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Do you know the far-reaching potential of having a living hope?
At Easter we especially remember the tremendous possibilities Jesus’ resurrection gave us!
“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His abundant mercy has begotten us again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.” 1 Peter 1:3.
We have been given a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead. We have tremendous possibilities as a result of the work Jesus finished in the days of His; possibilities that didn’t exist in the Old Covenant.
Living hope = new possibilities!
The law in the Old Covenant was just a shadow of these possibilities. What is this hope, they didn’t have in the Old Covenant? It is Christ in you, the hope of glory! (Colossians 1:27) Jesus consecrated a new and living way for us through the flesh, so that Jesus could dwell in our hearts through faith and we, with all the saints, could be filled with all the fullness of God. (Hebrews 10:20; Ephesians 3:16-21) We can, by the power of the Holy Spirit, be conformed to the image of Jesus Christ. (Romans 8:29) What a future and a living hope we have! (Jeremiah 29:11)
In the Old Covenant the people of Israel could receive the forgiveness of sins through the sacrifices required by the law. The law was weak; it could only judge sin after it was committed. It was only a deterrent. It couldn’t deal with the “strong man” that dwelt inside the body, which is our own will – our and desires. Jesus entered the strong man’s house (the body) and overcame the strong man, and put him to death. (Mark 3:27; Luke 11:21-22)
"For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God did by sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, on account of sin: He condemned sin in the flesh, that the righteous requirement of the law [thou shalt not covet or lust] might be fulfilled in those who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit.” Romans 8:3-4.
Jesus was tempted in every point just as we, yet never sinned! (Hebrews 2:17-18; Hebrews 4:15) That is why, when He died, the grave could not hold Him. He had been perfected and was resurrected from the dead. He became the Author of eternal salvation to all who obey Him. (Hebrews 5:9) His life can be manifested in our flesh if we walk in His footsteps. (2 Corinthians 4:10-11, 1 Peter 2:21-22) We have awe can boldly go to in the time of temptation to get the help (power) we need to overcome and to fight the good fight of faith that leads to eternal life. (Hebrews 4:16) It is a lifelong process of by the Spirit, getting victory over conscious sin and, as we get light, putting to death our indwelling sin.
Think of the possibilities:
One who is plagued with anger, can become patient and peaceable.
One who is plagued by impure lusts, can come to purity.
One who seeks the honor of man, can begin to esteem others better than Himself, and become concerned with their welfare.
One who is strong and overbearing, can become gentle and meek.
One who is anxious and worried, can come to rest in God.
One who is stubborn by nature, can become easily entreated.
One who is proud and arrogant, can become meek and lowly in heart.
One who wants to be great, can become little in his own eyes, and a servant to all.
One who loves money and is stingy, can become a joyful giver.
One who is discontent and critical, can become filled with thankfulness.
“As His Divine Power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness through the knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue, by which have been given to us exceedingly great and precious promises, that through these, you may be partakers of the, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.” 2 Peter 1:3-4.
All because of the victorious life and resurrection of Jesus Christ, God’s Word can be lived and become flesh in us through faith and obedience in the power of the Holy Spirit! This is living hope! This gives us something to fight for, and gives real meaning to the greeting, “Happy Easter!”
Scripture taken from the New King James Version®, unless otherwise specified. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.