I had a physical challenge recently that put me in the hospital. At this writing I am still tending to my needs and throughout my experience I kept coming back to a single thought - I am one day closer to full recovery.
My wife, Tanya, commented - "That's a good attitude and perspective to take on this, keep it up." So, I am. My slogan is filled with Hope. It also reminds me of Romans 8:23-24 - we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies. For in this hope we were saved. For in the saving of our souls for eternity at The Cross, our bodies were saved for redemption also. The manifestation of this redemption of our bodies is still future - "For in this hope we were saved". The next two verses follow-up nicely - "But hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what he already has? But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently."
Believers in Christ are one day closer to the return of Jesus. What a hope! Jesus said, "In my Father's house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am."
Another thing to look forward to is the believer Not going through the "great distress, unequaled from the beginning of the world until now--and never to be equaled again." (Matthew 24:21) The Holy Spirit, through Paul said Christ rescues the Believer "from the coming wrath" in 1 Thessalonians 1:10, not through it. Christ comes FOR His saints, IN THE AIR, before a time in history called The Tribulation Period -
- For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever. (1 Thessalonians 4:16-17)
These two phases of Christ's return and Jacob's Time of Trouble in between (7 year Tribulation Period) The Rapture and Christ's Glorious Appearing justify the hope Believers have for their future. The salvation message was already known at this point. What Christ saved people from - the deserving eternal punishment - does not come into play as "the coming wrath". No, the wrath to come is just how Matthew recorded Jesus saying it will be.......there will be great distress, unequaled from the beginning of the world until now--and never to be equaled again. If those days had not been cut short, no one would survive, but for the sake of the elect those days will be shortened. (Matthew 24:21-22) I am saved from that. What a hope for my spirit, body, and future. What a God! My plans are to see Him at any moment and every day that passes is One Day Closer!