How can we have hope in the knowledge of the soon return of Jesus Christ? Find out with hosts Tim Moore and Nathan Jones on the television program, Christ in Prophecy!
Air Date: July 8, 2023
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Tim Moore: Greetings in the name of Jesus our Blessed Hope, and welcome to Christ in Prophecy!
Nathan Jones: Do you believe that, for Christians, hope springs eternal? But tragically, the difficulties of this life and the rapid moral decay of our society have caused the hope of too many Christians to waver.
Tim Moore: That’s why in March of 2023, we gathered our Lamb & Lion Ministries evangelism team, including David Reagan, Nathan and myself, at Hikes Point Christian Church in Louisville, Kentucky, to hold the Hope Springs Eternal Bible Conference. We urged unbelievers to embrace our Blessed Hope and reminded Christians in Whom our hope truly lies in order that we may “run with endurance the race that is set before us.” We were also joined by two other dynamic speakers — Doug Cobb and Bob Russell.
Along with hundreds of other like-minded believers, we gathered both in-person and online, encouraging one another to “look for the blessed hope of the glorious appearing of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ.”
Nathan Jones: And, we want to share these hope-filled messages with you! We have reached the fourth episode of our special four-part “Christ in Prophecy” series featuring excerpts from our Hope Springs Eternal Bible Conference.
In the first episode, Dr. Reagan addressed the hope that was, proving that we cannot place our hope in human government. In the second episode, I addressed the hope that is — the Rapture of the Church. Doug Cobb followed in the third episode showing just how close we are to the Lord’s return as every nation is being reached with the Gospel in accordance with the Great Commission. And, Bob Russell shared a wonderful message applying lessons from Simeon’s hope in the first coming of the Messiah to the Church’s hope in His glorious return.
Tim Moore: Now we’ll finish this series with my message: “The Hope in What and Who is to Come,” Followed by a question answered by our panel: “Can those left behind still be saved?”
Part 1- Presentation by Tim Moore
Tim Moore: The contagion of despair is one that is consuming our society today. Walk outside. Go to the airport like I do, and watch people walk around and see them get bumped into or jostled and just anger and fear comes out. And that’s not just true for folks in, dare I say, our generations. It’s true for younger people as well.
Nathan mentioned this earlier, but it was recently announced that young people are experiencing an epidemic of discouragement, depression and, yes, despair. Instead of being infused with the optimism of the future, they have absorbed the angst of our society today and the confusion of our culture, and they find themselves adrift and hopeless. How is this manifest? Well, it’s especially critical right now among young women. One in three girls have considered suicide, up 60% from a decade ago. Almost 20% have experienced sexual violence in just the past year, up 20% in the past five years. And 14% of young women have been raped, up 27% in the last five years.
Across America, every racial and ethnic group indicates high and worsening levels of persistent sadness or hopelessness. And this problem is not just in the secular world. Pastors and Christian counselors would tell you it’s infecting people in the church as well. Which means we need to be encouraging each other with hope. Why are young people so desperate and despairing? Is it because they’re picking it up from the society? Is it in the air we breathe? The water we drink? Or is it the entertainment they consume or the lessons they learn in school? Or is it something all of us have contributed to? As too often we share our fears and our anxieties instead of our hope in what the future holds, and Who is coming.
The truth is, this is not the first time that America and the world has seen these kinds of alarming trends of disaffected young people groping in the dark, finding only emptiness and despair without the true living God. How many of you all saw the movie Jesus Revolution a few weeks ago? Wow, a lot. So you know the story. It came out in late February. It documents the Jesus Movement from the perspective of Greg Laurie, who you can see him with Kelsey Grammer, who didn’t play Greg, he played Chuck Smith. But it describes the angst that was descending on our society in the late 60s as we were seeing war protests, and racial division, political dithering and a new epidemic of drugs. You remember Timothy Leary, advised young people to turn on, tune in, and drop out. And by the millions, that’s exactly what they did. Only to find that path led to nihilism or utter despair.
