TITLE: Hope Spoken
TEXT: Romans 10:13-17
THESIS: To Emphasize the urgency with which the
Gospel of Hope must be proclaimed to a sin-laden and sorrow-ridden
SONG: The Gospel Is For All
First, we must define biblical hope and distinguish
it from mere earthly hope.
Second, each Christian, each congregation of the Lord’s church,
each eldership, each preacher and each teacher must prayerfully
review his obligation to proclaim God’s Message of Hope.
Third, we must identify the target audience to whom we ought
to proclaim the Message of Hope.
Fourth, we must re-evaluate the available mediums of communicating
the divine Message of Hope (of course, with due consideration of biblical
I. Hope Defined.
A. The fundamental and underlying characteristic of the
word “hope” in both its verb and noun form is “1: to desire with expectation
of obtainment; 2: to expect with confidence” (Merriam
Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary. Springfield, MA: Merriam-Webster,
II. Each Christian shares some degree
of responsibility in proclaiming God’s Message of Hope.
B. Earthly hope is deficient and temporal at best--it won’t
The concept of “hope” may be applied to non-spiritual
matters pertaining to the physical universe and one’s existence therein.
Further, “hope” may be applied to spiritual matters
that transcend one’s physical surroundings.
Most people who entertain hope do so with regard to their
earthly existence only.
Christians frequently entertain hope both regarding
their earthly habitation and especially their spiritual citizenship
Unfortunately, vast numbers of the world’s population entertain
neither earthly hope nor spiritual hope.
Even more sad, many souls have an empty, false spiritual
hope that is not substantiated by God’s Word.
C. Biblical hope sustains God’s faithful children
in this life and provides a bright prospect of eternity in heaven.
The apostle Paul wrote: “If in this life only we have hope
in Christ, we are of all men most miserable” (1 Corinthians 15:19).
That sentiment is amplified for those whose hope pertains
solely to this physical existence and doesn’t even entertain a heavenly
pursuit (Luke 12:16-21).
Most of the world’s population exists under some sort of
great oppression that does not provide much prospect of hope in this life
(e.g., political, religious, social, racial, economical, educational, handicapped,
dysfunctional family, etc.).
The only pursuits of many are to eat, have clothes and shelter; often, they
will not have enough of any of it in this life.
They have no real hope. Many despair in this life and know only a
Even those who have real hope in this life regarding a measure
of affluence, it is fleeting because of the temporary nature of life as
well as the temporary duration of this world (James 4:14; 2 Peter 3:10-12).
The Greek word “elpizo” [el-pid’-zo] is translated
18 times as “trust” and 10 times as “hope.” It means “1a: in a religious
sense, to wait for salvation with joy and full confidence.” (Enhanced
Strong’s Lexicon. Oak Harbor, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc.,
The Greek word “elpis” [el-pece’] is translated
53 times as “hope.” It means “2a: in the Christian sense 2a1: joyful
and confident expectation of eternal salvation.” (Ibid.)
Biblical hope rests on the divine assurance of eternal
bliss after this life is concluded.
a) “. . . in hope of eternal life . . .” (Titus 1:2;
b) “. . . hope of his calling . . . his inheritance in
the saints” (Ephesians 1:18).
c) “For the hope which is laid up for you in heaven .
. .” (Colossians 1:5).
As such, then, biblical hope pertains to salvation.
a) “For we are saved by hope . . .” (Romans 8:24).
b) “. . . hope of salvation” (1 Thessalonians 5:8).
There is only one hope (Ephesians 4:4).
Our “God of Hope” is the source of the Christian’s hope (Romans
The Christian hope is Messianic in nature (1 Timothy 1:1;
Further, the biblical hope is effective because of the resurrection
of Jesus Christ.
a) Acts 23:6; 24:15.
b) “. . . a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus
Christ from the dead” (1 Peter 1:3).
Biblical hope is the chief object of written revelation.
a) The testament with which the former testament was
replaced provides great hope (2 Corinthians 3:11-12).
b) “. . . hope of the gospel . . .” (Colossians 1:23).
c) “For whatsoever things were written aforetime were
written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures
might have hope” (Romans 15:4).
Biblical hope was the subject of prophecy.
a) “. . . the hope of the promise made of God unto our
fathers . . . hope to come . . .” (Acts 26:6-7).
b) “. . . hope of Israel . . .” (Acts 28:20).
Biblical hope provides confidence in this life and the approaching
eternity, where faithful children of God will spend forever with God in
a) “. . . the hope set before us: Which hope we have
as an anchor of the soul . . .” (Hebrews 6:18-19).
b) Christians, therefore have “the full assurance of
hope unto the end” (Hebrews 6:11; 3:6; 1 Peter 1:13).
Consequently, biblical hope is the source of great rejoicing
(Romans 12:12; Hebrews 3:6).
It is biblical hope that animates the Christian: “.
. . the hope that is in you . . .” (1 Peter 3:15).
Therefore, unlike other souls, Christians can approach death
with every confidence and expectation of spending eternity in heaven with
God. “. . . the righteous hath hope in his death” (Proverbs 14:32).
For the child of God, then, life should not be one of despair,
despite the physical circumstances in which he finds himself. “Why
art thou cast down, O my soul? and why art thou disquieted within me? hope
in God: for I shall yet praise him, who is the health of my countenance,
and my God” (Psalm 43:5).
