hope, part 2

©2023 dan bulkley | ask@lifechurchco.com

section 1

Misplaced hope is what leads us to despair proverbs 13:12  psalm 73:2-14  and even to suicide ii samuel 17:23 . There are many different hopes that we put our faith in, but all of them prove to be more of a burden than a help isaiah 46:1 . Whether it is people jeremiah 17:5-6 , riches i timothy 6:17 , strength ecclesiastes 9:11 , cleverness isaiah 5:21, 47:10 , even magic and pills isaiah 47:9-15  revelation 18:23 : all of these will disappoint and leave us despairing because we are separated from the life of God ephesians 2:12, 4:18 .


proverbs 13:12 esv

Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a desire fulfilled is a tree of life.


psalm 73:2-14 esv

...as for me, my feet had almost stumbled, my steps had nearly slipped. For I was envious of the arrogant when I saw the prosperity of the wicked.

For they have no pangs until death; their bodies are fat and sleek. They are not in trouble as others are; they are not stricken like the rest of mankind. Therefore pride is their necklace; violence covers them as a garment.

Their eyes swell out through fatness; their hearts overflow with follies. They scoff and speak with malice; loftily they threaten oppression. They set their mouths against the heavens, and their tongue struts through the earth. Therefore his people turn back to them, and find no fault in them. And they say, "How can God know? Is there knowledge in the Most High?"

Behold, these are the wicked; always at ease, they increase in riches.

All in vain have I kept my heart clean and washed my hands in innocence. For all the day long I have been stricken and rebuked every morning.


ii samuel 17:23 esv

When Ahithophel saw that his counsel was not followed, he saddled his donkey and went off home to his own city. He set his house in order and hanged himself, and he died and was buried in the tomb of his father.


isaiah 46:1 esv

Bel bows down; Nebo stoops; their idols are on beasts and livestock; these things you carry are borne as burdens on weary beasts.


jeremiah 17:5-6 esv

Thus says the LORD: "Cursed is the man who trusts in man and makes flesh his strength, whose heart turns away from the LORD. He is like a shrub in the desert, and shall not see any good come. He shall dwell in the parched places of the wilderness, in an uninhabited salt land.


i timothy 6:17 esv

As for the rich in this present age, charge them not to be haughty, nor to set their hopes on the uncertainty of riches, but on God, Who richly provides us with everything to enjoy.


ecclesiastes 9:11 nlt

I have observed something else under the sun. The fastest runner doesn’t always win the race, and the strongest warrior doesn’t always win the battle. The wise sometimes go hungry, and the skillful are not necessarily wealthy. And those who are educated don’t always lead successful lives. It is all decided by chance, by being in the right place at the right time.

my notes:


isaiah 5:21, 47:10 nlt

What sorrow for those who are wise in their own eyes and think themselves so clever.

"You felt secure in your wickedness. ‘No one sees me,’ you said. But your ‘wisdom’ and ‘knowledge’ have led you astray, and you said, ‘I am the only one, and there is no other.’


isaiah 47:9-15 csb

These two things will happen to you suddenly, in one day: loss of children and widowhood. They will happen to you in their entirety, in spite of your many sorceries and the potency of your spells.

You were secure in your wickedness; you said, ‘No one sees me.’ Your wisdom and knowledge led you astray. You said to yourself, ‘I am, and there is no one else.’

But disaster will happen to you; you will not know how to avert it. And it will fall on you, but you will be unable to ward it off. Devastation will happen to you suddenly and unexpectedly.

So take your stand with your spells and your many sorceries, which you have wearied yourself with from your youth. Perhaps you will be able to succeed; perhaps you will inspire terror! You are worn out with your many consultations. So let the astrologers stand and save you— those who observe the stars, those who predict monthly what will happen to you.

Look, they are like stubble; fire burns them. They cannot rescue themselves from the power of the flame. This is not a coal for warming themselves, or a fire to sit beside! This is what they are to you— those who have wearied you and have traded with you from your youth— each wanders on his own way; no one can save you.

my notes:


revelation 18:23 esv

...the light of a lamp will shine in you no more, and the voice of bridegroom and bride will be heard in you no more, for your merchants were the great ones of the earth, and all nations were deceived by your sorcery.


ephesians 2:12, 4:18 esv

remember that you were at that time separated from Christ, alienated from the commonwealth of Israel and strangers to the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world.

They are darkened in their understanding, alienated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them, due to their hardness of heart.

my notes:

section 2

It eases our initial feelings when we take on a disease (outside my heart) model for our problems rather than seeing our response for what it is- a character/heart problem jeremiah 2:20-25 . Disease seems to exonerate us from any responsibility exodus 4:10  genesis 25:32  romans 9:19 , but that is a false hope exodus 4:11  genesis 25:34  isaiah 45:19  as it also entraps us within a lie from which there appears no escape isaiah 30:9-15 . While our own sin being the source of our heartaches offends our feelings and pride, through that deathly valley is a clear and liberating path from the downfall of sin i john 1:8-10  job 36:15  psalm 23:4  proverbs 19:18 .


jeremiah 2:20-25 csb

For long ago I broke your yoke; I tore off your chains. You insisted, "I will not serve!" On every high hill and under every green tree you lay down like a prostitute. I planted you, a choice vine from the very best seed. How then could you turn into a degenerate, foreign vine?

