I am so excited to be sharing this new seven-week study with you. This winter has been a bit tough for me. I have been sick and down and out on several occasions. Even today as I write this, it is gloomy and I am getting over yet another bout of whatever is going around.
Times like these can get us down. They can leave us feeling like there is no hope for anything better and wondering when the promise of a tomorrow will come.
Maybe for you, it is not illness or gloomy weather, maybe it is a loss. Loss of a job, health, finances, a prodigal child. Whatever it is that leaves you feeling bleak and grabbing for any piece of encouragement, I am glad you are here.
What I love about this time of year is the hope for newness, growth, and the promise of a brighter tomorrow.
For the next seven-weeks we are going to thrive on the promise of a new day and new mercies, a new birth, a new hope, a new covenant, a new heart, and a newness that only comes from the hope we can have in the Lord Jesus through His death on the cross and resurrection. All of this bringing us into a new life with Him. Hallelujah!
This study was born out of this verse in 1 Peter 1:3 Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy, he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead. (NIV)
Take a moment to read all the hope we are given through Christ in this single verse. Sketch those words down on a piece of paper and carry them with you until they become your heart. When you begin to feel life do an overhaul on you, bring this out.
We are given great mercy. We are given a new birth. We have a living hope. The best part is it all stands on the firm foundation of a living God!
We can begin by giving God the praise for who He is and who He has made us through Him. He is the Father of our Lord. Our giver of life.
For God wanted them to know that the riches and glory of Christ are for you Gentiles, too. And this is the secret: Christ lives in you. This gives you assurance of sharing his glory. Colossians 1:27 (NLT)
And in Him you were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, having heard and believed the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation. Ephesians 1:3 (BSB)
If you are a believer in Christ, if you have submitted your life to Him, the Holy Spirit comes and make His dwelling in you. On that day, you are sealed with the promises of God! You were given an eternal inheritance as co-heir to Christ! Pretty Amazing!
1 Peter also says we were given mercy from God. Mercy means that we do not get what we deserve. You can read more here, but simply put because of our rebellion, we deserve death. God, however, is merciful and gives us the opportunity for life. Life in Him.
When Jesus spoke to Nicodemus in John 3, Nicodemus wanted to know what it would take to get into the Kingdom of God? Jesus told him he had to be born again. Not physically, but in the spirit.
This means that you have a new birth (1 Peter 1:3). Before this, you were dead in your sins (Ephesians 2:1). For dead people to have life, it needs to be given to them and this was given through the death and resurrection of Jesus.
Here is the amazing news. Your new life doesn’t just begin when you physically die. Remember in Ephesians 1 it says on the day of trusting Christ as Savior, you were sealed.
Further in Colossians, it says God wanted you to know you can have assurance when Christ comes to live in you, you are given the riches of His glory. You become His child (1 John 5:1) and He will care for you as such.
The most glorious part of this, I believe, 1 Peter tells us we have a living hope. Meaning here, now, and for eternity. Once we become alive in Christ, we have a living hope that we can only receive from Him.
Our life is given a new identity. We become alive in Christ.
You may be asking yourself, how we can have assurance? How do I know that this is set on a firm foundation?
The end of 1 Peter tells us we can have A Living Hope because Christ lives. Christ not only died on the cross for our sins, He was raised on the third day, according to the Scriptures. (1 Corinthians 15:4)
I used to believe the most important part of the story was Christ’s death on the cross. There He provided the opportunity for us to be forgiven by taking away that sins of the world.
While that is very true, it is also critical that He rose from the dead because in that we can have life. We do not have a god that is made by human hands or a god that his dead. He is a living and active God who conquered death.
Because He is alive, I too, can live!
That is Awesome news!
My life at times seems bleak, a bit hopeless, but I have to look at all of the facts with the perspective of who Christ is and who I am in Him! For that, I can only say, "Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ!"
Please continue to join me for this series on A Living Hope in Christ Jesus.
Before you go, please leave in the comments below your favorite verse that keeps you excited about who you are in Christ.
Have I been sealed with the Holy Spirit? If so, what evidence am I seeing in my life that would point to the day I became alive?
What can I do during the next 7 weeks to thrive on the promises of God and the present and future that He has for me? (List actual steps or goals)
If you have any questions for me feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I would love to continue this conversation or you can read more here, and hear what you think or answer any questions you may have.
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This week's featured friend is June Caedmon from inspiredbyjune.com. June is an author and blogger. She writes in her romantic fiction novels to glorify God and has a new book out called No Tomorrow. Stop by June site today and also see how she captures life through a lens. Thanks for joining us, June. I am so glad you are here!
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