Life Bible Fellowship Church, our Lead Pastor Gary Keith preached on Revelation 21:1-5. His key question was, "Where is our true hope?"
It was a great message and very timely, since sometime tomorrow night we should know who will be our president for the next four years. A lot of people's hopes are riding on this election. And a lot of the hope manifests itself in panic if the other guy wins.
If we believe the candidates, we seem doomed either way. Governor Romney tells us that if the President is re-elected, then we will continue on this historically slow path to economic recovery. President Obama tells us that if Governor Romney is elected, we will go back to the economic policies that got us into this mess in the first place.
In essence, both candidates are saying this: The other candidate will keep us from the wonders that await us, and I can lead us there!
If we believe the candidates, then we believe that they can bring us money, health, safety, and freedom. If a person is truly able to bring you money, health, safety, and freedom, then it might be appropriate for you to consider worshiping him. I am not trying to be sarcastic. That would be an amazing feat! That person would probably be worthy of some pretty heavy devotion if he could accomplish all of those things.
The fact is, no person can guarantee that we will have wealth and financial security. At any point we could have a personal or national economic collapse. We could get fired, have investments go south, or get robbed. No person can guarantee our health and safety. We will all ultimately get sick and die, and as secure as we can become, evil people can always find ways to get into airplanes and movie theaters and cause pain. And no one is strong enough to guarantee our freedom. Stronger nations than ours have fallen. We are no immune.
Ultimately, I still think that Donald Miller put it well when he said, "The truth is, we can make things a little better or a little worse, but utopia doesn't hang in the balance of our vote or of what products we buy." Neither of these candidates is going to save the world. Neither of them is going to fulfill our hopes.
The good news is that the Bible tells us that our hopes will be fulfilled at some point. Revelation 21:3-5 says, "And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, 'Look! God's dwelling place is now among the people, and he will dwell with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away." He who was seated on the throne said, 'I am making everything new!'"
God himself will be with his people. It will be God who provides an end to fear by removing death. It will be God who provides an end to pain and suffering and grief. And at the end of the passage he makes it clear that he, and he alone, is the one who makes everything new.
After this election, some things might get better. Some things might get worse. But utopia does not hang in the balance. Thank God! Our problems will continue, but our ultimate hope will still be just as secure as when it was first promised.
There is only one who will make all things new. He alone deserves our worship and attention.