Luke 19 Lesson

Hope

HOPE

Google's English dictionarydefines hope as, “A feeling of expectation and desire for a certain thing to happen.”

All of us hope for something.

But what is it that we hope for?

Do we hope for a new car or a new house?  

Maybe we hope for a promotion or a new opportunity at work?  

But what about getting to spend eternity in Heaven?   Do we hope for that?  

We should! The hope that we have in Jesus is enough to get us through the hard times that all of us must face.

BIBLE VERSES ABOUT HOPE

Hope is an integral part of being a Christian and is mentioned throughout the Bible. In fact, t he word “hope” appears 130 times in the NASB translation of the Bible.   (source: Blue Letter Bible)

For today’s lesson, we have highlighted the following four Bible verses about hope:

  1. "We also celebrate in our tribulations, knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance; and perseverance, proven character; and proven character, hope; and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit." - Romans 5:3-5,
  2. “For in hope we have been saved, but hope that is seen is not hope; for who hopes for what he already sees?  But if we hope for what we do not see, with perseverance we wait eagerly for it.” - Romans 8:24-25,
  3. “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give youhopeand a future.” - Jeremiah 29:11,
  4. “Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that you will abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” - Romans 15:13.

THE STORY OF ZACCHEUS - LUKE 19:1-10

The story of Zaccheus is a story of hope!   Zaccheus was a tax collector who took money that did not belong to him.   His story shows us how Jesus can see past our bad decisions, and appeal to the good person that is inside of all of us!

  • “He entered Jericho and was passing through. And there was a man called by the name of Zaccheus; he was a chief tax collector and he was rich. Zaccheus was trying to see who Jesus was, and was unable because of the crowd, for he was small in stature. So he ran on ahead and climbed up into a sycamore tree in order to see Him, for He was about to pass through that way. When Jesus came to the place, He looked up and said to him, “Zaccheus, hurry and come down, for today I must stay at your house.” And he hurried and came down and received Him gladly. When they saw it, they all began to grumble, saying, “He has gone to be the guest of a man who is a sinner.” Zaccheus stopped and said to the Lord, “Behold, Lord, half of my possessions I will give to the poor, and if I have defrauded anyone of anything, I will give back four times as much.” And Jesus said to him, “Today salvation has come to this house, because he, too, is a son of Abraham. For the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost.” – Luke 19:1-10.

Notice how Zaccheus wanted to see Jesus so badly that he climbed up a tree just to get a glimpse of Him.   Jesus, sensing his heart, said to Zaccheus:

  • Zaccheus, hurry and come down, for today I must stay at your house.” – Luke 19:5.

Why did Jesus choose Zaccheus’ house to stay at?   Perhaps Jesus was impressed by Zaccheus’ determination to seek Him?   During His sermon on the mount, Jesus said:

  • “But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.” – Mathew 6:33.

Luke writes that Zaccheus hurried and came down and received Jesus gladly.   It looks like Jesus’ actions immediately pierced Zaccheus’ heart, as evidenced by the following words spoken by Zaccheus:

  • “Behold, Lord, half of my possessions I will give to the poor, and if I have defrauded anyone of anything, I will give back four times as much.” – Luke 19:8.

Zaccheus seems like he was a good person doing bad things.   That could probably be said about all of us at times.   But notice how Jesus responds.   His response gives us reason to be hopeful!

Jesus did not write him off.   He gave Him a second chance.   Because of the hope that Jesus provided, Zaccheus was able to turn away from his sinful life and follow Jesus.  

That is the point of today’s lesson!  

Sometimes all we need is a little hope to allow the good person that is inside us to emerge.Jesus provided hope for Zaccheus, and He does for us as well!

CONCLUSION:

The world can be a dark and dangerous place.   It is the hope that we have in Jesus that allows us to survive the tough times and chart a new course for our lives; one that leads to salvation, not condemnation. 

We will conclude today’s lesson with the following scripture taken from Paul’s second letter to the Corinthians:  

  • “Therefore we do not lose heart, but though our outer person is decaying, yet our inner person is being renewed day by day.  For our momentary, light affliction is producing for us an eternal weight of glory far beyond all comparison, while we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen;for the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal.” - 2 Corinthians 4:16-18.

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1) What did today’s Bible study make you think and feel?
2) How can you apply what you have just learned to something specific that is happening in your life?

***PLEASE POST YOUR QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS HERE***

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