“Now the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that ye may abound in hope, through the power of the Holy Ghost.”
Paul’s short benediction is overflowing with both profound theological truth and wonderful encouragement. First of all, God identifies Himself here as the God of hope. What a wonderful title for “the high and lofty One that inhabiteth eternity” (Isaiah 57:15)! In doing so, He reminds us that history is not random or chaotic, nor is it cyclic. Rather, history is moving toward a stupendous, preordained goal, namely, the Kingdom of God on the earth. From start to finish, the Bible is replete with references to the coming kingdom age when Jesus Christ will reign and rule over His covenant people Israel and by extension, over the entire created order Psalm 2; Isaiah 11:1-10). You and I have part to play in this coming kingdom also, thanks to the Lord’s gracious redemptive work that He accomplished for us. “For unto the angels hath he not put in subjection the world to come,” (Hebrews 2:5), rather, the kingdom will be placed under the care of redeemed, glorified people. The fifth chapter of the Book of Revelation contains the song we will all sing to the Lord Jesus one day: “Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof: for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation; And hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth” (Revelation 5:9-10). These wonderful kingdom promises are intended to give us joy and peace. These promises will not—in fact cannot– do this, however, unless they first fall into believing hearts. When this happens, thoughts concerning the return of Christ and of our glorification and the coming kingdom will no longer occupy the fringes of our thinking. On the contrary, our thoughts will abound with eager anticipation of the Lord’s coming in glory and the establishment of His righteous rule on the earth. None of us are free of problems in this present evil age (John 16:33; Galatians 1:4), but knowing the certainty of God’s promises, we have peace. Trusting God, we have joy. Through the power of the Holy Spirit, who authored the Bible, Who opened the Scriptures to us and Who opened our minds to the Scriptures (1 Corinthians 2:12) we abound in hope. Paul reminds us that this hope does not disappoint (Romans 5:5), for He who promised is faithful (Hebrews 10:23). The great apostle expressed every pastor’s hope for the flock entrusted to him.:“And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. Faithful is he that calleth you, who also will do it” (1 Thessalonians 5:23-24). May we be filled with joy and peace, our believing hearts abounding in hope.
God bless you dear saints,