The Sphere of Hope
A Sermon on Romans 8:24-25
For in this hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience. (ESV)
Suffering permeates this world. Christian or not, we are all asking why this tragedy, or why that suffering. In order to maintain a proper Christian joy in this hopeless world, says Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones, we must follow the Apostle Paul’s argument in Romans 8:18-25. We cannot be confused on the Christian’s hope, which is why he explicates the topic in great detail. He explains the difference between objective hope and subjective hope, and argues that the Apostle is interested in both. In other words, says Dr. Lloyd-Jones, a person is saved who has the grace of hope within him and a hope with respect to something outside himself. A man is saved in the sphere of hope as well as in the realm of hope. Moreover, we must remember the “tenses” of salvation – past, present, and future. When we do this we avoid the danger of having no assurance concerning our salvation as well as claiming too much of our salvation by saying we have reached full sanctification.The Christian position, Dr. Lloyd-Jones reminds us, is one where we confess this world is not our home. The reason we can say this with confidence is because we have been brought into the sphere of hope!
About Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones
Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones (1899-1981) was a Welsh evangelical minister who preached and taught in the Reformed tradition. His principal ministry was at Westminster Chapel, in central London, from 1939-1968, where he delivered multi-year expositions on books of the bible such as Romans, Ephesians and the Gospel of John. In addition to the MLJ Trust’s collection of 1,600 of these sermons in audio format, most of these great sermon series are available in book form (including a 14 volume collection of the Romans sermons), as are other series such as "Spiritual Depression", "Studies in the Sermon on the Mount" and "Great Biblical Doctrines". He is considered by many evangelical leaders today to be an authority on biblical truth and the sufficiency of Scripture.