Notes from Tim Kellers sermon Hope part 1: the grammar of hope (Eph 1:13-22)
I. The importance of hope:
Victor Frankels book on the Jews who survived the concentration camps the difference largely centered around what people hoped in. Frederick Niche believed that if we came from nothing and are going to nothing, then the logical conclusion is that we have no reason for hope.
II. The content of hope:
Paul prays for these people that they would have their eyes opened to something, namely to see Gods inheritance. What is it that God inherits? The saints Paul wants us to be smitten by how God feels when He looks at you. Our hope is a personal hope AND a material hope (Christ is the firstborn among the dead and was risen to a material future we are too).
III. How to get hope:
Focus on 1. all that Christ did was for the church, and 2. focus on what was Jesus living hope. Heb 12:1 says for the joy set before Him he endured the cross. What was this joy since He already had the splendor of heaven as Gods only son? What was Christs living hope? What is it that Jesus saw and was able to steady his face like flint in determination of the goal? Isaiah 53 says that you and I were Christs living hope. It says,
10 Yet it was the will of the Lord to crush him;
he has put him to grief;
when his soul makes an offering for sin,
he shall see his offspring; he shall prolong his days;
the will of the Lord shall prosper in his hand.
11 Out of the anguish of his soul he shall see and be satisfied;
by his knowledge shall the righteous one, my servant,
make many to be accounted righteous,
and he shall bear their iniquities.
I admit that this is a bit hard to get my head around: how can it be true that I am the living hope of Christ and at the same time this is not man-centric but God centric? The fact is that God saves sinners like me for the glory of His name and that is not separate or different from me being the joy set before Christ as He suffered. It is one in the same. Did Christ die for me or did He die because His Father willed it according to verse 10? The answer is YES both, not either or. This is similar to the apparent dilemma over should I choose my happiness or the glory of God? Answer: God is glorified in me most when I am most satisfied and resting in Him. These are not two paths but the same.
To the degree that you believe that you were Christs living hope as he suffered is the degree that Christ is your living hope in your daily life. 1 Peter 1:13 calls us to be self-controlled by the living hope that we have of the grace to be given us when Christ returns.
May Christ be this type of living hope in our lives and cause us to live lives of joyful, radical obedience and delight!