true.”  Revelation 21:3-5
If you are in Christ, I pray you are rejoicing in this great hope every day and sharing it with others!  Is there anyone you know that doesn’t need to know or be reminded of these marvelous promises?
If you are not in Christ, but you sense Him calling out to you, say, “Yes, Lord!” today!  You can do it now!  Or if you would like some additional instruction or have questions, you can reply to this message or click “Contact” in the menu.  I will get with you as quickly as possible.
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