Over the last two posts, we have explored
- the vast difference between Biblical hope and contemporary hope, and
- the Source of true hope being rooted in the miraculous “down payment” that God Himself has given to guarantee His promise!
To summarize both: Biblical hope is sure, certain, and guaranteed, while contemporary hope is mere wishful thinking. The reason Biblical hope is a sure thing is because God cannot disown Himself. He has put Himself – His Spirit – in our hearts as His deposit to guarantee His commitment to fulfill His final covenant with us!
In this post, I would like to just take a glance at the amazing depth of His promise to believers. Continuing on in our examination of Romans 5, just check out verses 6-11:
You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous person, though for a good person someone might possibly dare to die. But God demonstrates His own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
Since we have now been justified by His blood, how much more shall we be saved from God’s wrath through Him! For if, while we were God’s enemies, we were reconciled to Him through the death of His Son, how much more, having been reconciled, shall we be saved through His life! Not only is this so, but we also boast in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received reconciliation. -Romans 5:6-11
Again, Paul is so confident, so sure, so certain of his hope in Christ, he feels that he has liberty to boast about it! Biblical hope does not disappoint. Biblical hope is certain. It is a guarantee, based on a trustworthy deposit from a faithful Promise-Keeper.
Though we do not speak about hope in a Biblical way today, we act in real hope all the time. My actions demonstrate the things that I put my hope in – that is to say, the objects that I put my certain assurance in:
- When I flip on the light switch, I am essentially saying, “I hope the lights come on.” This hope is not just wishful thinking. I have a high level of certainty that they will come on. My hope is based in past experience with a trustworthy object.
- When I sit down in a chair, my body is saying, “I hope this chair holds me up!” This is not mere whimsy – it’s an expectation! And how disappointed (and in pain!) I would be if my hopes were not upheld!
- When I cook over a fire, my hope is that the fire will be hot. This hope is built on faith. I have faith that the fire will be hot and cook my food. Fire has always been faithful to be hot in the past; so I can trust (and truly “hope”) in it to be hot in the future!
We can be SURE of the things God has promised to us!
- total healing / wholeness.
- peace with Him.
- access to Him.
- His glad welcome!
- His unconditional love.
Our future is certain, because our God is good and trustworthy. We can live now in the hope of the future promised to us by God.
When the Biblical writers spoke about hope in their languages: Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek – they did not do so the way that I do in English. They did not mean some distant longing based on nothing more than wishful thinking: “Oh… I hope my favorite football team wins their next game…”
No, when the Biblical writers used the word hope – and they did so quite a lot, 180 times throughout the Bible! – they were referring to something they were absolutely certain would happen. There was absolutely no doubt in their minds that what they were hoping for would happen, because of Whom they were hoping in:
- a Person who is faithful and trustworthy,
- who has never broken a single promise He has ever made,
- who always does what He said He would do,
- who even put His own Spirit down in our hearts as a deposit to guarantee the fulfillment of His promises!
HOPE! How is the word “hope” used in your everyday language? What is God teaching you now about the real, true, Biblical hope that you have in Him?