“Hope In His Promises” out of Genesis 3:1-15 & Romans 8:31-39 was preached on December 2nd, 2012 by Pastor Brett Baggett at the worship gathering of Ekklesia Muskogee. Week #1 in Ekklesia’s An Old Hope; A New Hope Advent sermon series.
The root of sin is disbelieving in God’s promises. We see this clearly in Genesis 3 when Adam and Eve disbelieved the promise of God to be all they needed. Disbelieving, they fell into sin. Adam & Eve’s biggest problem, as well as ours, is not that we don’t try hard enough to be good; the biggest problem is our unbelief in the promises of God. Before and after Salvation, our biggest need is to more fully believe and hope in the gospel.
Adam and Eve disbelieved the gospel and fell into sin, ruining all their race. But, is sin the end of the story? No. Sin is not the end of the story- Jesus is coming! As soon as mankind falls God starts preaching the gospel, promising that One would someday come and destroy the person and work of satan at great cost to himself (Genesis 3:15). Genesis 3:15 is the first promise to fallen man, and it is the promise of the gospel of Jesus.
We have reason to hope because “The devil has been sinning from the beginning. The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the works of the devil” (1 John 3:8). Jesus destroyed the works of satan by living for righteousness, dying for sin, and resurrecting for the salvation of all that would trust in him. We now have this promise of Jesus found in John 3:36, “Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life; whoever does not obey the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God remains on him” and this one found in John 7:38 “Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, ‘Out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.’” Furthermore, we are promised that “there is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus” (Romans 8:1), and that “nothing can separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 8:39). We can hope in his promises, because Jesus makes good on his promises. Jesus is coming again! “And the God of peace will soon crush satan under your feet.” O what grace!
1 Now the serpent was more crafty than any other beast of the field that the Lord God had made.
He said to the woman, “Did God actually say, ‘You shall not eat of any tree in the garden’?” 2 And the woman said to the serpent, “We may eat of the fruit of the trees in the garden, 3 but God said, ‘You shall not eat of the fruit of the tree that is in the midst of the garden, neither shall you touch it, lest you die.’” 4 But the serpent said to the woman, “You will not surely die. 5 For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” 6 So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate, and she also gave some to her husband who was with her, and he ate. 7 Then the eyes of both were opened, and they knew that they were naked. And they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves loincloths.
8 And they heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and the man and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God among the trees of the garden. 9 But the Lord God called to the man and said to him, “Where are you?” 10 And he said, “I heard the sound of you in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked, and I hid myself.” 11 He said, “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten of the tree of which I commanded you not to eat?” 12 The man said, “The woman whom you gave to be with me, she gave me fruit of the tree, and I ate.” 13 Then the Lord God said to the woman, “What is this that you have done?” The woman said, “The serpent deceived me, and I ate.”
14 The Lord God said to the serpent,
“Because you have done this,
cursed are you above all livestock
and above all beasts of the field;
on your belly you shall go,
and dust you shall eat
all the days of your life.
15 I will put enmity between you and the woman,
and between your offspring and her offspring;
he shall bruise your head,
and you shall bruise his heel.”
Romans 8:1 & 31-39
1 Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus… 31 What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? 32 He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things? 33 Who shall bring any charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies. 34 Who is to condemn? Christ Jesus is the one who died—more than that, who was raised—who is at the right hand of God, who indeed is interceding for us. 35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword? 36 As it is written,
“For your sake we are being killed all the day long;
we are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered.”
37 No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. 38 For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, 39 nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Q.1 Was there anything from Sunday’s sermon or the big idea that was new to you or had an affect on you? Did you hear anything that raised more questions in your mind?
Q.2 On Sunday, an illustration was used from The Dark Knight Rises (which came out on video today) about how it relates to the gospel story so clearly. What other stories do you know of that seem to not be able to help but preach the gospel to us who know Jesus? What does this tell us about the gospel and the storytellers themselves?
Q.3 What is the world’s typical view of hope? What are some things that the world typically hopes in? How is the Christian hope different than the typical hope that the world clings to (if any at all)?
Q.4 Why is it so hard to hope in the promises of Jesus? How can looking to the Old Testament promises that have been fulfilled help us hope in the future promises?
We have reason to hope- though we’re still in the flesh, though we still wage war against sin; though we still sin and at times disbelieve the gospel- we have reason to hope because sin is not the end of the story- Jesus is coming! And nothing can separate us from his love. Hope in his promises and “out of your heart will flow rivers of living water.” Glory to God! Amen.