A Cry For Justice

Awakening the Evangelical Church to Domestic Violence and Abuse in its Midst

The Christian’s Real and Certain Hope: The New Creation

1 Peter 1:13-16, “Therefore, preparing your minds for action, and being sober-minded, set your hope fully on the grace that will be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ. (14) As obedient children, do not be conformed to the passions of your former ignorance, (15) but as he who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, (16) since it is written, “You shall be holy, for I am holy.””

We are all way too attached to this earth.  Every Christian will admit it.  We know we should be keeping the eyes of our minds set upon Christ where our real life is, not on things down here.  We are to set our hope fully on the grace that is coming when Christ comes for us.  Peter goes on in verse 17 to say, “conduct yourselves in fear during the time of your stay on earth.”  Our redemption at the resurrection is certain.  The Father would never have redeemed us at the cost of the precious blood of the unblemished Lamb if it were not so.

We are all working to deal with our issues in this life.  We are helping one another to understand abusers and how they have impacted our lives.  We are trying to help our children overcome these things as well.  We all want to heal and to grow in the Lord.  But….

What is our ultimate hope?  Where does our real life truly begin?  What should our thoughts and hopes be fixed upon?  Peter hints at it when he refers to our earthly lives as “the time of our stay on earth.”  Scripture even refers to our present bodies as “tents.” They are temporary and are destined to be changed into immortal buildings, the resurrection body.

Therefore, if we are going to help one another along, we must point to the finish line.  We cannot guarantee to anyone that their circumstances in this world are going to radically be changed for the better if they follow Christ.  This life is not like a Dickens novel in which, in the end, the pauper is found out to be heir of a fortune and all live happily ever after.  This life isn’t like that, but guess what we CAN promise everyone who places their faith and trust in Jesus Christ?  Ultimately, life DOES end like that:)  Because in Christ, it turns out that paupers like us, with no hope and without God in the world, have in fact become heirs.  Heirs to a fortune and a home and estate that literally, no human being could dream up if they tried.

If you would like some very, very practical help in becoming more heavenly minded, I would highly recommend Randy Alcorn’s book to you – Heaven [*Affiliate link].   If you are like most Christians, you are not really that excited to get to heaven.  Why?  Because your thoughts about it are wrong.  What if what you have been calling “heaven” (a term I now try to avoid because it conveys too much of the vapory in our minds), what if this heaven turned out to be Eden restored?  A pre-fall earth and heavens brought back to its original glory?  What if Christ’s redemption is more than just forgiving our sins so we don’t have to go to hell?  What if…. what if “heaven” is a place where we will have real bodies that never hurt, real rivers, trees, animals, homes, neighbors, libraries, and more?  What if death for the Christian is just a transition into what is far more real than what we have now?  And what if I asked you again now in light of these things …. are you ready to go there?

You get the point.  If heaven to you is a place that is probably pretty nice, but no way are you ready to go there right now, then you probably have some corrections to make in your thinking.  Be done with the angel wings, clouds, and harps.  You say that’s not exciting?  Of course it isn’t.  That is not the kind of world the Lord made you for in the first place.

* Amazon affiliate link — ACFJ  gets a small percentage if you purchase via this link

5 Comments

  1. Maree

    Thanks Jeff.

  2. Anonymous

    Oh, yes, that’s what keeps me going, although our pastor had to remind us the other week that we still have a mission to do here – to bring a taste of heaven to this place.

    Many of my survivor friends have no idea where they are going to live, how they are going to survive, but this one thing we do know – that when we get to the finish line, we’ll have eternal mansions built by Jesus, and no evil force can take that away. And in those secure homes, we’ll worship our Lord, we’ll fellowship with joy, remember how the Lord rescued us, reflect on our times of trials on this earth and how our faith, though challenged, became something Satan could never destroy. Oh, I can’t wait to see you guys there!

  3. Libraries! How exciting! And all eternity to look at their contents. And they don’t have restricted hours during the school holidays! And the librarians are happy and smiling people, not remote and stand-offish! And Paul and Peter and James and Moses and all the rest of the writers are available, so I can ask them “Now, what DID you mean by that phrase?” I can barely wait!

    • Jeff Crippen

      Yes, and this is no fantasy! We will continue to learn forever and ever. God is so infinite in His being that we will never fully comprehend Him. We are going to be amazed at how dull the most gifted human mind here on earth really was. And why wouldn’t there be libraries and books there? Perfect ones. So, yes, hanging at the library and being able to question the author no doubt will happen. Pretty good stuff!

  4. Anonymous

    I’ll definitely be hanging around a library – I could spend all eternity there!

    I recently thought about this very topic as I sat around a table, having afternoon tea with a group of domestic violence survivors. Their tales of past and current violence were heartbreaking, but we rejoiced at the hope that God would bring eventual justice, that evil would be snuffed out, and I couldn’t help but visualize us sitting around a heavenly table, having a feast and enjoying each other’s fellowship, praising God that our tribulations here on earth were nothing compared to the weight of eternal glory!

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