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Its Power And Blessedness

Such then is "that blessed hope," blessed indeed, and an imminent hope.
It is a hope which if really held in the heart will shape the life and
conduct of the believer, and fill, we make bold to say, every need he
has in the wilderness down here.

1. That blessed hope will keep the person of the Lord Jesus Christ
constantly before the heart. If we really look for Him, wait for Him,
pray and long for His Coming, to see Him face to face, He will ever be
fresh before our hearts. This hope will keep us in closest touch and
fellowship with Him as nothing else. Oh! the blessedness of knowing we
shall see Him--see Him in all His glory! Each day ought to be begun
with this thought, "I may meet Him today!" Each day should have for
its last thought the blessed anticipation that the coming morning may
find us in His presence.

2. The blessed hope is a purifying hope. "He that has this hope set
upon Him purifieth himself even as He is pure" (1 John iii:3). It is
the power for a consecrated and separated life. He prayed in His
high-priestly prayer, "They are not of the world as I am not of the
world. Sanctify them through Thy Truth, Thy Word is truth" (John
xvii:16, 17). He has redeemed us from the curse, from the guilt of our
sins and from this present evil age. We are saints, no longer of this
world, though still in the world. With this comes the responsibility
to live soberly, righteously and godly in this present age. If a child
of God lives a worldly, carnal life it is a denial of the power of the
Gospel. If a believer in that blessed hope lives an unholy life it is
an evidence that he has never known in his heart what this hope is. It
is a hope which teaches us to walk in the light as He is in the light.
No believer who knows that blessed hope and waits for its fulfilment
can go in the ways of the world to enjoy its hollow pleasures. It is a
separating, purifying hope.

3. "That blessed hope" is furthermore a powerful incentive to service
for God. One of the charges brought against this most precious
doctrine is that it paralyses missionary work and all other activities.
The very opposite is the case. It stimulates true service for God as
nothing else does. Look at that great model servant, the Apostle Paul.
What a witness he gives of his untiring, whole hearted service and the
sufferings he endured in connection with it. Read 1 Thessalonians ii
and 2 Corinthians xi:24-33. He had seen the Lord in glory and he knew
that His glory belonged to him and that in the day of Christ he would
see Him and receive the reward from His hands. This was the secret of
his zeal for the Gospel; this gave him joy to endure. Like Moses he
"had respect unto the recompense of the reward." He knew before the
judgment seat of Christ he, and with him all the Saints, shall appear
to receive the reward for faithful service. He looked upon those for
whom he toiled, who were led to Christ by his testimony and nourished
by his ministry as his glory and joy in the coming presence of the
Lord. "For what is our hope, or joy, or crown of rejoicing? Are not
even ye in the presence of our Lord Jesus Christ at His Coming? For ye
are our glory and joy" (1 Thess. ii:19). The most successful
evangelists and missionaries have been and are believers in that
blessed hope. If we believe that He may come at any time, we shall
certainly lose no time to do the work into which His grace has called

4. It is a sustaining hope. It sustains in suffering and in sorrow.
David wrote: "The Lord will strengthen him upon the bed of languishing;
thou wilt make all his bed in his sickness" (Ps. xli:3). It is the
blessed hope of imminent glory which in sickness and pain gives
strength, "yea songs in the night" will come from our lips if that
blessed hope is ever first before our souls. And then it sustains the
believer in conflict and keeps him faithful in the days of declension
and apostasy.

5. It is a comforting hope. "Comfort one another with these words"
the apostle wrote after he gave the great message. It is the comfort
when our loved ones leave us. When we stand at the grave of the
departed ones, who fell asleep in the Lord, we know that the day is
coming when that grave opens and they come forth and we shall be united
with them "caught up together with them to meet the Lord in the air."

Next: Who Will Be Caught Up When The Lord Comes?

Previous: That Blessed Hope

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