And so the movie is unashamed in describing some of the people who emerge from that despair and recognize the only living hope is in Jesus Christ. One of them was Lonnie Frisbee. He was a hippie in his late teens, actually, when he met up with Chuck Smith, the pastor of a small, older church. And I love what is stated in the movie. The fellow on the left is, some of you will recognize the Jesus figure from “The Chosen.” Well, he was the hippie figure here. I was recently told he came to a place to give an interview, and people kept saying, “Jesus, Jesus” and he said “No, fake Jesus, fake Jesus, real Jesus, fake Jesus.” Let’s get this straight. But nevertheless, in the movie, Lonnie Frisbee asks Chuck Smith, or says to Chuck Smith, “There is an entire generation right now searching for God. The trouble is your people reject them.” And then Chuck Smith’s wife had a key insight when she said, “The lies are always loud. The truth is quiet and simple.”
Folks, Satan is screaming into our culture right now. His lies are being shouted from every medium in the secular world. But they are not only being shouted, they’re being tolerated, embraced and propagated by political, academic, business, and yes, even religious leaders like never before. Why? Because the lies are loud, and they clamor for attention. But his lies are also directed at us, at followers of Jesus Christ. Why? Because he wants to distract us, wear us down, and cause us to take our eyes off our Blessed Hope. Why did Peter take his eyes off Jesus when he was walking on the water? Because he saw the waves and the wind, and as soon as he took his eyes off the Lord, he began to sink. Well, let’s just say, even amongst Christians, sometimes we can feel worn down, overwhelmed, disgusted by what’s going on around us. And if we begin to feel that way, and especially if we begin to express some of those concerns, legitimate concerns, then we’re feeding into the discouragement of others, including our youth.
Do you today need reassurance that help is on the way? If you do, let me put my bottom line up front. Jesus is coming soon to rescue us from the wrath to come. Let me say it again, Jesus is coming soon. You say, “Well, they’ve expected Him to come for years.” You’re right. It’s sooner today than it was yesterday, or last year, or 100 years ago. Soon Jesus is coming to rescue us from the wrath to come.
Well, since I used to live in Missouri, don’t just tell me, show me. So with that in mind, let’s go to the Word of God, and I’ll give you another bottom line up front. I’ll take you to the end and then we’ll come backwards a little ways. Here’s another bottom line up front. The testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy. There is no blessed assurance, no confidence of deliverance from sin and death, no blessed hope without Jesus Christ. You know, the bumper sticker actually has it right. No Jesus, no peace. Know Jesus, know peace. Do you have peace today? Do you have peace which passes all understanding? Or are the wind and the waves tempting you to take your eyes off of Jesus, who is our Prince of Peace?
Well, with that in mind, let’s see what else the Word of God has to say about the hope that is within us. Yes, I go back to 1 Peter 3:15, which says, “We should always be ready to give a defense to anyone who asks us to give account,” for what? What are we to give an account for? The hope that is within us. And as one person has said, maybe you just need to tell your face about the hope, and the love, and the joy that’s deep down buried in your heart. All right. So if necessary, tell your face. Yes, we do have a hope that is within us.
Paul called himself a bond servant of God and an apostle of Jesus Christ for what purpose? “For the faith of those chosen of God and the knowledge of the truth, which is according to godliness.” What truth? “In the hope of eternal life,” which God who cannot lie promised long ago. Is this a hope like, boy, I hope I get a pony for my birthday. No, this is an assured hope. A guarantee. A promise of God that I’m looking forward to.
In the second chapter of his letter to Titus, Paul urged his co-laborer to speak the things which are fitting for sound doctrine. What things? Well, Nathan touched on them earlier. The role of older and younger men and women if you go back to Titus, chapter two. But he concluded by saying this, “The grace of God has appeared.” Jesus has already come, “bringing salvation to all men, instructing us to deny ungodliness and worldly desires, and to live sensibly, righteously and godly in the present age.” Doing what? “Looking for” and forward to “our Blessed Hope and the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior Christ Jesus.”
