Encouragements for our troubled times No. 42

COVID-19 Series | Date: 07 January 2021

The Elders and Deacons want to encourage the members and those who regularly meet with us through this weekly letter. If you have news which you would be happy to share with the fellowship or request for prayer, then please let us know.

A message from our Pastor

1 Peter 1:3

“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His abundant mercy has begotten us again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead. "

The Apostle Peter is writing to those whom he refers to as the pilgrims of the dispersion. They are the saints who have had to leave their homes and families, due to persecution, and move to far-flung places. They probably feel frightened, isolated and lonely; not knowing what will become of them. So, Peter writes to them to encourage them in their faith and to strengthen them in their resolve to stand for the Lord. He starts by reminding them of our living hope.

We have this living hope because the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ has been abundant in mercy towards us. We have no claim to a living hope in ourselves. We were born in sin and were the children of wrath, just like everyone else until we were saved in Christ. And this was not of our own doing, it was the gift of God; not of works or any merit in us. We were begotten of God purely because of His abundant mercy toward us. No this should be a great comfort to us because it means that our salvation and our living hope does not count on us but on our God’s mercy, which is abundant. We do not, and cannot, work for it or earn it, it is freely shown to us by our God.

We have been begotten to a living hope. This is the aim and purpose of our salvation. It is so that we will have that living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead. We were not saved to die and lose our salvation in the end. We were saved to live eternally. As Jesus promises us “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live. And whoever lives and believes in Me shall never die.” And we have this living hope in Jesus Christ because He kept His promise and He rose from the dead and is alive again. Our Saviour rose because He had finished the work of redemption for us. He rose from the dead because He is the resurrection and the life and by the same power will raise us up to life everlasting.

We have this living hope; not a dead hope but one that lives in Christ and therefore is an absolute certainty. Our hope is not in the things of this life, but in the things everlasting. All we have here is just for a moment but what we have in Christ can never be taken away from us. How this truth ought to encourage us and strengthen us.