EPHESIANS 4:4-6: “There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called in one hope of your calling; 5 one Lord, one faith, one baptism; 6 one God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.”
OBSERVATION: Paul begins the Fourth Chapter of Ephesians by calling the church to love and unity. He reminds them of the important foundations of our faith. There is one body, one Spirit, one Lord, one faith, one baptism, and one God and Father of us all. He also reminds them to their “one” hope.
When we think of hope it is hard to focus on just one thing. How can there be just “one” hope? Hope has to do with expectation of things to come. Paul writes in Romans 8:24-25 – “For we were saved in this hope, but hope that is seen is not hope; for why does one still hope for what he sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, we eagerly wait for it with perseverance.” When I look over my life I am looking with expectation over so many things, both in The Lord, and in my personal life. Again, how can there be just “one” hope?
While we all have different expectations in our lives, and they continually change during the various stages of our lives. Yet, for the believer there remains “one” hope. When Paul talks about hope he has one thing always forefront in his mind. This one thing trumps all his earthly hopes. It is the hope that sustains him, the hope that propels him, the hope that he lives for. It is the hope of eternal life – the hope of the resurrection! Paul writes in I Corinthians 15:16-19 – “For if the dead do not rise, then Christ is not risen. And if Christ is not risen, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins! Then also those who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished. If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men the most pitiable.”
While there are earthly hopes, and these are not without importance, they all will change and fade away. When I was a small child I hoped for a specific toy, a mousetrap game. This was all I could think about, talk about, dream about. The day I got it my hopes were fulfilled, until I grew tired of the game. Then my hopes were fixed on the next thing. When I was a young man I hoped to find a bride. Now as a father I hope to see my daughter walk down the isle with a godly man. All of these hopes are good, but all of these hopes will change or fade away. The only hope that endures is the hope of eternal life! The hope of the resurrection. This is our “one” hope.
This “one” hope reminds us that there is nothing on this earth that can rob us of our inheritance in The Lord. Though the outward man is perishing, the inward man is being renewed by this “one” hope. The hope of eternal life lets me know that all I do for The Lord is not in vain. It assures me that I will see my loved ones who knew Christ again one day. Weeping, sorrow, pain, and trouble only last for a moment when compared to the blessed hope of eternal life in Christ Jesus. I can barely remember the first five years of my life. How much more will I forget the light afflictions I know face when I enter into this “one” hope and hear His words – “Well done thou good and faithful servant.”
Lord, thank you for this blessed “one” hope! May I walk in confidence as I face the uncertainties of life. May I hold my head up high in hope. May my heart be filled with praise. May I truly endeavor to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace with all those who hold this blessed hope in their hearts. In Jesus Name!