The Urgency of Hope posted by John Sorensen on Jan 29, 2024
Is it the end of time? Well, I don’t know! Only God knows when that day is. But based on what we are seeing these days and what the Word of God says, I think it’s likely that we’re living in the end times. And if we are, there are a lot of people who are sadly not headed toward Heaven. I don’t know about you, but I’m not ok with that!
I hope we would say the same as Spurgeon…that if someone is going to hell, it would not be because they were unwarned or unprayed for. And it would not be without “our arms wrapped around their legs, begging them not to go.” We must not keep the hope of the Gospel to ourselves! There is an urgency to share today. If our time is limited, let our goal be to pray for every person in our community by name and then make an effort to share the Gospel with each and every one of them.
In these days we find ourselves in, there has never been a more vital time for hope. Everywhere we look, we see evil and sin permeating the culture. We see others go through challenging situations, and we even deal with those ourselves. The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention shares that the 11th leading cause of death in our country is suicide. In 2021, there were an estimated 1.7 million attempts. Now, we can look at these numbers and feel hopeless.
But here is the good news—God offers real hope. He does so through the nail-scarred hands of Jesus. When we put our trust firmly and only in Him, Jesus breathes life into our dead hearts and makes us new creations in Him. Our hope is not dependent upon our circumstances but is firmly planted in Christ alone.
At times, I think we can misunderstand hope. Some think it is merely optimism—choosing to see how circumstances could work for the best. But Biblical hope isn’t based on the circumstances that we find ourselves in. Many people of faith in the Old Testament faced difficult times, not knowing if things could ever get better. But they chose to place their hope in God anyway. Even the prophets lamented the injustice and evil they saw in the world, yet they still looked to God for hope. And it was not misplaced. From the beginning, when humankind fell to sin, God had a plan through Jesus. His death on the cross and resurrection from the dead bring the eternal hope of Heaven to all who would put their trust in Him alone. When we believe, we gain an everlasting hope that does not change.
How important is it for you to have hope in your life? In a study we did with Lifeway Research, 88 percent of people said having hope in their lives was either important or very important! 88 percent! But even without these numbers, we know how vital hope is. Take Michelle, for instance, who shared her testimony on www.whatsmystory.org. She wrote, “Trusting in myself brought me nothing but anxiety, depression, and a sense of doom. Trusting in what Jesus has done for me has brought me peace, hope, and a future that I feel joyful about. I pray that others will receive the gift of eternal life and join me and millions of others who are now in the family of God.”
That’s our heartbeat at Evangelism Explosion. Is that your prayer as well? Let’s not delay sharing the hope we have in Jesus with those around us. There is an urgency to take the hope we have in Jesus and tell others who need it! The Gospel changes lives. And through it, we receive everlasting hope.