"An Unknown Future?"
TEXTS: Numbers 14:1-4; 1 John 3; 1 Peter 1; Eph. 2; Php. 1
1. The Bible is a book filled with warnings. And at the same time, it contains many hopeful promises from our Creator. The Lord has set life up to work this way: if you heed the warnings, then the promises will flow into your life.
2. The people of God find themselves on the brink of entering the Promised Land but are filled with fear and trepidation about this promise of God coming to fruition. They experience this to such a degree that they find themselves longing and calling for a return to Egypt. The fear of an unknown future can sometimes paralyze us with fear and cause us to lose focus concerning the promises God has made us.
3. It is tempting to look at the current cultural climate (and personal life circumstances) and be filled with doubt and fear. Our future can seem completely and totally unknown and this causes many questions to arise in our hearts and minds. But if you are united with Christ, your future is not unknown! God has made some amazing promises concerning the futures of His children. These future promises are meant to guide and shape our lives now.
4. 1 John 3 declares that we will be like Jesus and see Jesus for all He is. Just as Jesus stands victorious over every enemy that sin unleashed, so will we. The future isn’t unknown for Christians–we will see Jesus and be like Him.
5. Philippians 1:6 reveals that Jesus will complete the work that He has started in you. In other words, Jesus won’t quit. The future isn’t unknown for Christians–Jesus will keep shaping, guiding, and directing your heart and life!
6. 1 Peter 1:3-4 declares that we have a living hope and that an inheritance is awaiting us. Our living hope is sure and steadfast, not easily shaken by the ups and downs of life. Why? Because our hope rose from the dead! The future isn’t unknown for Christians–we will experience the presence of a living hope and have an inheritance beyond anything we can imagine being kept for us!
7. Ephesians 2:10 reveals that God has prepared good works for every believer to walk in as they journey through their earthly lives. The future isn’t unknown for Christians–God wants to and will use you to advance His Kingdom!
TALK TO EACH OTHER:
1. How does believing the right things about the future shape our present lives and decisions?
2. What does it mean that we will be "like Jesus" (1 John 3)?
3. Jesus promises to complete the work that He starts in us. Will this look and feel the same throughout our lives? Why or why not?
4. What does "living hope" make you think of? Discuss why this should be so encouraging and comforting to believers.
5. If possible, give a testimony concerning a time when you walked in a good work that God had prepared beforehand for you.
TALK TO GOD:
Pray as you feel led concerning the following areas:
- That we have the right view of the future and that it shapes our present lives
- That we would be filled with a living hope