You know, Paul, this great apostle, lived in a day and age where there was great injustice and persecution of the Church. He had personally engaged in some of that injustice and persecution, but then as a follower of Christ, he never wavered in his faith-filled hope. Here’s how he opened his letter to the church at Thessalonica. He said, “We give thanks to God always for you, making mention of you in our prayers; constantly bearing in mind your work of faith and labor of love and steadfastness of hope in the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Presence of God, our God and Father.” The steadfastness of your hope? Do we have hope that is steadfast? What is he referring to? Well, going on to verses nine and ten, he talks about how you, the people believing in Thessalonica, turned to God from idols to serve a true and living God, to wait for His Son from Heaven, whom He raised from the dead, that is Jesus, who rescues us from the wrath to come. And that is the underlying theme throughout the Word of God.
I love this new song, some of you may not have heard it, it’s by a group called River Valley Worship, and they sing it beautifully. But it says, “Hope has a name. His name is Jesus. My Savior’s Cross has set the sinner free. Hope has a name. His name is Jesus. Oh, Christ, be praised, I have victory.” That’s it. Repeated again. Hope has a name. What’s its name? His name, Jesus Christ. Oh, how glorious.
And since that is our hope, the writer of Hebrews could boldly proclaim that we should do what? Encourage one another and all the more as you see the day drawing near. See, Paul, Peter, the writer of Hebrews, they all took for granted that we, the followers of Jesus Christ, would recognize, we would discern spiritually that we were living in the season of the Lord’s return so that we could encourage each other and all the more. So what are we supposed to do while we wait? Well, we are to be patient and faithful. James, the brother of Jesus, said, “Be patient. Strengthen your heart for the coming of the Lord is near.” Be patient. Strengthen your heart. That’s good advice. Wow, where have I heard that before? Well, I’ve heard it in 1 Peter 1:13, but here’s my problem. I can’t wait to have patience. Anybody feel that way? Lord, give me patience and hurry up about it. Yeah. I think sometimes the Lord’s trying to teach me, and perhaps you, a lesson.
Now, 1 Peter 1:13, Peter talked in the beginning about our faith in Christ as a living hope because of the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, as was mentioned earlier. But then he said, “Therefore, prepare your minds for action, keep sober in spirit, fix your hope completely on the grace to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ.” Did you get that? Peter says we should take action, and I actually love how the original language says it in Scripture. He says that we should gird up the loins of our mind. Boy, you talk about getting ready for some action. Gird up the loins of your mind and remain sober. You know, today, Nathan and I as we travel, Dr. Reagan, we see so many people unhinged, upheaved, distraught by all the things that are going on in the world. Peter says we should be sober. How do we do that? By again, keeping our gaze fixed on Jesus Christ and looking forward to the grace, the unmerited favor that will be brought to us at the revelation of Jesus Christ. Fix your hope completely on the grace to be brought to you at that revelation, at the Rapture.
Now, I know what some people say, because we get it a lot. Well, what about that guy who trusted in Christ and then died? Men like Rufus Sistrunk, who was on our board and passed away just prior to Christmas this last year. Men like Bill Smith, who was eager for the Lord’s coming and yet passed away, still waiting. I’ll just say this, we do not live, or die, or grieve our dearly departed as those who have no hope. Why? Because we know that to live is Christ and to die is gain. Do you actually believe that this morning? We say it, but do we believe it? Are we afraid of what’s coming, how bad it could be, and I might even die? Or do we believe what the Word of God has to say? Well, we are told in Scripture that those who die in Christ go to be with the Lord immediately. Indeed, while we are in this body, we groan, long to be clothed with our dwelling from heaven and preferring to be absent from the body and at home with the Lord, as Paul said in 2 Corinthians. So Rufus, and Bill Smith and countless other saints of God who are right now at home with the Lord, do you know what they’re doing? They’re still waiting for His return, but they already are in His presence. And yet they had the blessing of a life that was filled with joy, and hope ,as they long for His soon return.
Well, we know that God will bring with Him those who have fallen asleep in Christ Jesus, for when He comes, as Nathan talked about earlier, descending from heaven with a shout, the voice of the archangel and the trumpet of God, the dead and Christ will rise first to be reunited or united, rather, at last with their glorified bodies. Then we who are still alive and remain, will be caught up together with them to meet the Lord in the air, and so we shall always be with the Lord. Is this promise comforting to you or is it kind of a ho hum, meh, yeah, whatever. Eh, whatever happens, happens. No, it’s comforting and it should be. Which is why, again, we should be excited about this and comfort one another with these words.
