Hope is one of the defining characteristics of the Christian life. It is not worldly wishful thinking but conviction that what God has promised will be fulfilled. Hope takes God at his Word. Christian hope is also future oriented. For example, in the eighth chapter of Romans, Paul explains, “Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience” (Rom. 8:24-25). Although we have not yet entered the heavenly realm, we know it exists, that it awaits us. Our Lord has promised us the kingdom, given us the guarantee of his Spirit, and is preparing us for glory.
Therefore, let us look not to the world’s enticements nor listen to the lies of those who live for them. Our Lord’s return is certain and imminent and is to serve as an encouragement to living faithfully for him. Until then, some will still obsess on when he will return, while others will live as if he never will.
Only those who have received grace from heaven can see the way. Jesus came from heaven in the authority of his Father, but the self-righteous would not submit. Only those who have been conquered by grace can submit to Christ.