What is hope from a biblical sense? Do we all need hope? Why do faith, hope, and love have such a strong correlation in the Bible? We’re going to discuss these questions about hope and deepen our knowledge about what hope is and why we need it. Let us begin our study on hope.
First, we must have a basic definition of what hope is. A very broad, general definition of hope would be something like “wanting something to happen” or “optimistically wishing something will happen”. These are very basic definitions of hope but now let’s see what the Bible says about hope.
Romans 8:24-25 says, “For in this hope we were saved. But hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what they already have? But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently”. Paul makes a valid point here about hope. We can have no hope if we already have what we hoped for. We can only hope for something that hasn’t happened yet.
Since we know that hope is the desire for something to happen, what is it that Christians are waiting for? Why do Christians have hope? The answer is simple. We are waiting for Jesus Christ to return so we can have eternal life with him. Jesus tells us in John 14:3 that He is coming back. We believe and know this is true. But the hope comes from the opportunity to spend eternity with God. Titus 1:2 clarifies, “in the hope of eternal life, which God, who does not lie, promised before the beginning of time,”. We have an opportunity to spend an eternity with Almighty God, that is our hope. It is a fact that Jesus is coming back. However, it is not a fact that we will all receive eternal life. We must live a life obedient to Him. Hebrews 5:9 tells us, “and, once made perfect, he became the source of eternal salvation for all who obey him”. God is the source of salvation for all who obey Him. Therefore, salvation is our hope.
Often times, faith and hope are confused in definition and in context. Let’s look at the definition of faith from a biblical standpoint. The writer of Hebrews states, “Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.” (Hebrews 11:1). Faith is described as the confidence or evidence in what we hope for and the assurance of what we cannot see. Now, if we tie that back with our definition of hope, we described hope as “wanting something to happen”. Hope is wanting the event to happen and faith is having the confidence that it will happen. We hope for eternal life with God, and we should have faith that we will receive it like Paul (2 Timothy 4:8).
In conclusion, hope is wanting something to happen. Therefore, we have hope of eternal life. Faith is based on the past and hope is based on the future. Christians need faith and hope.