The Blessed Hope
For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men, teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly in the present age, looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ. (Titus 2:11–13)
A pastor who was speaking on the topic of heaven asked his congregation, “How many of you would like to go to heaven tonight?”
Everyone in the congregation raised their hand, except for one little boy in the balcony.
Noticing the boy hadn’t raised his hand, the pastor repeated the question: “Again I ask you, how many of you would like to go to heaven tonight?”
Once more, every hand shot up, except the little boy’s. So the minister singled out the little guy and said, “Son, don’t you want to go to heaven?”
“Yeah, I want to go to heaven,” the little boy said. “But I thought you were getting up a load right now.”
We like the idea of going to heaven, but we are not necessarily in a rush to get there. Regardless of our age, we never know when life will end. And while death is one way we get to heaven, the other way is an event the Bible calls “the blessed hope.”
This is the rapture of the church, spoken of in Titus 2:13: “Looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ.”
If we really understand this blessed hope, this biblical teaching about the imminent return of Jesus Christ, then it should affect us in the way that we live. As 1 John 3:2–3 says, “It has not yet been revealed what we shall be, but we know that when He is revealed, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is. And everyone who has this hope in Him purifies himself, just as He is pure.”
So if you really believe this, then it should impact you in the way that you live. And most of all, it should give you hope.