You know, if you go to 2 Peter the apostle talks about the blessing of being present when Jesus was transfigured. He got to witness Jesus in His full glory, radiating. And yet the apostle says, “You,” talking about us who are reading his words, “have the prophetic word made even more sure than him being in the very presence of God to which you do well to pay attention as to a lamp shining in a dark place.” I’m always shocked when I hear about churches that just don’t want to talk about the prophetic Word of God. And I think, well, you’re missing a whole lot of bright light in a very dark age because it illuminates where we are and where we’re going. God revealed to Paul in 1 Corinthians 15:51-52 that “we will not all sleep, but we all will be changed. When, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, as we are regathered with those who have gone ahead and given glorified bodies.”
So what is the next event that we are waiting for? Well, I believe the next event that we’re looking forward to, as we’ve clearly talked about this morning, is the Rapture. I’m looking forward to it, but it is not the end of God’s plan for us. You see, after we are caught up to meet Jesus in the air; after we’ve been joined with Him as His bride and enjoy the Marriage Feast of the Lamb; after we have the honor of witnessing Jesus’ glorious Second Coming when He emerges from heaven riding on a white horse to descend back to Earth, coming in the same way that He departed; that He will ascend to the Mount of Olives, or excuse me, to the throne there on the Temple Mount, after setting foot on the Mount of Olives, going through that now-sealed Eastern Gate that some of you have actually been up close to. And there on the throne of His father, David, He will judge the nations and reign where He will separate the sheep and the goats. He will reign over a earth, repopulated by mortal believers who put their faith in Him during the Tribulation and persevered through that period of unimaginable horror. Then He will flood the earth with peace, righteousness and holiness, and we will reign with Him.
Can you imagine a world returned to the Eden-like state it was created to be in? A perfect world where Satan is truly bound, human lifetimes dramatically increased, and Israel becoming the preeminent nation on the earth. Which is why, even my little booklet, I’m looking forward to the reign of Jesus Christ, that Millennium, that 1,000 years that is spoken of 6 different times in Revelation chapter 20.
Well, so what’s this promise all about? Actually, it’s all about what’s promised to Jesus Christ. The Messiah will reign over all the Earth as a righteous judge. He will rule with fairness, but slay the wicked, and He will manifest His glory before the Earth. He will receive the praise and honor that was always due Him but denied at His First Coming. As God declared through the Prophet Isaiah in chapter 43, “I have sworn by myself, the word has gone out and will not turn back, that to me every knee will bow and every tongue will swear allegiance. They will say to me, ‘Only in the Lord are righteousness and strength.’ Men will come and all who are angry at Him will be put to shame. And in the Lord, all the offspring of Israel will glory.” That’s really what Jesus’ return is all about. But yet we get incredible blessings, even during the Rapture, during the Millennium.
So what’s in it for us? Well, we get to be given responsibility based on our faithfulness with the talents that the Lord’s poured into our lives right now. We will be priests, as Doug said of God and of Christ Jesus. We will dwell in the presence of God and the Lamb forever. And yet, as the old saying says, “But wait, there’s more” because after that millennial reign, Satan will be loosed. He’ll try to deceive the nations of the world, and Jesus Christ, in very brief fashion, will put an end to that rebellion and usher in the eternal state and bring about a New Heavens, a New Earth, and bring down from heaven the New Jerusalem that we will live in forever with our great God and Savior.
You know, this is a painting by one of our former trustees capturing the glory of the Rapture. But that’s just the beginning. It’s not the end. It’s the beginning of all God has in store for us in eternity to come. Does that spur your hopefulness? I hope so, because that’s why Paul, speaking of the Rapture, being the beginning of all that is to follow says, “Therefore, comfort one another with these words.” Encourage one another.
Well, Paul actually added to that, he said that we are not of night or of darkness. So “since we,” the believers and followers of Jesus Christ “are of day, let us be sober” —there’s that word again— “having put on faith, love, and” what else? “hope. For God has not destined us for wrath, but for obtaining salvation so that whether we are awake or asleep, we will live together with Him.” And as if to drive home the point, he said, “Therefore encourage and build one another up, just as you also are doing.”
