I used to be confused by the word “HOPE” in the Word of God. I think many of us think of “HOPE” as a “cross your fingers and hope so” kind of thing....much like many of us hope the Twins can actually win today. However, that is not the correct interpretation of the HOPE talked about in the Bible.
I am going off memory, so I won't get it exactly right, but HOPE in the Bible is defined as, “a certainty of things that have not been realized yet”....something like that. Our faith is the assurance of our hope for eternal life:
Hebrews 11:1 Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.
ESV translates the verse this way:
Hebrews 11:1 Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.
For those that have not been convicted and transformed by the Holy Spirit, this hope is foolishness:
1Corinthians 2:14 But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.
2Corinthians 4:3-4 But even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing, 4 whose minds the god of this age has blinded, who do not believe, lest the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine on them.
Romans 1:15-18 So, as much as is in me, I am ready to preach the gospel to you who are in Rome also. 16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek. 17 For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith; as it is written, "THE JUST SHALL LIVE BY FAITH." 18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness,
1Thessalonains 2:4 But as we have been approved by God to be entrusted with the gospel, even so we speak, not as pleasing men, but God who tests our hearts.
How crucial is this FAITH the Word talks about, which is the substance of our hope?:
Hebrews 11:6 But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.
those who diligently seek Him
Diligently is a word we should take a closer look at:
DILIGENTLY, adv. With steady application and care; with industry or assiduity; not carelessly; not negligently.
DILIGENT, a. [L.]
- Steady in application to business; constant in effort or exertion to accomplish what is undertaken; assiduous; attentive; industrious; not idle or negligent; applied to persons.
We need to put forth a constant effort to seek God:
Matthew 6:33 But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.
We need to seek Him in His Word, seek Him through prayer, seek His will for our like, fix our minds and hearts on the things above, not on this world:
Colossians 3:2 Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth.
Sometimes I wonder if there were others warned as Noah was warned. Commanded as Noah was commanded, yet they chose to listen to the world, instead of listening to God. How much ridicule must Noah have taken from the world as he built the ark? We need to diligently seek God and His will, making sure the cares of this world do not drowned out the voice of God in our life:
Hebrews 11:7 By faith Noah, being divinely warned of things not yet seen, moved with godly fear, prepared an ark for the saving of his household, by which he condemned the world and became heir of the righteousness which is according to faith.
Hebrews 11:24-26 By faith Moses, when he became of age, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh's daughter, 25 choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God than to enjoy the passing pleasures of sin, 26 esteeming the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures in Egypt; for he looked to the reward.