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Pastor Brant Seacrist

January 28, 2018

"HOPE AND ITS SOURCES"

TEXT: Romans 5: 3-5 (Read verses 1-5)
READING:  James 1: 1-18

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SUBJ: The additional considerations of the benefits of being at peace with God and the further exercise of faith in dealing with this present world.

AIM: That we should grow in the ability to benefit from and grow in the grace of God of God wherein we stand.

INTR: Having brought the to the anchoring consideration of being reconciled to God and being granted access into all aspects of the grace of God, Paul would now take us to the application of these things in our present life.
1. We love the places where we get the idea that there is more to come and certainly this is such a text here. In fact, the first eleven verses of this chapter are an unfolding of blessedness.
2. There are some thoughts here that seem contrary to the normal way of thinking. But, we have revealed here the ability given us to turn these things to His glory and our good.
3. We will look first at the strange behavior of glorying in tribulation. Then we will look at the positive effect of such tribulation. And, then we will consider the matter of a hope that “maketh not ashamed.”

THESIS: We are taught in many ways that we are not of this world and thus are not to become attached to it. We are, however, appointed to live in it and to deepen our attachment to the Lord and the Hope of salvation which is Christ our Lord.

I. We glory in tribulations (v. 3)
1. The “not only so” that begins this verse constrains us to revisit that which is being enhanced.
1) We are justified by faith and are reminded that it is not the efficient cause of justification; faith is rather the means whereby we lay hold on it.
2) We would understand that the peace we have is with God as in reconciliation rather than mere tranquility.
3) And, we would remember that we have access into the grace of God and that it is by grace we stand and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.
2. It would seem that nothing else is needed and that is so, but grace is abundant in the provsions of the Lord and so
3. We are given tribulations along with the knowledge of why they come
1) By these we understand all sorts of difficulty including sickness, affliction, persecution, and anything resulting in worldly discomfort.
2) It seems almost self-abusing that one would be happy with difficulty but such is not the case; we have no joy in pain, but we can rejoice in what the experience produces.
4. It is there the evidence of our salvation and the deepening of our sense of our Lord’s presence is most evident and the scriptures verify this.
1) Thus, it is the proving that our faith is genuine in that it does not waver in the face of trials
2) It produces a lasting effect in that patience is learned (that is the idea of constancy steadfastness in clinging to the Lord).
3) The many ordeals of Paul led him to confess that when he was weak, then was he the strongest.
4) And we are reminded of Peter’s words: That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ: 1 Peter 1:7.

II. The connected blessings (v. 4)
1. These things follow the working of patience (a perfecting or maturing characteristic of saints).
2. The first is experience and may be rendered “trial” in the sense of proving.
1) Our lives are a chain of experiences in the Lord and those things remembered are most promising.
2) I just recently had a conversation with a person wherein we shared experiences that seemed impossible at the time but were often resolved in unlikely ways obviously seeing the Lord’s hand in them.
3) But, not all situations do resolve, but experiences, or having been tried cause us to maintain confidence in the Lord – we are not going to fire Him because He didn’t do it our way.
3. Even so, in either case we are able to confirm the endurance of true faith and our confidence in the Lord on whom it hangs.
4. The ultimate outcome in our experience is hope – the anticipation of the glorious end designed by our Lord in which we spend eternity in blissful repose with Him.

III. The result of hope in us (v. 5)
1. John Gill wrote that “the grace of hope is of such a nature, as that it never fails, deceives, or disappoints: it neither makes ashamed, nor have persons that have [it] any reason to be ashamed of it.”
2. After all Christ is our Hope!
3. Fanny Crosby wrote “Blessed Assurance Jesus is mine; O what a foretaste of glory divine.
1) She alluded to the fact of the love of God shed abroad in our hearts – not our love for Him or our ability to love – rather the sense of His love for us.
2) This the Holy Spirit does when we are born again and know that new life in Christ our Lord.
4. This is the confirmation of the work of Christ now come to fruition in our hearts.
1) We see His death, burial, and resurrection and believe it.
2) We have a living sense of the Love of God for us in the work of regeneration.
3) We then find true substance in the things hoped for all which are found in Christ Himself!