Our Only Sure Guarantee
Our Only Sure Guarantee
In an age of obvious disappointments and dashed hopes, the above caption seems a bit presumptuous or trite to say the least. Is there such a thing as a sure and certain guarantee? Is there something or someone whom we can trust unconditionally? Given the collapse of insurance companies, job reduction and loss, and an apparent drawn-out recession, who can we really trust? The picture of the current situation is dismal and bleak. Despair looms large across the landscape of our country. What can I put my trust in? After all, how many times have you been given the promise of a job, a loan, or the prospect of a lasting friendship or marriage only to have your hope dashed and crushed?
In this article I proffer a surety or guarantee that will not fail. Of course no one does that, and neither do I by and of myself. However, Christ, who is God who made us, has the authority to make such an offer or a reliable and certain declaration and that He does. What is it? How can I know it? Where can I find it? What is in it for me?
Christ's Resurrection Offers Hope
In the well known passage of John14:1-3, Jesus makes a promise to return to earth for the human family. That includes everyone, for John 3:16 says, "God so loved the world." However, the fulfillment of that promise is future, but we live in the now. We need help this instance. We need assurance this very moment, for bills are to be paid, unemployment exists, injustice and abuse are also apparent, and foreclosure is evident. Apart from these concerns is the struggle of wanting to do right and avoiding the temptation to compromise when at times, compromise seems to be the norm.
Undeniably and unquestionably, the promise of Christ's return offers better in contrast to all that I described and implied above. He offers a better place, a changed state and eternity. These however, are all contingent on Christ's resurrection. And the good news is that the resurrection has happened. It has transpired! It is a reality! And did you know this resurrection carries not only future, but also present significance? I am reminded of a candy I enjoyed as a kid called “Now and Later.” Says the Apostle Paul in 1 Cor.15:14, 19, "And if Christ is not risen, then our preaching is empty and your faith is also empty. . .If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men the most pitiable” (NKJV).
So going back to the aforementioned concern, what is there now for me? I declare a present sense of hope, assurance of Christ's presence, victory over sin, and in a real way, His daily provision and protection. There is no false hope. There is no need to depend on luck in “numbers” or in anything, as God is reliable and totally dependable. Now, that does not mean that one will not have obstacles, disappointments and apparent failures. One will have these, but with each challenge one is guaranteed power to face and confront in the strength Christ supplies. The same Apostle Paul who has much to say about resurrection references real struggles and issues. However, I am not surprised that he finds hope in the promise of human resurrection. Consider his words in 2 Cor.4:8,9, “We are hard- pressed on every side, yet not crushed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed." Now I do not know if one would desire to be a Christian after reading this. However, look at the blessing in verse 14: "Knowing that He who raised up the Lord Jesus will also raise us up with Jesus, and will present us with you." Furthermore, in verse 17 Paul likens our situation as "light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory;"
As for future benefits, Christ promises that our present state of corruption and mortality will be replaced with incorruption and immortality. Additionally, the Apostle Paul contends that even death will be destroyed. Observe this powerful statement in 1 Cor. 15:54-57: “So when this corruptible has put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written: ‘Death is swallowed up in victory.’ “O Death, where is your sting? O Hades, where is your victory?” The sting of death is sin, and the strength of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.” What could be better? Don't you get tired of hearing about deaths every week? And it’s worse when the death is of a loved one. The benefits of Christ’s resurrection which will be manifested in His return will remedy present ills and irregularities and imbalances. What could be better? Is there any wonder that I posed the caption, “Our Only Sure Guarantee”? Bill Gaither was right when he penned, “Because He lives I can face tomorrow, Because He lives all fear is gone; Because I know He holds the future. And life is worth the living just because He lives.”