What’s Your Ernest Hope? Do You Expect It?
“The Lord taketh pleasure in them that fear him, in those that hope in his mercy.” Psalm 147:11
I’m so glad that Scripture doesn’t say, hope in His judgment, but it says hope in His mercy. God’s love for us is all about His mercy and grace, and Hope in His word is founded on His love for us and passion for our good.
Hope is the expectation by faith that we will receive what we desire. Hope holds a place in our hearts for what we will have while we wait for it.
“Be of good courage, and he shall strengthen your heart, all ye that hopein the Lord.” Psalm 31:24
Where we rest our faith will determine if we ever see it fulfilled.
“Why art thou cast down, O my soul? and why art thou disquieted within me? hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him, who is
the health of my countenance, and my God.” Psalms 42:11
“Hope deferred maketh the heart sick: but when the desire cometh, it isa tree of life.” Proverbs 13:12
Sometimes the waitingof hope can leave us weary and discouraged to the point of losing heart if the hope is deferred for too long.
“But I will hope continually, and will yet praise thee more and more.” Psalm 71:14
The patriarchs of the Old Testament and the Apostles, Prophets, Pastors, Evangelists and Teachers of the New Testament, even to this day, demonstrated, and do display, through their unswerving faith, that God is our Rewarder, no matter how long it may take to realize our expectation of good. All will come in due time by our faith.
This is the fundamental requirement of HOPE —Our faith in God.
“But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.” Hebrews 11:6
By the things we experience we develop hope, and hope comes from the Word of God and that hope is sustained by the Word God. More specifically by what is recorded of things God has done and the promises of God for the future.
The woman with the issue of blood was desperate and at the end of her resources when she heard about Jesus, the Healer. Someone told her that there was someone who could restore her to wholeness. She had suffered many things of many physicians and spent all the money she had doing so, but she only grew worse. When she heard about Jesus she received hope and that hope led her to believe what she had heard. So she said, if I touch the hem of His garment I will be healed. [Matthew 14:36]
“When she had heard of Jesus, came in the press behind, and touched his garment. For she said, If I may touch but his clothes, I shall be whole. And straightway the fountain of her blood was dried up; and she felt in her body that she was healed of that plague.” Mark 5:27-29
So she pressed through the crowd and made her way to Jesus and touched his clothes. Then, instantly she was healed. The flow of blood ceased. In that same moment Jesus perceived that power had gone out from Him.
“And Jesus, immediately knowing in Himself that power had gone out of Him, turned around in the crowd and said, “Who touched My clothes?” Mark 5:30
Well the disciples were somewhat perplexed at His question because He was being thronged by a crowd pushing and shoving Him about, but this woman’s touch was different from them all and it got Jesus’s attention. What made the difference? Jesus tells us in His answer to her when she told Him the whole story of what had happened to her in the past twelve years.
“But the woman, fearing and trembling, knowing what had happened to her, came and fell down before Him and told Him the whole truth. And He said to her, “Daughter, your faith has made you well. Go in peace, and be healed of your affliction.” Mark 5:33-34
Her faith was the catalyst for her healing. Jesus said so. Her hope was her decision to believe that He could and would heal her and her faith was pressing through the crowd to touch the hem of His garment. [Matthew 14:36]
The Psalmist also anchored His faith in the Word of God.
“I wait for the Lord, my soul doth wait, and in his word do I hope.” Psalm 130:5
Abraham hoped against hope, when there was no hope in the natural world, that he would be the Father of many nations according to the Word of God. And all faith must be according to the Word of God. Faith in anything else is powerless.
“Who againsthopebelieved inhope, that he might become the father of many nations, according to that which was spoken, So shall thy seed be.” Romans 4:18
Now our salvation and justification is by faith and we do not stagger at that truth. We gladly accept it. Faith is our pathway into the grace of God and it is by grace we are saved through faith.
“Thereforeit is of faith, that it might beby grace; to the end the promise might be sure to all the seed; not to that only which is of the law, but to that also which is of the faith of Abraham; who is the father of us all, (As it is written, I have made thee a father of many nations,) before him whom he believed, even God, who quickeneth the dead, and calleth those things which be not as though they were”. Romans 4:16-17
It is also by hope that we are saved.
“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?” Romans 8:24
Finally, this is our summons from God, our Father and our Lord Jesus Christ.
“Therefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and rest your hope fully upon the grace that is to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ…”
1 Peter 1:13