A Living Hope

by Terry Wane Benton

What is a “living hope?”

Peter says we have this living hope "through the resurrection of Jesus from the dead” (I Peter 1:3). Thus, the resurrection of Jesus forms the basis of hope. When Jesus returned from the grave, it brought a dead hope to life and made it a “living” hope. The resurrection of Jesus is how we know for sure that death is not the total end of us. There is life beyond the grave. If that had only been wishful thinking before, it is hope (confident expectation) now. Hope is alive because Jesus is alive. The only way to take our hope away is to prove that death is the final end of all, and now that Jesus predicted His death and resurrection in three days and then demonstrated His power over death, the issue is settled once and for all. Death is not the total end of humans. We never have grounds to think that death is the final end of humans because Jesus put that issue to rest once and for all.

The Jewish scriptures predicted it (Psalms 16; Isaiah 53), and Jesus fulfilled it. Jesus also predicted it and then demonstrated it was true. All the unbelieving Jewish rulers and Roman rulers had to do was keep the body in the tomb for three days, secure it there, and then the proof of the dead body would have settled the issue of whether the dead could come back to life. They tried very hard to secure that body in that tomb, but could not keep the living among the dead. They could not keep Jesus from appearing to many witnesses, over 500 brethren at once, and to His discouraged disciples more than once. Hope came to life when Jesus appeared alive again after His crucifixion. Hope had seemingly died when Jesus died on the cross, but hope became a “living” hope that changed the disciples and the world so much so that the impact of Jesus urged men to redo the calendar of timekeeping. It is calculated now in reference to “the Year of Our Lord” because Jesus was no myth and no mere ordinary man. He is the Lord of all the earth, and Jesus is the reason hope is alive with confident expectation. Unbelievers who refuse to hear the evidence of Jesus live in hopelessness, but those who know the truth (John 8:30-31) are set free from hopelessness and aimless living. They are given an “abundant life” full of living hope.

Have you heard and considered the evidence of Jesus’ resurrection?

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