Even if you wash with lye and use a great amount of bleach, the stain of your iniquity is still in front of Me. This is the Lord GOD’s declaration.

How can you protest, "I am not defiled; I have not followed the Baals"? Look at your behavior in the valley; acknowledge what you have done. You are a swift young camel twisting and turning on her way, a wild donkey at home in the wilderness. She sniffs the wind in the heat of her desire. Who can control her passion? All who look for her will not become weary; they will find her in her mating season.

Keep your feet from going bare and your throat from thirst. But you say, "It’s hopeless; I love strangers, and I will continue to follow them."

my notes:


exodus 4:10 esv

But Moses said to the LORD, "Oh, my Lord, I am not eloquent, either in the past or since you have spoken to your servant, but I am slow of speech and of tongue."


genesis 25:32 csb

"Look," said Esau, "I’m about to die, so what good is a birthright to me?"


romans 9:19 nlt

Well then, you might say, "Why does God blame people for not responding? Haven’t they simply done what He makes them do?"


exodus 4:11 esv

Then the LORD said to him, "Who has made man’s mouth? Who makes him mute, or deaf, or seeing, or blind? Is it not I, the LORD?


genesis 25:34 esv

Then Jacob gave Esau bread and lentil stew, and he ate and drank and rose and went his way. Thus Esau despised his birthright.


isaiah 45:19 esv

I did not speak in secret, in a land of darkness; I did not say to the offspring of Jacob, ‘Seek Me in vain.’ I the LORD speak the truth; I declare what is right.

my notes:


isaiah 30:9-15 csb

They are a rebellious people, deceptive children, children who do not want to listen to the LORD’s instruction. They say to the seers, "Do not see," and to the prophets, "Do not prophesy the truth to us. Tell us flattering things. Prophesy illusions. Get out of the way! Leave the pathway. Rid us of the Holy One of Israel."

Therefore the Holy One of Israel says: "Because you have rejected this message and have trusted in oppression and deceit, and have depended on them, this iniquity of yours will be like a crumbling gap, a bulge in a high wall whose collapse will come in an instant — suddenly! Its collapse will be like the shattering of a potter’s jar, crushed to pieces, so that not even a fragment of pottery will be found among its shattered remains— no fragment large enough to take fire from a hearth or scoop water from a cistern."

For the Lord God, the Holy One of Israel, has said: "You will be delivered by returning and resting; your strength will lie in quiet confidence. But you are not willing."


i john 1:8-10 esv

If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His Word is not in us.


job 36:15 esv

He delivers the afflicted by their affliction and opens their ear by adversity.


psalm 23:4 esv

Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.


proverbs 19:18 niv84

Discipline your son, for in that there is hope; do not be a willing party to his death.

section 3

So, hope grows out of decaying sin hosea 2:15  joel 2:25  romans 6:21 , sin being repented of ii corinthians 7:10-11 , as the one with faith to repent is also the one who has growing peace luke 7:50  in coming to recognize the abundant forgiveness received which results in reciprocal love luke 7:42-43, 47 . This love is what makes Biblical hope that sure anticipation of God’s goodness towards His loved ones romans 8:1-6, 28-29 .


hosea 2:15 nlt

I will return her vineyards to her and transform the Valley of Trouble into a gateway of hope. She will give herself to Me there, as she did long ago when she was young, when I freed her from her captivity in Egypt.


joel 2:25 esv

I will restore to you the years that the swarming locust has eaten, the hopper, the destroyer, and the cutter, My great army, which I sent among you.


romans 6:21 csb

So what fruit was produced then from the things you are now ashamed of? The outcome of those things is death.


ii corinthians 7:10-11 nlt

For the kind of sorrow God wants us to experience leads us away from sin and results in salvation. There’s no regret for that kind of sorrow. But worldly sorrow, which lacks repentance, results in spiritual death.

Just see what this godly sorrow produced in you! Such earnestness, such concern to clear yourselves, such indignation, such alarm, such longing, such zeal, and such a readiness to punish wrong. You showed that you have done everything necessary to make things right.


luke 7:50 esv

And He said to the woman, "Your faith has saved you; go in peace."


luke 7:42-43, 47 csb

Since they could not pay it back, he graciously forgave them both. So, which of them will love him more?"

Simon answered, "I suppose the one he forgave more." "You have judged correctly," He told him.

Therefore I tell you, her many sins have been forgiven; that’s why she loved much. But the one who is forgiven little, loves little."


romans 8:1-6, 28-29 esv

There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death.

For God has done what the law, weakened by the flesh, could not do. By sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and for sin, He condemned sin in the flesh, in order that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.

For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit. For to set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace.

And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to His purpose. For those whom He foreknew He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, in order that He might be the firstborn among many brothers.