The Anchor of Hope
By Apostle Andre Pelser, preached at Harvester Reformational Church, Cape Town, 02/10/2011
Every ship has an anchor. It is a device that moors a ship and holds it in place. Traditionally it is a double –hooked, iron object. It is something dependable that provides stability. Most anchors display the letter ‘E’ meaning ‘Elpis’ which means hope.
We often use it metaphorically when we speak about a solid person: for instance: ‘she was my anchor in the crisis’.
The anchor person during a news cast on TV holds the programme together, providing links between the TV studio and reporters based on the outside. In athletics it is the last person in a relay race or in a tug of war it is the perosn at the back. Climbers tie there ropes to the fixed pin in a rock face or ice.
We have many reasons why Hope is an Anchor to our souls.
- It is scriptural
- Faith is the substance of things hoped for
- Hope is the blue print of our faith
- Hope does not make you ashamed
- We have a blessed hope
Examples of Hope
- Abraham wanted to amount to something in life and leave something behind so he hoped against hope – in other words, when there seemed to be no hope left, he still anchored his hope in God.
- David was greatly persecuted, but he held onto the promises of the Word of God: My heart is fixed trusting in God (Ps 112)
- Paul faced a tormenting storm as a prisoner on a ship but carried on hoping that their lives would be saved because an angel told him so
Patterns of Hope
- Romans 5 : tribulation – endurance – character – hope
Without hope we become cynical through disappointments
Without hope our spiritual wounds attract demons to torment us. Without hope we loose our joy of living and merely exist. The pressure of life toss us around like a ship in a storm. David often reconsidered his ways and realised he was heading in the wrong direction. Then he ran back to God in prayer reminding himself of the promises of God’s Word.
When evil men and women, boys and girls try to drag you into sin and temptation, throw your anchor of hope into God’s promise to keep you and you will be kept safe in the harbour of God’s love.
Say Lord, I trust your pomises – they are my only hope
Your promises give me strength, they comfort me, refresh, revive, teach me good judgement, guide me, keep me from wandering off, make me follow the Shepherd of my soul, gives me peace of mind and keeps me from stumbling!
Proud people despise me because I obey your word, but I stand unmoved – i anchored in your love and in your Word! People tell lies about me, they make up stories, but I obey your Word. Others mock you and say it is old fashioned to read your Bible and to pray – but they don’t know that the Word of God gives you hope and that hope is an anchor when times get rough!
Hope says: remember the dream and you’ll live through the nightmare
Paganini gave a recital on his violin and three strings broke leaving one string to finish the recital on. He did it and became famous for it! Hope helps to change one’s attidude in unfavourable circumstances.
Hope allows your fruit to remain (Abraham & Sarah eventually had a son)
Hope is a confident expectation based on trust that is patient; keep on hoping and waiting until that which is hoped for becomes a reality.
Hope does not plan to fail. Hope speaks about what it will be like when it happens; not when it fails. Hope sets the scene for faith to have substance.
We serve a God of Hope: Romans 15;13 – now may the God of Hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing that you may abound with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.
As far as Hope is concerned our God is violently sufficient!
The Hebrew understanding: when you hope you cast your cares on someone or something – so that you can remain strong as you wait for your expectation to materialise.
When Abraham had no more hope, God reminded Abraham of God’s promise to him and it perked his spirit up again. Abraham was sitting at the entrance of his tent in the heat of the day in the fields of Mamre when God sent three angels to him and Sarah. (Gen 18:12). He recognised the divine encounter and ran to God and told Sarah to quickly bake new bread and went to the herdsman and told him to quickly take one of the best lambs and prepare a meal for the three men.
One of the three men was Jesus! He refers to Himself as ‘Lord’ when he speaks to Abraham in Genesis 18: ‘Is anything too difficult for the Lord?’
Look at Abraham’s urgency.
The divine encounter opened up a new fountain of hope in Abraham’s soul. He was no longer sitting in the heat of the day feeling dejected and alone: he knew this was the moment he was waiting for!
Today as you hear the voice of the Lord speaking to you, respond like Abraham did! The Lord is saying to you: ‘Is anything too difficult for the Lord?’
We can learn some lessons from Abraham’s response to God
- He ran and worshipped God in a meaningful way
- He received divine energy to break his physical lethargy
- He thought he was all alone in his quest to obey God when he saw new connections that birthed new hope and vision in his heart
The thing that makes our Hope come alive is the power of an endless life! Eternal life has eternal hope behind it. (Heb 6:19, 20)
The technology of Hope
- It is based on the power of an endless life (Heb 7:16)
- It is rooted in two unchangeable things: God’s promise and guarantee
- We enter our blessed hope ( Titus 2:13) through the veil that was torn – we enter that awesome place of the presence of God and touch the power of an endless life because we are a royal priesthood according to the order of Melchizedek, a higher order than the Aaronic order.
Abraham the father of our faith, wanted to break free from his barren existence. He desired to amount to something in this life. Although all physical evidence pointed to the contrary he and Sarah hoped in God for a son. He leaped into the future and received and impartation from God to fulfil god’s promse to him – contrary to all reasonable and natural expectations. His lively hope activated the prophetic word in hislife and expanded him and Sarah beyond their natural potetnial to give hisl lfie univeral and eternal consequences becomng the father of our faith!
Hope does not disappoint. You will not be disappointed if you hope.
Hope builds confidence (Heb 3:6) It is the means by which we come into God’s expected end for our lives. Hope brings eager enthusiasm to our endurance – a confident expectation! Through hope we access the powers of the world to come! We govern our circumstances through divine Hope.
Learn to convert anxious waiting for invisble realities into constant joy in believing! Hope takes our prayers confidently behind the veil into the Holy Presence of God.
Hope is a stabilizing force in the midst of earthly circumstances that speak of disorder (Heb 6:19)
God promised and gave an oath – that should settle all disputes that He will keep His Word to those who believe.
Hope is a quiet confidence – you anchor your hope in God’s promises, trusting when you cannot see.
Christ’s resurrection is the fountain head of our hope! (I Pet 1:3) Christ in you the hope of glory! We have this blessed hope that Christ is coming again and we will be glorified with him ( Tit 2:13) On Christ the solid rock I stand, all other ground is sinking sand!
The old Jewish system only gave a grim foretaste of things to come – it could never completely save those who lived under its rules, keeping laes, abstaining from certain foods, holding certain feasts, always sacrificing animals to be cleansed from their sin, but never finding victory over sin, always having a guilty conscience being reminded of their guilt and disobedience every time they meak a sacrifice for the blood fo gulles an dgoats cannot really take waway the sins of people – it is merely a covering that keeps the wart of god away for a while.
But things changed!
Jesus came into our sinful and wicked world and shed His blood for our sins and cleansed us once and for all to come into God’s presnece with no guilt and condemnation. When we worship God it is powerful, because we stand in His presence like a company of High Priests with the assurance that He accepts our spiritual worship! We experience relief from the oppression of sin and Satan! We walk in His holy presence without being struck dead! Because Jesus opened up a new and living way for us – by His blood!
When His body was torn for us, the thick curtain in the temple was torn from top to bottom! The veil that separated people from God is now open – we can all enjoy His holy presence without fear!
This is the blessed Hope we have within us! Hallelujah!
Hope makes us rejoice with great joy – unspeakable and full of glory!
We access this divine hope through grace and grace alone!