A. Preachers must carefully and faithfully proclaim
the good news of the Gospel.
III. Target Audience.
B. Elders bear an immense responsibility, which unfortunately,
often is not fully recognized by those who serve as elders.
2 Timothy 4:2, 5, “Preach the word; be instant in season,
out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine
. . . But watch thou in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of
an evangelist, make full proof of thy ministry.”
1 Timothy 4:16, “Take heed unto thyself, and unto the doctrine;
continue in them: for in doing this thou shalt both save thyself, and them
that hear thee.”
C. Each Christian must teach in some degree.
Hebrews 13:17, “Obey them that have the rule over you, and
submit yourselves: for they watch for your souls, as they that must give
account, that they may do it with joy, and not with grief: for that is
unprofitable for you.”
1 Timothy 3:2, “. . . apt to teach.”
Every Christian ought (has a moral obligation) to develop
his teaching skills (Hebrews 5:11-6:2).
The growth of the early church was not attributable solely
to the work of apostles and other preachers, but depended heavily on the
teaching done by other members of the church (Acts 8:1-4; 18:26).
A. It must seem strange to even need to consider to whom
the Gospel (with its message of hope) needs proclaimed.
IV. Contemporary Mediums of Communication.
B. Almighty God has selected the target audience!
Should we limit our presentation of the Gospel to the “unchurched”?
Is anyone really lost, or will an infinitely loving God save
Are our denominational neighbors and friends in need of hearing
the Gospel of Christ?
Should the church preach the Gospel to members of the church,
including faithful Christians?
Biblical unity and fellowship are limited to
those souls who have submitted to the divinely authored scheme of redemption
and are practicing simple, New Testament Christianity.
a) 2 John 9, “. . . He that abideth in the doctrine of
Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son.”
b) 1 John 1:3, “That which we have seen and heard declare
we unto you, that ye also may have fellowship with us: and truly our
fellowship is with the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ.”
The so-called “unchurched” as well as every other lost soul,
including denominational people need to hear the saving Gospel with its
exclusive Message of Hope.
Unfaithful Christians need to be rejuvenated with the Gospel
Even faithful Christians need to hear the Gospel over and
a) Romans 1:15, “So, as much as in me is, I am ready
to preach the gospel to you that are at Rome also.”
b) 1 Corinthians 4:17, “For this cause have I sent unto
you Timotheus, who is my beloved son, and faithful in the Lord, who shall
bring you into remembrance of my ways which be in Christ, as I teach every
where in every church.”
c) 1 Timothy 4:6, “If thou put the brethren in remembrance
of these things, thou shalt be a good minister of Jesus Christ, nourished
up in the words of faith and of good doctrine, whereunto thou hast attained.”
(2 Timothy 2:14).
d) 2 Peter 1:12-13, “Wherefore I will not be negligent
to put you always in remembrance of these things, though ye know them,
and be established in the present truth. Yea, I think it meet, as long
as I am in this tabernacle, to stir you up by putting you in remembrance.”
e) 2 Peter 3:1, “This second epistle, beloved, I now
write unto you; in both which I stir up your pure minds by way of remembrance.”
f) Jude 5, “I will therefore put you in remembrance,
though ye once knew this . . .”
A. Anciently, the Word of God was communicated from person
to person orally and in written form.
B. Throughout the years, our Lord’s church has employed a
variety of these methods in several forms.
Preaching is the formal presentation of the Gospel message
Teaching is the informal presentation of the God’s Word (Acts
Of course, the committing of God’s Word to writing gave us
both testaments (2 Timothy 3:16-17; 2 Thessalonians 3:17).
C. Contemporary evangelism.
Preaching: pulpit messages, lectureships, debates.
Teaching: Bible classes, VBS, workshops, seminars,
schools of preaching, church camp.
Writing: BCC, Gospel journals, Bible class material,
religious books, mass mailing.
D. The internet is a recently new medium of communication
that should not be overlooked or underestimated.
No one medium of communication is superior to any other medium
Each medium of communication has its strengths and weaknesses.
One or more mediums of communication should be utilized to
the extent that they are useful in a given locality and financially feasible.
It can employ preaching, teaching, oral presentations, colorful
illustrations and written messages on demand at the convenience of the
The internet is high tech and yet cost efficient.
The potential audience runs in the millions and spans the
You and I must explain to the world the crucial distinction
between biblical hope and earthly hope.
a) The strength of biblical hope is the promise of a
b) The efficiency of the Christian hope depends on the
Messiah, his resurrection and his promise to return for us.
c) The confidence of hope is salvation from past sins
and the prospect of eternal redemption.
You and I must realize that we alone have the responsibility
to bring God’s Message of Hope to a lost and dying world; no one
else can do it!
a) For many in this world, they can have no hope in physical
matters; their lot in life may never improve.
b) However, we can offer them real and enduring hope
despite their physical circumstances.
c) These are the souls most likely to obey the Gospel
(e.g., India, Russian, Africa, the poor, etc.)
You and I must accept the fact that all souls need
to hear the Gospel’s Message of Hope, even our religious neighbors.
You and I must take advantage of as many different, valid
mediums of communication as possible to get God’s message out to the world.
Brethren, let’s go to heaven together--and take as many
souls with us as possible. Tell someone
about God’s Message of Hope today!