“The hope of the righteous shall be gladness: but the expectation of the wicked shall perish.” Proverbs 10:28
God gives a real, substantive hope to His people. The hope of the gospel is not that maybe, someday if everyone will get their act together, this world will be a better place to live. Though we should live in such a way that the world is indeed a better place to live, gospel hope goes much farther. God gives His saints a sure expecation of living forever in a new heavens and new earth where righteousness dwells. God's promise for His people is to one day see His full glory unveiled. His promise is that we will one day be perfectly conformed to Christ's image, thus free from all our blemishes. His promise is that one day we will dwell where Christ is high and exalted in the sight of all.
True hope gives gladness. It will give gladness then, but it also gives it now. Do you sometimes forget to see the biggest of the big pictures? Have you found yourself forgetting the eternal perspective? Meditating on gospel hope will give you sweet joy.
The contrast of the verse is that the expectation of the wicked shall perish. Those who continue forever in rebellion against God will not have a happy end. Sobering, but true. God will not be mocked; His holy justice will be vindicated. Does evil win? No. Does a life of rejecting Christ have no consequences? No. Are all the sinful pleasures one can enjoy in life worth it? No.
So, may we as believers not live for the next passing pleasure. May we live with the confidence and joy that hope brings. May we forsake sinful temptation because we know something better. May we not allow dark thoughts and despair to rule us, because we can see the beauty of the big picture.