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There is Hope in our Future

"There is hope in your future"

(Jeremiah 31:17)

November begins with accentuated commotion. The so-called "day of the deceased" marks moments of deep reflections concerning the future of the human being. One of the great problems of man is the uncertainty and insecurity with regard to his future. Not only concerning his physical existence, but also concerning eternity. All that man seeks to guarantee his earthly future is subject to unforeseeable contingencies and situations, which end in frustration. They are perishable and insecure values which suffer unexpected damages, but the facts of life escape his control.

When Jeremiah told the people "There is hope in your future", their situation in captivity was humiliating. Jeremiah made it clear that the hope for a blessed future didn't depend on a new political, social, economic, military, ideological or religious scheme. It was based on the merciful action of God! In what concerns eternity the situation is no different. The expectancy of eternity shows itself terribly uncertain, in spite of the great effort which is made in order to mystically uncover the future and to obtain assurance of it with the precarious resources of vain human religiosity!

We can understand, however, from the Word of God, that the hope for the future as to eternal life can only be reached in a secure and unequivocal way by faith in Jesus Christ. The future does not wear out at the end of physical life, so lamented on the "day of the deceased", but projects itself into eternity! The Lord Jesus stressed this truth when He said: "What profit is it to a man if he gains the whole world, and is himself destroyed or lost?" (Luke 9:25).In Luke 12:20, He illustrated in the parable He told the madness of the man who does not care for the eternal future, but only the earthly future. He then said of the foolish rich man: "'Fool! This night your soul will be required of you; then whose will those things be which you have provided?'".

Only Jesus Christ is the hope for the eternal future! The "day of the deceased" is another great opportunity for us to reflect as to our security concerning eternity. What does really await us after physical death, so certain as it is surprising, uncontrollable and bruising?

In John 14:1-3 the Lord Jesus defines hope for the eternal future in three important aspects. The background of the occasion was sadness and apprehension. The cross was getting closer and the Lord made His disciples conscious of the fact. This is why He said to them: "Let not your heart be troubled." Remarkable words which establish in unequivocal form the favourable hope for the future!

To start with He leads them to two precious thoughts:

  • "Do not be troubled" - We need not worry, because it is the Word of God which makes the foundation of this glorious hope in us; 
  • "Believe in Me" - That is where the indispensability of our Faith is established, for it is faith which makes us take possession of this precious truth and to be its beneficiaries.

Let us see three aspects of this blessed hope:

  1. A HOPE OF A PLACE OF RESIDENCE (v. 2) "I go to prepare a place for you." - Genesis 2:8 states: "The LORD God planted a garden eastward in Eden, and there He put the man whom He had formed." For man He created, God prepared beforehand a wonderful place, where he could live in full enjoyment of His communion. Verse 15 says: "Then the LORD God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden". Human sin made man lose this place. The Lord had to throw him out! (Gen. 3:23). But God didn't abandon the project of a residence for man. Christ came to assure the possession of a new residence for us (Luke 19:10). The glorious hope of our eternal RESIDENCE is in Him a privilege guaranteed to those who believe in Him! The tomb isn't the end! There is a place waiting for us: personal, perfect and permanent (1Thess.4:13).
  2. A HOPE OF JOURNEY (v. 3a) "I will come again and receive you to Myself" - a "journey" is promised to get us to the place of the future! And what a journey! It will be the most extraordinary "journey" which anyone has or ever will undertake! Paul says in 1 Thessalonians 4:17: "we … shall be caught … in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air". It will be a journey at a certain time, for its moment is set by the Lord (1Cor.15:52; 1Thes.4:16). It will be with the right people, for only those who sleep in the Lord will take part in it (1Thes.4:16; Rev.14:13), and with a destination clearly defined by the Lord. It isn't a journey without destination (Rev.22:14).
  3. A HOPE OF THE BEST COMPANY (v. 3b) "that where I am, there you may be also" - we shall not be alone! We shall be forever with the Lord! (1Thes.4:17). There we shall participate in the glorious communion with the Lord, in His protection, in His provision, and in his peace.

On the day of the dead let us remember that there is hope for our future!