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Robert R. McLaughlin Bible Ministries
The TREE OF LIFE weekly teaching summary from the week ending December 07, 1997

Tree of Life 12/07/97

The Doctrine of Hope.

We all need some form of anticipation in our lives. What better to anticipate than eternity and the execution of God's will, plan, and purpose for our lives. God promises that if we honor His word through any bad situation we go through it will work out to our benefit and His glory. Suffering always has an end result. Suffering be it self induced or undeserved can work out to our benefit if we stick with the plan and purpose of God and not seek to establish our own solutions. We should all have an absolute confidence that our circumstances in this life are going to change. We should not be wishing for this but be convinced of it! So, rather than complain about what you are going through why not view suffering as it is meant to be, an opportunity to bring glory to God and bring blessings to yourself.

God will test your emotions and this may often appear as suffering. The issue thereafter is will you apply what you believe of God's word and execute His plan. Pin-pointing the time things will change in the future is not in your reach but the hope of better things is a fact of reality when you remain in God's plan for your life.

When you compare your sufferings in time with the weight of glory, it is producing in eternity suddenly things aren't so bad. This is not to say that life is a total disappointment and there is no pleasure to be found. God's viewpoint lends us a happiness and source of power to find pleasure in all things, even in suffering. Undeserved suffering is a source of tremendous blessing providing that you do not enter into the arrogant skills, especially the first, self deception. To be disillusioned is to make negative decisions against the plan of God and enter into deceiving oneself. In such deception the idea that the grass is greener on the other side dominates the thought pattern. Most believers do not have the hope of God but wallow rather in their emotions and hence reside under the influence of the Old Sin Nature. Weak believers live by sight, strong believers live by faith. And how is faith developed? By hope and hope has one source... positive volition toward doctrine. Hope indicates that you have maximum knowledge of the word of God and complete trust in His character and integrity. It is Bible doctrine; the word of God which always stands in between the potential and the reality of having something. Therefore, in hope, the grace of God is exploited whereas the believer who lives by sight only exploites the foolish and volatile meanderings of man's concepts on life.
Hope is the monopoly of Christianity under which there are three different hopes:

Hope 1 is the hope at salvation of eternal life. And again, this is not a wishing for eternal life, it is an absolute confidence that yes you have eternal life and it can never be taken away. And, having the reality of salvation leaves behind the hope of it. It is now "seen" or received and so the new believer moves into the second hope.

Hope 2 is the hope after salvation which keeps the believer motivated. It is the hope of reaching spiritual maturity and receiving the blessings promised to the believer in spiritual adulthood. This hope is a confident expectation of the future. This second hope takes more devotion than did the first hope. And once H2 becomes a reality at reaching spiritual maturity (SM) the believer then replaces the reality of Hope 2 with the motivation of Hope 3.

Hope 3 is the final hope that in eternity future, at the Judgment Seat of Christ you will receive fantastic rewards! Such hope is a great motivator to serve God, REV 7:15, the very purpose for which we were created, to serve God. The purpose too for which Satan was created but deviated from. How do we know if we love God? By the ministering (serving) of His saints, HEB 6:10.

So, to hope to be relieved from your so called misery rather than hope to glorify God equals a loser believer. Think of the suffering the Lord Jesus Christ went through for your life. It should be an honor on your part to go through whatever suffering you need to in order to execute the tactics established by the strategy of our Lord Jesus Christ incarnate. Paul said he would go through whatever he had to reach SM and glorify God. To pass through the sufferings of time and stick with God's plan is to eventually reach spiritual maturity and receive blessings! Such blessings in time are parlayed into blessings in eternity, blessings with which we worship TLJC on His throne! But if you have no residual doctrine you have no hope, if you have no hope you have no confidence, if you have no confidence you have no spiritual growth, without spiritual growth there is no personal love for God, and where there is no personal love for God there is no impersonal love for all mankind.

Hope requires endurance and patience. To take short cuts or side roads around sufferings means NOT reaching the high ground of spiritual maturity. PHI 1:29 tells us that God has designed undeserved sufferings for our advance in the spiritual life. And in suffering what keeps us going is hope. Positive volition toward doctrine (PVTD) produces an energy and vigor that keeps us moving forward in hope/confidence. Disasters, pressures, and testings are brought in to test whether or not you really want to live the spiritual life. Most learn the principles and enjoy them, but when faced with the pressure, or rather once engaged they turn and run back to the so called safety of their futile and volatile life. We are instructed that we will need courage in regard to our anticipation of the future,HEB 6:10-20, indicating that our hope will be tested! Fortitude and courage comes from concentration on doctrine and application of that doctrine under pressure. A trained soldier does not turn and run when faced with the heat of the battle.

Hope anticipates the integrity of God with regard to the future. The amount of confidence you have in the integrity of God is the amount of hope you have in your life. All the various times in your life when you operated in hope or rather had confidence in God established a strong cord of faith. Faith in God who is the author of Hope 1, Titus 1:2, who is the author of Hope 2, GAL 5:5, and who is the author of Hope 3, HEB 6:10- 20. But any hope in your life is only a potential until you learn enough of the pertinent doctrine to make that hope a reality. Hope has to do with trusting in God's word. A great example of Hope 2 would be Abraham's hope in the promise of God to give him an heir. He hoped that even though he was passed the proper time of his and his wife's sexual vigor, ROM 4:19. And though they failed and entered into their own plans at times, they rebounded and continued forward in the hope of God's promise. How much more should your hope of reaching spiritual maturity and receiving rewards at the Judgment Seat of Christ be an absolute confidence. Our hope should be both sure and steadfast, and the anchor of our souls, HEB 6:19. Our hope should bring us to the holiest place, which is, beyond the veil of the holy of holies. The place opened to us by TLJC as our forerunner, the throne of God.

The subject of hope is the anchor of the believer's soul, HEB 6:19. We should want to know all we can about that which secures and stabilizes your soul. But this takes time and study, dedication and devotion to come to realize the hope or confident expectation of the future. HEB 6:13-18 informs us that we are to lay hold of the hope set before us. The word anchor is the Greek noun ankuran meaning that which keeps us safe and stable and secure. It is Bible doctrine in the soul which is the believer's anchor and gives the believer confidence in the future and enjoyment of what God provides for him now. Our hope or expectation in time is our personal sense of destiny , the first tactical objective of the spiritual life. This objective includes mastery of the mechanics of the spiritual life and trust in the character and nature of God. Hope, as a problem solving device, functions in stress and adversity through recall of B.D. pertinent to the future so that this recall brings comfort, tranquility, perspective, and solutions to present problems. Good expectations originate from metabolized doctrine circulating in the soul. Bad expectations result from emotional revolt of the soul, locked in negative volition, blackout of the soul, and scar tissue of the soul taking over control of the soul. And there is nothing more pitiful in life than to live our life through with no hope for the future and upon reaching the dying stage to be filled with fear and regrets rather than hope and excitement of the coming eternal state. Only when we execute, throughout our lives, God's plan in time can we be absolutely sure of the blessings we will receive when we stand before our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ in eternity. The believer who lives life by sight, though still saved, will simply watch the grand distribution of blessings at the Judgment Seat of Christ never hearing his name called for the handing out of rewards with which to honor our Lord! Now is the time to cultivate God's hope in our souls. Now is the time to devote ourselves to the advance of the tactical victory of our Lord Jesus Christ, apart from which there is no hope.PSA 39:7 "...my hope is in Thee"PSA 119:116 "Sustain me according to Thy word that I may live; And do not let me be ashamed of my hope."

**Note: These doctrines are zipped and needs a unzipping utility to view them.**

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