by Terry J. Hallock

Are They Asking Us about Our Hope?
T. J. Hallock
I Peter 3:8-16
August 18, 2002

Peter proclaims that there is something so magnetic about the authentic Christian life that others will ask the reason for the hope they see in that life. When times are hard the authentic believer will not be crushed beneath the weight. Seeing that power of perseverance others will seek to know why it is so. When circumstances are difficult authentic followers of Christ will not sink into despair. Watching that resilient spirit others will hunger to know how it is possible. Even when they are persecuted for doing good authentic Christians will find joy in that suffering just as Jesus endured the cross and scorned its shame because of the joy set before Him. That power of hope will be so visible that those who are drowning will desperately seek to know the reason the believer possesses it.

We live in a world where the souls of so many around us are exploding with life and death questions. "Why am I here? What is my purpose? What is truth? What is love? Can I have peace? Why are there suffering, injustice, and tragic death? Are there answers? Is there any hope?" In Matthew 5 Jesus declared that His people would be the "salt of the earth" and the "light of the world". They would be filled with a power that preserved life, destroyed darkness, and illuminated the way to hope. As those who proclaim Jesus as our Savior is our saltiness so evident and our light so bright that the hurting and hopeless ask us how we got that way? Are they asking us about our hope?

On September 11, 2001 the power of evil exploded before our eyes. The fragility of life was hammered deep in to our spirits. For many of us September 11 raised soul-deep questions of life's meaning and end. It also planted deep-seated fear, heart-wrenching grief, and explosive anger in the heart of America. In the wake of that day has anyone come to us and asked the reason for the hope that is in us? If someone has then ...

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