Hope against Hope

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   (Posted from Michigan)

Jesus told the bad guys that the one who would accuse them before the father would be Moses, "on whom your hopes are set." (Mt 5:45)

First off, the idea of standing "before" God almighty, creator of heaven and earth scares me silly. Once I had a chat with Leonardo DiCaprio and my knee started trembling. I guess I’ll be pretty bad off standing before the God who made the iceberg that sunk his titanic ship.

My suspicion is that I can not begin to imagine the drama Jesus casually refers to here. But apparently we will be accused before the Father. I don’t like the sound of that.

But here’s the cool part, the one who will accuse us is "the one on whom our hopes are set."!!! We are automatically choosing who will prosecute us, when we choose what we set our hopes on.

In the case of those pestering Jesus in Matthew 5, their hopes were set on Moses, so Moses will be the one to accuse them before the Father. In our case…on whom are our hopes set?  For a lot of people our hope is in the dead presidents. Some other, braver souls have set their hopes on, gulp, themselves.

Does that mean they themselves will testify against themselves? No 5th amendment at the judgment. There we really will tell the whole truth, even as we stand to accuse ourselves. Personally I think I’d rather go up against a few dead presidents, or Moses even, than to go against myself. Because I’ve "got the goods" on myself. Imagine having to totally truthfully accuse yourself. Not a pretty picture.

And there Jesus stood, right in front of them, the immaculate sacrificial lamb. And he simply asked them to come to Him, to approach the Father’s justice with Jesus’ arms of forgiveness and protection around them. But they refused to set their hope on Jesus. He lamented, "yet you refuse to come to me to have life."(Mt 5:40)

They preferred their own hopes. They refused to come to Jesus. Still hoping in something beside Jesus? Yeah, well, good luck with that.

David Roller