As my pastor says, “we’re rounding third and coming home”! Here is our second-to-last MIQVEH verse:
O Lord, the hope (MIQVEH) of Israel,
all who turn away from you will be disgraced.
They will be buried in the dust of the earth,
for they have abandoned the Lord, the fountain of living water.
Jeremiah 17:13 New Living Translation copyright© 1996, 2004, 2007 by Tyndale House Foundation.
I last discussed this verse in my first MIQVEH post, One Hope. Today I want to focus on one word: living. Jeremiah, in the middle of a national drought, describes God as a fountain of living water. Jesus described Himself as living water in a time of spiritual drought. What’s the deal with “living”? Why bring it up? If God exists at all, then He must be alive… but what is meant by “living water”?
The significance of “living” is that it means “life-giving” as well as “eternal”. God, our Source of Hope, is also the source of life that is not only immune to physical death but insuppressible by the decay around us. Jesus said of this life:
I tell you the truth, I am the gate for the sheep…My purpose is to give them a rich and satisfying life.
John 10:7, 10b New Living Translation copyright© 1996, 2004, 2007 by Tyndale House Foundation.
Rich and satisfying. Does that describe your life? It is interesting that Jesus spoke these words in the hearing of the Apostles, who later wrote them down for our benefit. The Apostles were all persecuted for their faith and suffered for their belief in Jesus as “The Way”. It is easy to think our lives are rich and satisfying when everything is going well, or reasonably well, but what about when tragedy or persecution hits? Is your life rich and satisfying even in times of isolation or waiting?
Hope is all about waiting for what we don’t have yet. How can we enjoy a rich and satisfying life when it is marked by the absence of what we are hoping for? Waiting for healing, a baby, a relationship, justice, or attention can distract us even from the richest aspects of our lives. The answer to all those deep-felt hopes is a LIVING Hope:
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you, who by God’s power are being guarded through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.
1 Peter 1:3-5 English Standard Version Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a division of Good News Publishers.
The “living hope” that is available to all of us–the inheritance God has planned for us–comes through the power of Jesus’ resurrection. Did you know that the same power that rose Jesus from the dead on Easter Sunday can help to bring life to those who follow Him? Not just eternal life, but authority to live this life, imperfect as it is, to the full. The Hope that Jesus brings us helps us to keep trusting in His goodness, even while we are waiting for the things we are hoping for.
I want to know Christ and experience the mighty power that raised him from the dead. I want to suffer with him, sharing in his death, so that one way or another I will experience the resurrection from the dead!
Philippians 3:10-11 New Living Translation copyright© 1996, 2004, 2007 by Tyndale House Foundation.
Yet I am confident I will see the Lord’s goodness
while I am here in the land of the living.
Psalm 23:17 New Living Translation copyright© 1996, 2004, 2007 by Tyndale House Foundation.
Waiting for our hopes to be fulfilled by God’s mighty power is a form of suffering! It’s while we are waiting that our selfish ambitions and limited plans die. If you feel like you are dying while you are waiting, be encouraged! If you are determined to know Christ and “suffer” for Him, you will experience His resurrection power as He brings His hope to life in you.
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