What is biblical hope? Is it the “wishing and hoping” kind of hope? And what about eternal security? Can a believer lose his salvation?
Job 5 & 6
Biblical Hope & Eternal Security
Verses 24-25, “For we were saved in this hope, but hope that is seen is not hope; for why does one still hope for what he sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, we eagerly wait for it with perseverance.”
Although it has not yet happened, biblical hope is a sure thing, because it is based on God’s promises.
Paul gives us some of the greatest examples of biblical hope in the remainder of this chapter! Verses 28-30:
28 And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose. 29 For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren. 30 Moreover whom He predestined, these He also called; whom He called, these He also justified; and whom He justified, these He also glorified.
In verse 28 He promises to work all things for good to those who love Him and are called according to His purpose. Notice it said all things! Is that thing you are going through part of the all things? Yes! (Notice, Paul didn’t say all things are good, but that God would use them for good.)
In verse 29 He says that God has predestined us to be like Christ. If we are truly saved, God is working in our lives to make us more like His Son, and sometimes, He uses tests and trials and difficult people to do that. Instead, of murmuring and complaining we need to see it as God’s hand molding and shaping us.
But God’s promises in this chapter don’t end there.
Then he says, “whom He called, these He also justified; and whom He justified, these He also glorified” (vs. 30). We won’t be glorified until we get to heaven. That means if He called us and justified us (made us right with Him), He will glorify us. We will not lose our salvation somewhere along the line! What a great promise of our eternal security!
If that’s not enough and to be sure we get it, Paul asks the question:
“Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?” (v. 36).
And then answers his own question in verses 38-39:
38 For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, 39 nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
If we are saved, if we have put our faith and trust in God alone by grace alone through faith alone, and have been adopted into His family, we won’t lose our salvation—not through death or life; through the work of angels or demons; by things in the present or things in the future; neither our greatest successes nor our worst failures can cause us to lose it; no created thing can, whether an object, a person, or Satan himself—nothing can separate us from the love of God through Jesus Christ our Lord. The only question is … have we made Him our Lord? Have we placed all our trust and confidence in the finished work of Jesus on the cross?
Once we have that confidence, that hope, firmly fixed in our hearts, we are free to obey Him, not out of fear, but out of a desire to return His love and please the One who loved us that much!
What a glorious salvation indeed!
Today’s Other Readings:
Job 5 & 6:
Suffering and Sin
In chapters 4 and 5 Eliphaz has implied there must be some sin in Job’s life to cause all this destruction to come on him. Job responds in chapter 6 by defending himself and saying he had not asked anything of his friends (Job 6.22-23), all he wanted was their kindness (Job 6.14), and while he defended himself, he did remain teachable, “Teach me, and I will be quiet; show me where I have been wrong” (Job 6.24).
While we understand there are times when our circumstances are consequences for our own choices, there are other times when God is pruning us or they are merely the result of living in a world devastated by the fall. Sometimes we suffer because God has some higher purpose in it all, just as He did in Job’s life.
John 9.1-3 says, “Now as Jesus passed by, He saw a man who was blind from birth. And His disciples asked Him, saying, ‘Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?’ (this was a common though incorrect assumption) Jesus answered, ‘Neither this man nor his parents sinned, but that the works of God should be revealed in him.’”
We, like Job’s friends, need to be careful with our judgments. We must be careful not to assume that tragedy in a believer’s life is a direct result of his or her own sin.
And while we should examine our hearts and lives when we experience difficulties to see if there is sin for which we need to repent, we ultimately need to trust the sovereign work and grace of God.
Worship … It’s Not about Us!
This psalm is called a song for the Sabbath Day. It is a psalm that reminds us that corporate worship—church— is not about us: the style of music we like, the right “worship experience,” whether the preacher is funny or not, whether the chairs are to our liking and a million other things we focus on. Worship is about God: who He is and what He has done. It is a time for us to praise Him, worship Him, and express our gratitude toward Him.
Our Motive for Working
This verse speaks about greed, whether we hoard and live selfishly or whether we try to use our resources to get more for ourselves.
It’s not that we shouldn’t do our best in our work or business or that it is sinful to be successful, but what is our motive? Our ultimate goal should be the glory of God not gathering wealth for ourselves.
Ephesians 4.28, “Let him who stole steal no longer, but rather let him labor, working with his hands what is good, that he may have something to give him who has need.”
Notice this is about more than just working. It is about working so that we can help others. The old sinful man was a taker. He may not have robbed banks, but he was out to get what he could from life and other people. The new man wants to glorify God by doing the best job possible, but he uses his finances and other resources to be a blessing.
Lord, thank You for the free gift of salvation. Let us not take it lightly. Instead, may we seek to bring You glory in all that we do, whether it’s with the material resources You’ve provided, the grace we extend to others, or how we worship You corporately and personally, in Jesus name, amen.
In the next few days, we’ll look at sins that can be contagious, how to pray the Scriptures, how to be a good comforter, and our impossible calling. Be sure to sign up so you won’t miss any of these upcoming posts.
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