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A New Year of Hope


We have a New Year coming. There are only sixteen more days in 2016 now that I started on this article. It seems that we are always hoping for better days. And in December we continue to look to the future. We start to think about all the things that we did and assess them, especially between Christmas Day and New Year’s Day. This is especially true for those of us who write down our New Year’s resolutions. We want to see if we accomplished our goals for the year. It’s appropriate to look back and see if a goal was accomplished when the rime set for it is coming to an end.


I pray you did well with your resolutions if you made them. I also pray that 2017 will be a blessed year for you. And as a new year approaches our hope seems to get stronger. It is always this way. We hope for a good year for our favorite sports teams. And we hope for a good year for our investments. We also hope for a good year for our families. And you could keep going on and on.


The writer of Hebrews writes about hope.


Hebrews 6:16-20 People swear by someone greater than themselves, and the oath confirms what is said and puts an end to all argument. 17 Because God wanted to make the unchanging nature of his purpose very clear to the heirs of what was promised, he confirmed it with an oath. 18 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. 19 We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure. It enters the inner sanctuary behind the curtain, 20 where our forerunner, Jesus, has entered on our behalf. He has become a high priest forever, in the order of Melchizedek.


“We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure.” God has anchored us in the hope of eternal life in his kingdom. This means that as we hope we are unable to be moved back and forth, tossed on the sea of doubt with no hope of rescue. We need not doubt because we have already been saved! Our salvation comes with the death of Jesus. And if it ended there we would have no hope. But it did not. It ended with the risen Lord.


We now know that heaven is our destiny because of what God has done for us in Jesus Christ. And so, we have a hope for the future. And this hope is unlike our hope for ourselves in 2017. It is a hope that is anchored in the promise of God. God promised that the child of the woman would crush the head of Satan. He did on the cross. God promised that the descendants of Abraham would be as numerous as the sands of the seashore or even the stars of the sky. And he kept that promise with every baptized child being known as a child of Abraham. How, because Abraham believed and so does the baptized child.


Some have had a hard 2016. Others although it was not a great year, they did make it. Even so, we all hope for a better year. We all hope things will get better for us. They may or may not get better. And for some it is possible that it will get worse. Yet, we do have this, our hope in the promise of God is already true. We have truly been blessed with a great hope. May that hope carry you through the ups and downs you experience in 2017.


God bless your New Year,


Pastor Bob