I will never forget the images of Christian Kurds/Arabs captured by Isis, lined up upon their knees. They were praying verbally to Yeshua to endure what was coming. Scripture reveals two important and related anchors in such senarios – Hope and Heaven’s attention. As Stephen was martyred he looked up, ” ‘Look,’ he said, ‘I see heaven open and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God.’ ” (Acts 7: 56). God has a particular interest in those who surrender their life in this world to Him. “Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his faithful servants.”(Psalm 116: 15). This is not limited to martyrs, but certainly includes them. No human can grasp the full meaning of God’s love for His children; only the offering of His one and only Son begins to convey the depth, majesty and perfection therein.
The other critical gift in times of crisis is Hope. “God did this so that, by two unchangeable things in which it is impossible for God to lie, we who have fled to take hold of the hope set before us may be greatly encouraged. We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure. It enters the inner sanctuary behind the curtain, where our forerunner, Jesus, has entered on our behalf. He has become a high priest forever, in the order of Melchizedek.” (Hebrews 6: 18-20). This hope serves as an anchor for the soul, a hook grounded and tethered to secure our position in Messiah. Hope goes beyond us it ranges ahead even to the Holy of Holy’s, the inner sanctuary behind the curtain where Yeshua resides, drawing us heavenward to Himself. Among the greatest are three, Faith, Hope, and Love. (1 Cor. 13: 13). Hope is underestimated in our society given the flood of trivial wishes, notions, fancies and dreams fueled by advertisers, conmen, and the Vanity Fair, but Hope in God is powerful.
“For in this hope we were saved. But hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what they already have? But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently.” (Romans 8: 24-25). Hope overcomes dissapointment and brings a current assurance that what was promised by God in the future is certain in any circumstance we may face. Lord Yeshua, give us your vision of what is yet to come that we may go forth in the power of your Holy Spirit. When distress and evil seems to overcome, let us renew of confidence in you through the hope you have anchored within us.