How should the hope we look forward to interact with and be displayed in our apologetics?

Jacob, thank you for being willing to answer my question.
How should the hope that we look forward to ,(the eager expectation, patiently actively longing for the fulfillment of the first fruits) interact with and be displayed in our apologetics?
18 For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us. 19 For the anxious longing of the creation waits eagerly for the revealing of the sons of God. 20 For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of Him who subjected it, in hope 21 that the creation itself also will be set free from its slavery to corruption into the freedom of the glory of the children of God. 22 For we know that the whole creation groans and suffers the pains of childbirth together until now. 23 And not only this, but also we ourselves, having the first fruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of our body. 24 For in hope we have been saved, but hope that is seen is not hope; for who hopes for what he already sees? 25 But if we hope for what we do not see, in perseverance we wait eagerly for it.
Thank you so much
Rod Page

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Hi Rodney,
Thank you for your question. Hope should definitely be our most important focus right now and so your question is one of the most crucial questions that Christians need to address at this point.
I was reading the book Rise of Christianity recently and in it, the author (who shares the same first name as you, Rodney Stark :smiley:) points out that one of the key reasons for the rise of Christianity in the early centuries was that Christians were able to instill in the people a great sense of hope that other pagan religions were unable to during the time of the two great epidemics (AD 180 and AD 251 )
The verse that you have put down encapsulates the sufferings we go through in the here and now, ‘The whole of creation groans and suffers’. The consequences of sin goes down to the cellular level and there are degrees of brokenness that we suffer because of the consequence of a world marred by sin. But the great Christian hope is that God is redeeming the world in and through His son Jesus Christ. That there is a great cosmic plan behind it all and God’s plan to redeem this world is in motion. We as Christians have the great privilege of participating in the resurrection hope of Christ in the here and now. No matter what the situations, we as Christians hold on to the promises of God and battle through our circumstances and situations while shining the light of hope onto the world.
How this translates to you Rodney in your particular circumstances and situation is something that you will have to pray and seek God’s guidance in. We need to act as people of hope. And I can say that love is one of the great responses of people who act out of a sense of hope. We love, act generously and sacrificially even at times when things around seem scarce because our hope does not lie on events that are fleeting but on an unchanging and infinite God who is always in abundance.
I pray that you are able to translate this message of hope in your life and in the lives of those around you.
God bless you Rod Page.

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