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The Hope Of Glory

By Rabon Byrd

Hope is a very powerful thing! It is one of the greatest motivators of man. If you were to ask a group of people what motivated them to get out of bed every day, I would say that the greater number of them would give you an answer that is based upon a future hope or expectation.

God had given Israel a hope. He had given them an expectation that was for a future time. He declared it to them in ceremonies, feasts, offerings and by the prophets. Their lives were in expectation of something to come. So when THE TIME came and God finally spoke in His Son summing up in Him their hope (Heb. 1:1-2), most of them rejected Him. Why? Sadly, the expectation became more glorious to them than the One in whom their hope was fulfilled. Their hope became an end unto itself. He did not measure up to THEIR EXPECTATION.

Paul declared that the hope for which Israel waited is no longer a future and far distant anticipation for those who are born of the Spirit of God. For the expectation of Old Covenant Israel is realized in the New Covenant Israel in that He who is the fulness of their hope is in us.

Colossians 1:27

To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.

For what are we now waiting or hoping? The One in whom all the promises of God are Yes and Amen is NOW IN US. It is now not a matter of Him coming, but of His being revealed in us. That is the need of the church today. We need to behold Him and set our affection upon Him.

Romans 8:24

For we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for?

The hope that is seen is no longer hoped for. Why is the religious system still looking for a time or a day to come? They have not SEEN HIM! This hope is not seen with the natural eyes, but is seen when Christ is revealed by the Spirit of God and when He who is the fulness of all hope is seen He becomes unto our soul a tree of life (Proverbs 13:12). He becomes the very life of my soul. It is the seeing (the revealing) of Christ, that turns expectation into SUBSTANCE.

Hebrews 11:1

Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.

Now we have and live by the substance of what Israel hoped for and in Him we have the evidence of what they could not see because He lives in us. When? NOW!

Now let me make it clear that I am not saying that just realizing theologically that Christ is the fulfillment of Israel’s hope and promises is sufficient. I am saying that since we now know that that is so; let us set our hearts upon KNOWING HIM. Knowing that Israel’s expectation has now come and is in us is meaningless if we do not lay hold upon the PERSON who is the fullness of that hope.

That would be like waiting for weeks for a very important visitor. Not knowing the exact time of their coming, you continually ask people around if the expected visitor has gotten there yet. The more you wait the more anxious you become for their arrival and you continue to inquire with those in the house if the expected visitor has arrived. After several more hours of waiting, someone comes into the room and tells you that your expected visitor has arrived and instead of greeting and having fellowship with that guest, you decide to lock the room door and go to sleep.

Now, I realize that is a silly example, but no more so than for those of us who have heard that Christ is in us and who have heard that the hope of Israel is in us, not to set our affections upon knowing Him, learning Him and growing up into Him. What ceases the expectation: SEEING THE ONE EXPECTED! Hearing that He is in us, although wonderful, is not sufficient and must not be the end of our searching. We must see the One who is in us by the revealing of the Father, and grow in the knowledge of Him. Because we are not called to be declarers of a hope that is to come, but we are called to be an expression in the earth of the Substance Who is come.

The Letter to the Hebrews often uses the word “better” to explain the more glorious realities of the New Covenant compared to those of the Old Covenant. This word better is not used in the sense that I may need a better pair of shoes or a better car. In this context, the word means “superior, more excellent”. This is the exceedingly abundantly above, the much more of Salvation. He says we (the Church) have a better hope, a better covenant, better promises, a better resurrection, etc. What makes it better? What makes it abundantly above? What makes it much more? He is not saying that Israel had a multitude of future promises and now we have much better future promises. He is not saying that they had a good covenant, but we have a much better one because we do not have to kill animals and eat unleavened bread. He is saying that they are better, more excellent, abundantly above, and much more because Christ is now come as the substance and fulness of them and that very substance now dwells in His House, His Church, His Body; which Body we are.

Israel’s expectation, because it was not according to what God had truly said, but what they believed to be true became vain imaginations. It is so with the religious system today. The expectation of the religious system is not based upon God’s Word, but upon their beliefs and imaginations. When hope is taken beyond the true object of that hope that hope becomes foundationless and inevitably will become based upon false ideas and imaginations. The church world today would seemingly rather hold onto the fairy tale expectation of heaven than to turn their hearts and see the substance of heaven in the face of Jesus Christ. Most would rather hold to their dispensational theory of the end time instead of seeing the One who is the fulness of all prophecy and the end of all time. As I have already stated, we are not to declare a hope to come, but we, the Body of Christ, are called to make manifest the substance that is come.

This hope is not separated from us by dispensations or future happenings, but by the turning of our hearts (soul) to SEE HIM who is in us.

2 Corinthians 3:16-18

Nevertheless when it [the heart] shall turn to the Lord, the vail shall be taken away. Now the Lord is that Spirit: and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty. But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.

The only thing that will keep this expectation, which is Christ in us, from being an anticipated future event, is the turning of our hearts to behold Christ who is the excellent Glory. Then and only then will our souls be transformed and made at liberty to know the Great Salvation that He is made unto us. May we set our affections upon Jesus that we may be brought from the glory of waiting on His coming, to the excellent Glory Who is come, and is now in us. So we can declare as the Psalmist, “And now, Lord, what wait I for? my hope is IN THEE”. (Ps 39:7)

Scripture References:

Prov 13:12

Hope deferred maketh the heart sick: but when the desire cometh, it is a tree of life.

Jer 17:7-8

Blessed is the man that trusteth in the LORD, and whose hope the LORD is. For he shall be as a tree planted by the waters, and that spreadeth out her roots by the river, and shall not see when heat cometh, but her leaf shall be green; and shall not be careful in the year of drought, neither shall cease from yielding fruit.

Joel 3:16-17

The LORD also shall roar out of Zion, and utter his voice from Jerusalem; and the heavens and the earth shall shake: but the LORD will be the hope of his people, and the strength of the children of Israel. So shall ye know that I am the LORD your God dwelling in Zion, my holy mountain: then shall Jerusalem be holy, and there shall no strangers pass through her any more.

Rabon Byrd is a Bible Teacher and Research Editor at Covenant Ministries International Bible Research Center in Leslie, Arkansas. For more of his writings, audio and video teachings, please visit http://www.cmintl.org

Article Source: http://www.faithwriters.comCHRISTIAN WRITERSMAKE A WEBSITE

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