What do you hope for? Where does your hope lie? Better make sure you are not lied to regarding HOPE. Let’s consider the meaning of HOPE.
Wikipedia defines HOPE as an “optimistic state of mind that is based on an expectation of positive outcomes with respects to events and circumstances in one’s life…”. Hope is further identified as a “desire for a particular thing to happen”. “I hope so” might be the best way to express that. Some relate hope to positive thinking…happiness, courage, and the ability to face challenges. Others relate hope to determination in life – willpower and such, goal setting and accomplishment. The flipside of hope is “doubt, despair and dread”. Wow. That does not sound very good at all!
So, what are you hoping for?
- Your favorite team to win the championship?
- That the COVID-19 vaccine will be effective or will there be another pandemic?
- That you might get a new job, a raise at work, a new cell phone, or a new car?
- Maybe you are dealing with a serious health issue and you are hoping for healing, or relief from the pain and discomfort or the anxiety that your illness causes.
How about considering a more everlasting HOPE?
It’s time to look at a hope that goes beyond YOU. A hope that rests in another far more powerful and knowledgeable than you – with eternal perspective. The Bible defines and describes hope with certainty. “Confident expectation” is the perspective of God’s word. Hope is not visible with the naked eye but it is visible with the archaic use of hope – TRUST, or RELIANCE. Maybe it’s time to consider God’s offer.
All mankind is infected with the disease called sin. That disease leads to physical death and there is nothing you or modern-day medicine or vaccines can do about it. Why not consider the claims of the Bible (which no one can refute).
Romans 6:23a – “For the wages of sin is death…” Think of wages as compensation for services rendered. The best of lives and the worst of lives always end in death – wages PAID IN FULL! Nothing you can do will stop that, BUT you can prepare for what lies beyond death by taking advantage of God’s offer.
Romans 6:23b – “…BUT the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord”.
How can I take advantage of that free offer you might ask. Well, I’m glad you did ask! The answer goes back to that archaic use of hope – TRUST / RELIANCE.
One day a prison guard – fearing the end of his life – asked the Apostle Paul how he could take advantage of that free offer. The reply was as simple as thinking of TRUST or RELIANCE.
Acts 16:31 revealed the answer – “Believe (TRUST) in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved…”
The result of securing that relationship with the Lord is not an “I hope so”, but “I know so”. The security of that relationship is “confident expectation” as we defined earlier.
No human effort or wishful thinking can achieve your salvation!
No good-deeds or sacrificial living will win you favor with God!
No goal setting or willpower will make you acceptable to the Lord Jesus Christ!
All those human efforts will only result in “doubt, despair, and dread”.
Consider changing your focus from YOU to HIM.
Titus 3:5-7 simplified says this –
“He saved us…”
…NOT by our good-deeds…
“But by His mercy…”
“He poured out on us…”
“His grace justified (saved) us…”
The results for YOU – “confident expectation of eternal life”. Further, explained as an “anchor of the soul”… “sure and steadfast”.
Your confidence about eternal matters should NEVER be “I hope so” but “I know so”.
1 John 5:13 These things I have written to you who believe (TRUST) in the name of the Son of God, so that you may know that you have eternal life.
 Third Edition, BDAG – p.747
 Hebrews 6:19