What does Christianity have in common with Star Wars?

Both claim to be built on hope.

Princess Leia famously says in the 1977 original “Help me Obi Wan Kenobi, you’re my only hope”.

“Rebellions are built on hope” says Jyn Erso and Cassian Andor in Rogue One.

And of course, following one of the greatest scenes in the franchise when Darth Vader marches through a corridor in relentless pursuit of a thumb drive, when said thumb drive is safely delivered and the question is asked “what’s this”, the answer is of course…“hope”.

On it goes. The story is built on hope.

But it’s flimsy hope. It’s hope based on circumstances, human possibilities and abilities. The circumstances are dire. Human possibilities are slim (“never tell me the odds” says Han). Yet the abilities of the good guys mean they’ll win.

It’s fun. But don’t be fooled. This hope is far from Christian hope. (“Far, far away.”)

Christian hope is based not on circumstances, human possibilities nor abilities. Christian hope depends on the sure promises of God.

God promised Abraham (Genesis 12:2-3):

“I will make of you a great nation” and “in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.”

How does Abraham respond (Romans 4:18)?

“In hope he believed against hope, that he should become the father of many nations, as he had been told, ‘So shall your offspring be’.”

Hope depends on God’s sure promise. For God’s promises are trustworthy.

Our Easter message is one of hope.

Jesus himself describes his suffering, death, resurrection and the forgiveness of sins in his name as fulfilling what’s written (Luke 24:46-47).

The Apostle Peter says of God (1 Peter 1:3):

“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.”

Christian hope is sure. Our future is as sure as God’s promises!

And like Abraham (Heb 11:10), our hope is not for this life only (1 Co 15:19). Our hope is for the glory of God (Romans 5:2). “When Christ who is your life appears, you also will appear with him in glory” (Colossians 3:2).

Which would you rather? Flimsy hope based on bad odds overcome? Or sure hope based on God’s sure promises answered yes in the risen Jesus, Lord of all? Praise be to God.

Warmly in Christ,

Jon Baird
Sunday Assistant Minister