John Hagee - The God of Hope
Hope is God's gift to the believer. David writes in Psalms 42:5, "Hope though in God". Say that with me. "Hope thou in God". Jeremiah writes, "For I know the plans I have for you," saith the Lord, "They are plans for good, plans to give you a future and a hope". The fact is that God Almighty put you on this earth with a specific challenge for you to do, something specific for you to accomplish, a specific purpose. You have a divine destiny that no one else on this planet can achieve but you. You are anointed with the favor of Almighty God to accomplish your impossible dream. The Bible, from Genesis to Revelation, is a book that reeks with the hope of God. Jesus Christ is presented in the Bible as our blessed hope. St. Paul presents Christ as the hope of glory. Hope generates enthusiasm. Hope generates excitement. Hope overcomes despair and discouragement. Hope will be there all the time, because God is with us all the time. Give him praise in the house.
Paul writes in Romans 12:12, "Be joyful in hope". The first recorded promise in the Bible is that the seed of the woman would crush the head of the serpent in the book of Genesis. That was a word of hope from God the Father to you. Satan is a defeated foe. The seed of the of the woman was Jesus Christ. At the cross, Jesus Christ, the seed of the woman, crushed the head of Satan on the cross of Calvary. Calvary was not a tie. Calvary was a crushing victory for the Kingdom of God. Satan is a defeated foe. He is a defeated foe. The Bible clearly says that Jesus went into the bowels of the earth. He introduced himself to the legions of hell, saying, "I am the mighty conqueror that has just come from the cross of Calvary. I have crushed Satan and his dominion from this point forward. From this day forward when my children come to the gates of hell, in the authority of Jesus' name, you obey them. You bow before them, because they have my authority, they have my power, and they are victorious in my name"! Give the Lord praise in the house.
You have awesome power. The last recorded promise of Jesus is in the Book of Revelation 22: "I am coming soon". Brother, if he was coming soon 2.000 years ago, if you listen closely you can hear the footsteps of Messiah walking across the clouds of heaven, getting ready to call the bride of Christ home. Our king is coming soon with power and great glory. Lift up your heads and rejoice. Stop watching the fake news that'll give you ulcers and keep you up all night. Start reading the glorious news that we are the bride of Christ victorious over the world, the flesh, and the devil. Give him praise in the house.
Hebrews 11:1, "Now faith is the substance of things hoped for and the evidence of things that are not seen". Take away hope, and life with all of its fascinating opportunities is reduced to a mere existence. Without hope, life becomes bleak, life becomes drab, it's joyless, it's a burden, it's a never-ending process of pain. People without hope sink into depression and to despair. Life has no meaning. The associated press carried the story of four teenagers who locked themselves in a car and committed suicide by carbon monoxide after writing a note on a brown paper bag to be buried together. Why would four young people living in an affluent neighborhood in the wealthiest nation in the world choose to kill themselves? Why is the suicide rate among America's teenagers skyrocketing? The answer is, they are losing hope for their future in these United States of America.
Let me tell you this: if you have no hope, your heart will break. You will stagger through life blinded by your own tears. You will walk a road where there is no joy, suffocated by the sound of your sobbing voice. Some of you here and millions of you watching by television, listening by radio are desperately searching for hope. I have this message from the Word of God for you today. There is hope for a brighter tomorrow. Dreams still come true. There is hope that is guaranteed by the 3.000 promises of God found in this book. Our hope is not wishful thinking. Our hope is alive. Our hope is real. Our hope is eternal, it is available, it's powerful, it will make you laugh again, it will make you sing again. I challenge you, get up from the paths of disappointment. Get up from despair and defeat. Try again. Hope thou in God! The victory is ours through Christ the Lord! Give him praise in the house!
What is the difference between hope and optimism? Plenty. Optimism hopes for the best without a guarantee. Optimism is no more than whistling in the dark. Christian hope is faith looking at the promises of God and knowing with absolute assurance that what God has written in this book concerning what he is willing to do as demonstrated by what he has done in the past can work for you and will work for you today. Let's talk about the final battle that every one of you are going to experience and every person watching this telecast is going to experience. And that last enemy as recorded in the Word of God is called death. Hebrews 9:27, "It is appointed unto man once to die, and then the judgment".
Get this statistic in your mind. One person out of every one person dies. No one gets out of life alive. That's a guarantee. What is your hope when you die? Those who are optimistic have a wish without a warrant. They're whistling in the dark. They hope for the best without assurance. Christian hope concerning death is a certainty based on the past performance of God, which is what? That would be the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Because Jesus Christ rose from the dead, you are going to rise from the dead. Because he became whole, you will be made whole. Jesus said, "I am the resurrection and the life. He that believeth in me shall never die". Your last breath here is your first breath there. Jesus said, "Because I live, you shall live also". Give him praise in the house of God.
