Hope in God

I want the theme of my life and work to be HOPE!

Psalm 42 HOPE

I need to hope in God in every circumstance, easy or hard, good or bad.
On July 16, I was privileged to preach a sermon on Psalm 42 entitled "An Old Hope."
The preparation for the sermon was so helpful in my own life.  In preaching the sermon, I used "hope" over 70 times.  However, it is my prayer that, even more than repeating the word "hope," many times, those who hear the message are reminded and live in the hope that only Jesus Christ brings.

At the end of this sermon, I shared four prayers for the people at Trinity Baptist Church:

  • Kids and youth, I pray that your parents and others would live so that you see their hope in God and that God grows in you a more profound hope in Him.
  • Young adults, I pray that the older believers in this church live and act on Sundays and every day in such a way that they know they are loved by God and others and that you desire to ask them how to live life for God’s glory and the good of others.
  • Newer believers, I pray you will always remember the joy of your salvation and prayerfully seek opportunities to grow formally and even more so informally.
  • Older believers and long-time church members, I pray that you will remember and rejoice because the church has helped you grow in your love for God and continues to help you succeed.  While it may look a little or a lot different, pray that it will continue to focus on God and the hope he brings.

I am thankful I don't have to devise creative and innovative ways to inspire hope.

I need to be filled up with God's Word and share God's Word with others.

Romans 15:4 HOPE

When teaching and reading scripture, I need to remember that it was written to provide hope. At our Children's Ministry Leaders/Helpers Kickoff Meeting at Trinity Baptist Church, this is part of the devotional I shared in the beginning, Hope: Living Confidently In God by John Crotts.

God has provided many beautiful records of his strength and character in the Bible.  He has also provided many amazing promises that Christians can count on.  Paul wrote today's verse as he looked back at the Old Testament.  According to what Paul says in Romans, Bible stories are not just for Sunday school classes or Bible trivia games - they were written "for our instruction," so you might be encouraged.  Their goal is to refocus your hope by reminding you of the greatness of God.  
The stories in Scripture demonstrate that hope in God is solid, true, accurate, and effective.  Those who hope in God can be used by him to do impossible things.  If God was faithful to David and Moses, he would be loyal to you, too.  You have the exact same God, the God of the Bible.

If you are saved, remember, you have been saved
and you have 

As we live our lives, talk with people, and deal with good times and challenges,
hope in God.

As I teach, I provide oversight to Trinity's ministries to children, families, and adults,
I want to proclaim our hope is in Christ and help others live in this hope.

As we go through life,
proclaim that ultimate hope is in Christ and help others do the same.

God-focused Hope is what we need.
Not the hope of this world.


Who are the angels and the demons?

Pastor Brett's Sermons on this topic:

Short Statement (from The Essential Scriptures by Kevin Zuber):  

There can be little doubt that the Bible reveals the existence of angels.  Angels serve God as messengers of judgment, give Him praise, and reveal significant developments in the progress of God's program.  

Scripture also reveals the existence of Satan and demons.  Both oppose God and deceivers.

While there is not a specific statement in Trinity Baptist Church's doctrinal statement about angelology, it is a topic in most systematic theology books and there are things that need to be clarified as it relates to what they believe and conversations they might have with others. As a community of individuals interested in religious studies, we can delve deeper into this topic together.

HERE is the link to Dan Poling's notes (student and teacher) from Sunday's notes.

Remember, Look Up and Be Humble.

From Urban Legends of Theology

Eulogies that end with "We may have lost our father and friend, but heaven got another angel" are wrong.  They are vaguely comforting, but only if we do not think too hard.

Humans never become angels.  We are an entirely different class of being. God aspires to conform us "to the image of his Son so that he would be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters (Romans 8:29).  God saved us to be like Jesus.   

Chapters of Urban Legends of Theology by Michael Wittmer connected to this doctrine:   Grandpa Went to Heaven and Plays Outfield for the Angels.