Text: 1 Peter 1:3-12, Romans 8:16-17
“Life is uncertain. Eat dessert first.” – Ernestine Ulmer
“In this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.” – Benjamin Franklin
They’re secular quotes, but there is a lot of truth to them. If you or I sat down to make a list of all of the sure bets in our lives – all the things that we absolutely, positively know will not change, it would likely be a short list. And it’s also likely that some of the things we listed aren’t as sure as we think they are.
In fact, if there’s one thing any one of our lives-to-date has taught us, it’s that life is fragile. Uncertain. Volatile.
Just about anything we do has some degree of risk to it. From our responsible efforts to plan for retirement, to starting the car in the morning, to assuming a positive pregnancy test promises a healthy newborn baby 9 months down the road – there’s no guarantee that any of those will have an expected, safe and sure outcome.
Maybe that’s why I love the language Peter uses in this passage so much. He knows life is uncertain (though I doubt he took that to mean that he should eat dessert first…). He talks with us about our inheritance (as believers, we are co-heirs with Christ according to Romans 8:16-17), using words like “imperishable,” “undefiled” and “unfading.”
It’s. Not. Going. Anywhere. But really.
This inheritance of “living hope” is more than wishful thinking. It’s different than hoping our team wins the championship or that the paint color we picked for the kitchen won’t dry too dark. Hope is a confident expectation of future blessing based on facts and promises. And that Peter refers to it as a “living hope” means that it is undying and permanent. It’s solid.
What is this future blessing we are confidently expecting? It’s salvation – complete and final future deliverance from sin and full enjoyment of eternal glory.
There’s no guarantee that our husbands will make it safely home from work or that our children will ever be truly safe at school. We can plan all we want for the future, but history tells us that even financial security has its great uncertainties. We can and should take precautions, but when it comes to certainty, our living hope is our shared inheritance with Christ – the salvation of our souls and the souls of those who believe with us.