Are you an encourager? Are you a conduit of that living water, that blessing? Or is your glass feeling half full and dwindling by the distractions that Satan is trying to convince you are happening all around you?
Part 2- Q&A- Can those left behind still be saved?
Tim Moore: The last question is: Will our children who are raised in the church and taught the Gospel, but who are living a worldly life, have a chance to be saved after the Rapture? And then as a build on that, and this is a burden for any parent or grandparent, but really it should be a burden for our neighbors and for people we just know from work. How can we have joy in heaven if one of our loved ones is in Hell? Bob.
Doug Cobb: Well I can say something about the last part of that. So, you know, there’s a promise in Scripture that God is going to wipe every tear from our eyes and that after that there will be no more crying. Well, the fact that we’re crying means that we have something to cry about. I think there’s a number of things that we might be crying about on that day. I think we’ll all see opportunities that we had in life to serve Him and earn rewards that we either missed or ignored. And so we’ll be weeping about that loss. Certainly one other thing we’ll be weeping about is loved ones who are not with us. But there’s something about this process of God wiping these tears from our eyes that erases the pain of that from us. Because it promises after that no more crying.
Dr. Reagan: What is the meaning of Isaiah 65:17, where it talks about this and it says, “Behold, I create new heavens and a new earth, and the former things shall not be remembered or come to mind.” Is God going to erase from our minds certain things?
Tim Moore: Bob.
Bob Russell: I think Doug had a good answer.
Tim Moore: And there you have it.
Doug Cobb: I only answer the last little bit of that. I hope those kids will have a chance. You know, I know so many of them, so many of my dear friends who are in that circumstance. And it’s heartbreaking. It feels like to me there’s a generational spirit of deception that is just sweeping across.
Bob Russell: That’s another prophecy of the end times. The Bible says in the last days because of the increase of the wickedness the love of many will grow cold. And so we’re seeing that happen.
Tim Moore: I will say this, I have a dear friend who was here today, I don’t know if she still is, who one time was burdened for a child, actually, children probably who are in this circumstance. And it drove her to a sense of despair for them and for their lives, their souls. And I finally broke through that discouragement by being very blunt and saying, who do you think you are? Which took her aback. I said, who do you think you are besides their mother? It is our burden and our responsibility to pray for those who are lost, to pour our hearts out before the Lord, to shed tears this side of heaven, and then it’s God’s job to convict their heart, to lay on their spirit, and to draw them to Himself. And we can’t go beyond what our responsibility is. And there I stop and I let God be God. And yes, do I have great burden for those I know right now who are lost. Yes. But I’m going to let God be God as I take seriously my responsibility to share the Gospel, to love them, not hate the person, hate the sin that is plaguing their lives, the deceit that they’re buying into, but then allow God to be God. I trust, Him, and not my own understanding or even my own powers of persuasion.
Nathan Jones: While we wish we had the time to show you every presentation in their entirety, you can watch our evangelists’ sermons from the Sermons page on our website at christinprophecy.org, the entire conference on our Christ in Prophecy YouTube and Rumble channels, and through our downloadable Lamb and Lion App.
Tim Moore: You can also get DVDs with all of these hope-filled messages to enjoy or share with your Sunday school or home Bible study. Just order the Conference DVD album by contacting us at the phone number or website below. This 3-disc set includes the full presentations by David Reagan, Doug Cobb, Bob Russell, Nathan, and me, along with a 52-minute Question & Answer session were we address difficult questions like these. For a gift of $25 or more, and that includes shipping, we’ll be delighted to send you a copy of the Hope Springs Eternal Bible Conference DVD.
Nathan Jones: And if you are already a Christian, we pray that we’ve helped rekindle your passion for the blessed hope of that glorious appearing of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ.
And for those of you who have yet to place your faith in Jesus Christ — He is coming soon. Are you ready? You become ready by trusting in Jesus as your Savior and Lord. If haven’t yet, you need to do so and right away! Jesus promised He could come at any moment, and you never know when you are going to die. This life is the only chance we are given to choose eternal life or death. Choose wisely and make today the day of your salvation.
Tim Moore: This is Tim Moore and Nathan Jones speaking for Lamb & Lion Ministries saying, “Look up, be watchful, for our eternal Blessed Hope is drawing near.”
End of Program