Tim Keller | February 4, 2001
Everyone needs a special kind of hope, a ‘living hope’, not just specific groups of people. The Bible talks a lot about this living hope. It’s not something we just have, but something we need to actively apply in our lives. We need to understand what this living hope is, why it’s important, how we can get it, and how to use it.
1. Why do we need living hope?
The Bible tells us that through Jesus, we are “born again into a living hope”. This is especially important when we face tough times. Viktor Frankl, who lived through World War II, showed that a strong, enduring hope can help us find meaning in life, even in the worst situations. This kind of hope, which comes through Jesus, can help us deal with all of life’s difficulties.
2. How it operates in your life
Being a Christian means you can feel both great joy and deep sorrow. Most people think these feelings can’t exist together, but faith in Jesus changes this. Sorrow can actually make our joy and faith stronger, while joy can give us the strength to face sorrow with wisdom and kindness. This can make your heart both happier and sadder, but also stronger. It’s what makes being a Christian such a powerful and exciting journey.
3. How do we get it?
When we are reborn into a living hope through Jesus, we receive an inheritance that will never end and is kept safe in heaven. We don’t earn this inheritance by doing good things, but it is given to us freely because of Jesus’s death and resurrection. It will be given to us when Jesus returns, and it will bring us praise, glory, and honor. Knowing this can change how we think about wealth and how we handle tough times. It reminds us that our hope is in something far greater than anything in this world, and it shows us the difference between simply following a religion and truly believing in Jesus.
4. How do we activate it?
To use our living hope and cope with suffering, we need to love Jesus deeply, with the help of the Holy Spirit. Jesus suffered for us, but he did it with the joy of knowing he would be united with us forever. When we see Jesus as our shepherd, lover, brother, prince, and king, we can find a living hope that goes beyond wanting material things. This hope, which is all about being loved and changed by Jesus, is available to everyone who loves and believes in Him.
February Book Offer
In his book Counterfeit Gods, Tim Keller shows us how a proper understanding of the Bible reveals the truth about societal ideals and our own hearts — and that there is only one God who can wholly satisfy our cravings and fulfill our hopes.
February Book Offer