The fact that you will live again is verified by Jesus when he was speaking to John on the Isle of Patmos. He said to John, "I am the first and the last. I am he who was dead, and I am he who is now alive forever more". Christians are the only people in the world who have an intelligent reason to look into the future and say, "The best is yet to be". The best is yet to be. Tomorrow is going to be a better day. Why? Because in God's tomorrow, we're going to a celebration that will never end. We're going to a city where roses never fade. We're going to a city where the word "Goodbye" has never been used. We're going to a city where tears have never been seen on the cheek of the righteous. We're going to an eternal celebration. When we've been there "Ten thousand years bright shining as the sun. We have no less days to sing God's praise than when we first begun".
We're going to a family reunion that will never end. Your fathers and your mothers are there. Your brothers, your sisters, your wives, your children are waiting for us just inside the Eastern gate. We're going to mansions that have been prepared by the architect of the ages for you. You're going to wear a crown of life, a dazzling white robe of righteousness. You're going to hear the heavenly angels sing the song of the redeemed. Jesus said, "In my father's house, were many mansions. If it were not so, I would have told you so. I'm going to prepare a place for you". Listen. "That where I am, there you may be also". We're going to wear that glorious robe and crown. We will sit down by the river of life with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. How do I know this? Because of the resurrection of Jesus Christ guarantees that. What God has done, God will do. He is our blessed hope. He is our blessed hope. Pray up, pack up, look up! We're going up in the twinkling of an eye! "Because he lives, we shall also live". We're not whistling in the dark.
Here's proof that our tomorrows are better than anything we have ever had on this earth. Atheists mock the Christian concept of hope, because they think hope is delusional as pie in the sky. Atheism has never dreamed a dream. Atheism has never lifted a burden. It has never solved a problem. It has only created the ACLU in America. Atheism has never healed a broken heart. It has never brought joy to a wounded soul. Atheists spend their lives fighting a God they don't believe exists. Think how dumb that is. How ignorant is that? Atheism is brain dead when it comes to hope. Atheists like to consider themselves as brilliant people. Let me help you with your psychological, intellectual profile from the pages of God's word. "The fool has said in his heart, 'there is no God'".
Agnostics oppose hope because they see it as escapism from reality. The story is told of an agnostic who traveled for thousands of miles to interview a great, distinguished Bible scholar. The butler ushered the agnostic into the study of the scholar where he was cordially greeted. The agnostic asked the scholar, "Doctor, I have come a long way to ask you one question. I observe that the walls of your library are filled with books from the ceiling to the floor, and I know that you yourself have written many books. You have traveled the world and have had conversations with the greatest minds in the nations. But tell me after all of these years of study and knowledge, what is the one thing that's really worth knowing"? And the great scholar's face flushed with emotion. He placed both of his hands over the hands of the agnostic, and he said, "My dear sir, out of all the things I have learned, there are two lessons in life worth really knowing. The first is that I am a great sinner, and the second is that Jesus Christ is a great Savior". And let me tell you, to be successful in your future, that's really all you need to know. In the knowledge of these two facts lies the source of all of our happiness and our joy.
Saint Paul writes in 1 Corinthians 1:21, listen to the statement, "The world through wisdom did not know God". They're so eager to find the answer in themselves, they cannot accept God's word. Solomon writes in Proverbs 1:7, "The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom". But understand God has been kicked out of our schools. The Bible has been kicked out of our schools. Atheism has been embraced. We're now teaching our children socialist and racial dialogue that's just nauseating. Men may know many things and not know the best things. Men may treasure rags and throw away treasure. A man can know everything there is to know about rocks and not know anything about the rock of ages. A man may know about the tides of the sea and his life resemble what Isaiah said, "The wicked are like the troubled sea that never rest and never know peace".
A man may know all about lights, the light of a million stars, the light of the sun, the light of the moon, and never know Jesus Christ who said, "I am the light of the world". "What shall it profit a man if he shall gain the whole world and lose his soul"? What shall it profit a man if he is a great architect and does not know the chief cornerstone, Jesus Christ? What shall it profit a man if he or she is a great baker, but does not know Jesus Christ who is the bread of life? What shall it profit a man if he is the world's greatest investor and he does not know Jesus Christ, the pearl of great price? What shall it profit a man if he's the world's greatest astronomer, and does not know the star of Bethlehem? What shall it profit a man if he's a great judge but does not know Jesus Christ who is the righteous judge? What shall it profit a man if he is a great scholar but does not know Jesus Christ who is in the incarnate word, who knows all things? What shall it profit a man if he's the wisest on earth and lives without hope?
Our hope is in the blessed hope, Jesus Christ. It is certain. It is unshakable. Our hope gives a song in the night. Our hope looks at the coming storm and shouts, "Hallelujah! The king is coming"! Hope sees the invisible. Hope sees the intangible. And hope believes the impossible. Hope looks disaster in the face and shouts, "Hope thou in God! Yet will I praise him, who is the glory and the lifter of my head"! Give him praise in the house of God.
