“For the earnest expectation of the creature waiteth for the manifestation of the sons of God. . . . Because the creature itself also shall be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God. For we know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now. And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body. For we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for? But if we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience wait for it.” (Romans 8:19, 21-25)
The Holy Spirit has insured us with a witness with our own spirit that, as the children of God, we have certain affirmations about our relationship with the Creator. Clearly, we are to know that our eternity is “reserved in heaven” for us, since the power of none other than the Creator Himself keeps us (1 Peter 1:4-5).
The current “fellowship of his sufferings” that we are privileged to now endure (Philippians 3:10) has absolutely no comparative value to the glory we will share with our Redeemer for eternity. It is a fact that the creature (read “creation”) is an unwilling participant, “groaning” in those sufferings. Yet, because of the Holy Spirit’s witness, we have an “earnest expectation” that assures us “that in nothing [we] shall be ashamed, but that . . . Christ shall be magnified in my body, whether it be by life, or by death” (Philippians 1:20).
We “are saved by hope,” but we have not seen that hope. Hope seen is not hope. Hope expected is patiently waited for. HMM III