By Simon Baker, student news writer, Office of University Communications
CAMPBELLSVILLE, Ky. – Dr. Mike O’Neal, associate professor of theology, Old Testament and Hebrew at Campbellsville University, emphasized the lasting and enduring hope that can only be found in Christ at Campbellsville University’s chapel recently in Ransdell Chapel.
O’Neal read from Psalm 33:1-15, about “a legacy of hope.” O’Neal emphasized to students how the “surest hope a person can have is hope in the Lord.” He said, “As long as you and I have hope, we can make it. No matter the hardship.”
O’Neal, referring to the book of Psalms, said, “about half are very positive, very bright” and encouraging. He said the other half of Psalms is “darker psalms about complaining and lamenting and praying to God in times of need and desperation.”
O’Neal said Psalm 33 “is full of bright expectation but yet they are darker tones in the Psalm.” For example, he said he believes Psalm 33:18-20, “was written by God’s people when they are full of expectation, and yet they are going through dark and difficult time.”
O’Neal was comparing daily struggles to struggles God’s people were facing in Psalm 33. He said, “Life happens. Life has a way of following us. We have all sorts of expectations for that new, fresh start, but maybe you are in need of a sense of hope that expectation will get better.”
O’Neal said, “Hope is, first of all, to wait in the Lord.”
He said, “When you’re in that time of challenge, of darkness, of difficulty if you need that sense of hope, the hope that you get from the Lord could be saying to you, be still, and know, be still and trust.”
O’Neal asked, “Do you trust God enough to simply wait and see? Are you willing to be patient on God and His plans.”
O’Neal said, “Just because we’re waiting, doesn’t mean we’re not doing anything at all. Hope also is to worship the Lord.” He said how worship starts with God. Quoting Psalm 33, O’Neal said, “Rejoice in the Lord, O you righteous. Praise befits the upright. Praise the Lord with the lyre. Sing to Him a new song. Play skillfully on the strings.”
O’Neal’s final point was about love that is offered only by Christ. He said the words “steadfast love” was “springled” throughout the latter verses in Psalm 33.
He shared God’s promise not only to Israel but to all people. O’Neal said, “God said to Israel, no matter what you do, I love you, and I will always love you.”
Campbellsville University is a widely acclaimed Kentucky-based Christian university with an enrollment of nearly 12,000 students. The university offers over 100 programs of study including doctoral, masters, bachelors, associate and certification programs. The website for complete information is www.campbellsville.edu.