Consider hope when you're surrounded by suffering. You know, it's a mystery to me how country western songs are so popular, when most of them are written about suffering. When you play a country western song backwards, this is what happens. You get your job back. You get your house back. You generally get your wife back. You get your truck back. And your dog comes home. And I like country western music, by the way. No one escapes suffering on this earth. But listen closely. Every person here and those watching by television across America and around the world will experience suffering so severe. You don't think that you can survive another day. Hope means you see the outcome that you want, and then you find a scripture to give you the answer to that outcome, because God's provision is in his promise.
Remember that word. God's provision is in his promise. When you find a promise in this book that says you can have it, you can lock down on it and know no matter how severe the storm, it's going to happen for you. You find that promise and hold onto that promise until the answer comes, until the storm is over, until you feel peace that surpasses understanding, until joy that is unspeakable and full of glory floods your soul. It will come. It will come. Give the Lord praise in the house.
I know that a number of you have recently gone through a time of suffering, and suffering causes the loss of hope. And those of you who are watching by television right now are going through a time of personal and emotional suffering. My family has suffered greatly from the dreaded disease of cancer. I hate cancer. My grandfather and father died with cancer. My mother was diagnosed with cancer when she was 69. We prayed for her. She lived another 30 years and died at 99. My wife, Diana, had cancer. My daughter, Tish, had cancer. We know something about suffering from sickness. But I want to tell you what cancer cannot do. I want to tell what any other disease cannot do. Sickness and disease cannot shatter the hope that we have in God. It cannot conquer the faith that's in your soul. It cannot destroy the peace of God in the midst of the storm. It cannot. It cannot. Sickness and disease cannot kill relationships. Sickness and disease cannot silence the courage that's in your soul. It cannot invade your soul and take you captive.
I have seen the righteous sing in the last hour of their life. I saw a teenage girl who was passing with cancer. And in the last seconds of her life, her face radiated, and she said, "Pastor, an angel of God is in this room"! And she stepped into eternity in the arms of God. Sickness and disease cannot steal eternal life. It cannot conquer the hope of the soul of a child of God. It cannot take the smile from your face or the song in your heart or the confidence that God gives you that you're going to survive this. My hope is in the Lord, and the anchor holds! It holds in the time of the storm! Give him in praise in the house.
The Bible says, "Greater is he that's within you than he that's within the world". "Nothing is impossible to those that believe". If you believe that one scripture, it will revolutionize your life. "Nothing is impossible to those that believe". "Why art thou cast down, o my soul," says the Bible. "Hope thou in God". "Yet will I praise him who is the glory and the lifter of my head". Let me merge two Bible concepts for those right now who are going through any kind of suffering. The concepts are hope that is written down in the promises of God, hope written down in the promises of God. In our prayer journal, I have asked you to do this. But we are commanded to do so in the Bible in Habakkuk 2:2, which says, "Write the vision down and make it plain, for the vision is for an appointed time. And though it tarries, wait for it, because it will surely come".
Therefore, I challenge you to take your prayer journal and write the Bible verse for hope that you have, and tape those messages to the refrigerator door because you see that 18 times a day. And when you pray that prayer journal, you're going to hear a voice from heaven saying, "I'm with you. We're going to get through this". The victory is ours through Christ the Lord. The anchor holds! Keep pressing on! Hope when I have failed so miserably. There's not a person in this auditorium including the preacher who has not, at one point in their life in some way or the other, failed. I have failed, and at times I have told God, "If I were you, I would fire me". You have failed. There's not one who has not failed and tasted the bitter herbs of failure. Success has a thousand fathers. Failure is forever an orphan. But failure is a good teacher. It's a good teacher. You don't ever do it again.
Some of you stopped living because you've parked by the poison stream of a great failure in your life. Maybe it was a marriage. Maybe it was a business deal. Maybe it was the betrayal of a dear friend, or a dream that became a nightmare that didn't work. There are untold millions who have made a wonderful start in the Christian life, but somehow along the way, they stumbled and fell. They gave up. They quit trying. They lost hope. Am I talking to you? Get up! Get up out of the dust of defeat! You can be victorious over your past! You can be victorious over the burdens you're facing! "If God be for you, who can be against you"? "Hope thou in God". The greatest tragedy in life is not to fall down. The greatest tragedy in life is staying down. The greatest disaster is not to fail, but it's to sit down by your failure, suck your thumb, and give up hope. Stop it! As long as you're willing to start living again, as long as you're willing to start loving again, start believing again, start achieving again, there is hope. "Hope thou in God". Give the Lord a shout of victory in the house. Glory to his name. Glory to his name. We bless you Lord. We bless you Lord.