Hope that Does Not Disappoint
Is the Movement just a dim memory? Has the passing
of time and the pressure to decide what youre going to do
with yourself for the rest of your life dulled you little by little?
Have you been forced into compromising until, at last, youre
like all the rest? Or are you someone who cant stand to
think about what you lost when the Movement failed, because at
one time the dream seemed so close at hand?
So now its too painful to remember
and there is no opiate strong enough to drive away the pain. Many
others are burned out, tired of trying, suspicious, cynical, hopeless.
Where did the Movement go? Why did it slip away? Is there a true
hope that will be realized in a life that will never disappoint
and never end?
So where are you today and what are you going to
do with yourself for the rest of your life? Where is the same
basic unfulfilled desire in you, suppressed behind the pile of
bureaucracy on your desk, while you now try to make it in the
system you detested a few short years before? "Idealistic,"
you say. But you say that only because you did not find what was
basic in you, what was real and genuine, what life was really
supposed to be. No, you didnt find it, but there is still
If the good news spoken about in the New Testament
of the Bible were true, if we human beings really could be washed
and cleansed of all the guilty stains buried deep in the recesses
of our souls, then we could be one! This hope is the only
genuine and living hope we have. All other hope has proven to
be false. Paul the Apostle said that if we truly came into the
real Messiah, we would find that hope. He sums up the life you
always wanted but never found in Ephesians 2:12. He speaks of
a tribal people with a hope that does not disappoint.
What if it were possible to become an entirely new
man, a new personality, a new you. At some point your utopia
busted up because through the superficial ground of good vibes
and acid highs the old man in you and his ways surfaced and the
real you came out.
In order to make any commune function the way the
original did, first there has to be a way to get rid of that old
man in you and put in the new man. You know what the old man is.
Its your corrupted human nature which is overwhelmingly
bent on satisfying itself, satisfying your old sensual desires
and fulfilling your own pleasure. Human nature is filled with
lusts which are fantasies that you constantly try to fulfill.
Lust is the sway toward the falseness in you. You will even deceive
others in order to fulfill those fantasies. From this corruption
in each of us comes the things that divide us and destroy our
lives greed, envy, jealousy, hatred, strife, ill will toward
others and ourselves, treachery, slander, arrogance, and unbridled
sensuality. This corrupted old man represents all mankind, the
entire human race, including the whole of Christianity today.
The new man, on the other hand, is the life or character
of Yahshua Himself,
created in justice and peace. This life of the spirit is
what makes us one with our Creator and with one another.
It is what enables us to regard others more highly than
ourselves and to lay down our life daily for others, being
gentle and patient and kind and forbearing with one another.
The spirit of Yahshua is the source of our passion. Through
Him, we guard and keep our harmony and oneness in the binding
power of peace. The life of this new man is a communal or
common life which includes all who have totally died by
giving up their old life and coming into Messiah. Together
we are becoming a commonwealth, a holy nation.
Just think! Here is the secret of living in a commune
with success, without ever busting up! It gives us the power to
lay aside falsehood and speak the truth to one another, knowing
that we truly belong to one another. In order for you to be a
part of this, you have to experience a new beginning. It starts
when you listen to a true, real preacher like the one in Ephesians
1:13 (not like those on TV or in church, but one sent to you from
a community of people bonded together forever in love and unity).
Such a preacher could bring you to the point where you could be
sealed in your spirit with the very Spirit of God who bonds you
together in unity and peace with all those in every Community
of Messiah. This Spirit gives you the power to overcome the forces
of deceit and falsehood that once ruled your life.
Messiah Himself said that whoever believes and is immersed
into His life will be saved. This is the meaning of baptism,
through which you die and are raised again into Messiahs
life. It does not mean to merely listen to the truth spoken
by one who is sent to you. It means combining what you hear
with obedience. Not only must you receive the message of
the one sent to you, but you must also share a death like
Messiahs. Through baptism you must give up your old
life completely with all its desires and ambitions. You
must put an end to your old life. Then, if you do this,
you can be rescued from this wicked self you detest that
made this world so wicked in the first place. The wages
of your old life in this corrupt world is death.
This is the only way it can happen. It must be life
for life. The life youve always hoped for, the one that
will not disappoint you, cannot be found any other way. Its
as simple as this: Messiah died for all of us so that all of us
who are alive will have the opportunity to live no longer for
ourselves, but to fulfill the purpose of him who died for our
sake and rose again from the dead. Therefore, if anyone is immersed
into the life of Messiah, he is a new creation; he has become
a brand new person inside. He is not the same anymore. The old
ways have passed away. The fresh, new life has begun.
After all your travels and all your trips and all
your illusions and disappointments, you must now see the Lamb
of God that takes away the sin of the world. His blood covers
our sin and causes us to know that we are forgiven. We
must all come to know we are forgiven, so that we can forgive
others, so that we can come together. But you cant get forgiven
by trying to forgive yourself through some therapy or psychology.
You can never analyze yourself into forgiveness. Forgiveness is
a gift that is based on a great price that was paid for it. Its
not cheap. Thats why its eternal. True forgiveness
Its not justice that one would do wrong to
his neighbor. But this injustice fills the earth; it fills every
neighborhood; it touches every life. There is a penalty for this
injustice and that penalty is death. Everyone who ever did harm
to his neighbor is guilty enough to die and must taste the horrible
separation and confinement of death to pay for his sins.
In old Israel, God provided a way for his people
to be forgiven. Whenever a man sinned, he could sacrifice a lamb,
a choice lamb, the best lamb from his flock, to atone for his
sin. When the man laid his hands on the lamb as it was being slain,
his guilt was transferred to the lamb, and the lambs blood
was then poured out as an offering a life for a life. The
lamb died so the man could be forgiven and go free.
This always pierced the heart of the sincere, because
they tenderly loved their flocks, especially their choicest lambs.
So, to kill the best lamb was a most painful experience. Even
though this sacrifice could never fully cleanse their conscience,
the God of Israel wanted his people to know the terrible cost
to undo the effect of sin on the earth. It would take something
more to finally set creation free from its curse.
At just the right time in history there was born an even
more costly and perfect Lamb than the very best of their
flocks. It was the human Lamb of God, our Creators
own Son. He was the very best of the flock of humanity.
In fact, He was the firstborn of a whole new race of unstained,
guilt-free human beings who could love one another from
a pure heart. He never did harm to his neighbor, but instead
was the ultimate example of how we should live. So this
Lamb, this perfect Lamb, was slain for all of us, for all
of our guilt. The faith that causes us to believe in him
also causes us to give up all we have, even our own sovereignty,
in baptism and receive his life. This is what transfers
forgiveness to us. It is life for life His life for
our life. We can be forgiven! This is how you can be free.
This is the good news and its meant for you.