Jesus is as good as his word.
A promise is only as good as the person making it. That’s why you put more stock in people you know than in those you don’t know. When someone you know to be a person of character makes a promise, you can rest assured that he or she will make good on it. But, when the guy with the toothy grin and plaid sports coat says he’s giving you a special price on that new car, you want to check his word against a reliable consumer magazine, don’t you? You can only trust the promise if you trust the person and you cannot trust someone you do not know.
This is why the Jews in Jesus’ day failed to understand God’s promises about the Messiah and why even today, many men and women with seminary degrees still fail to grasp the promises of God. They have never gotten to know him, so his words are as in comprehensible to them as the women’s news of Jesus’ resurrection was to his disciples.
The Bible explains that whatever was written in earlier times, was written for our instruction. This is so important! Through perseverance and the encouragement of the scriptures, we might have hope. How do we get hope? We find it in the scriptures. Jesus spent several hours giving the encouragement of the scriptures to his audience of two on the road to Emmaus because he wanted to give them a truer, more reliable hope than they had known before.
Real hope comes from digging into the living word of God and treasuring it in your heart. Only later when Jesus ate a meal with them, did the Lord open the men’s eyes to recognize him. Then almost immediately, he vanished from their sight. At that point, they no longer needed to see him in person. From then on, they could see him in his word.
Let me quote the scripture to you one more time. Romans 15;4, “For whatever things were written before,” that’s in the Old Testament, “were written for our learning that we through the patience and comfort of the scriptures we might have hope.” The one primary place for you and me to find hope is in God’s word.