INTRODUCTION

We have been told time and time again that we Christians have to live by faith. We are taught much on faith and how it works. Many Christians know a lot about faith but not all know what it actually is. Faith is not something that is for the upper echelon of believers. It is really nothing special for that matter. Faith should be the normal mode for Christians. However, because of a lack of the word of God, many people just don’t know what faith is. Thank God for evangelists like Kenneth Copeland, Oral Roberts and the like who teach us faith. However, there is a component that we overlook in regards to faith. It is HOPE. This study will present to you the knowledge from God’s word about hope. When we talk about faith we have to include hope. When we mention hope we must say faith. The two can’t operate alone.

In addition, we will find that there are other spiritual principles that are directly associated with hope and faith. This is not a study on faith per se (See the studies of faith – Faith Parts 1 through 3 for more information on faith). This study will reveal how important our hope is to our faith and how faith can’t work without it.

HOPE DEFINED

What is hope? My bible dictionary says that hope is a gift of the Holy Spirit which abides, an essential characteristic of the Christian (1 Corinthians 13:8, 13). Not mere expectation and desire, as in Greek literature, but includes trust, confidence, refuge in God, the God of Hope (Romans 15:13). Hope is linked with faith (Hebrews?11:1). It depends on the resurrection of Christ (1?Corinthians 15:19).

The bible says

(Heb 11:1 KJV) “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.”

We see that hope is an integral part of faith and that there really is no faith without it. Webster’s dictionary defines hope as: To wish (a desire, longing, or strong inclination) for something with the expectation of its fulfillment. To have confidence: TRUST. To look forward to with confidence or expectation. It is important to realize that in order to hope for something there must be a “something” to hope for. However, this “something” does not exist yet. Paul said

(Rom 8:24-25 KJV) “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? {25} But if we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience wait for it.”

Hope is a confident expectation to receive what you desire as you wait patiently on the Lord to possess it. Hope is comprised of Confidence (trust), expectation, patience, and desire. We can have confidence in God according to 1 John 5:14,15. To expect is to anticipate receiving and therefore you act like it. Patience counters hastiness, which leads to disobedience (See the study on Obedience). Patience is a consistent, stable waiting for something. The desire is the picture of what you want (blueprint). We can also say that hope is to fully rely on the fact that God will do what he says and what he promised is “in the bank.” Therefore I can hope in God.

Hope is like a blueprint according to Kenneth Copeland and I agree. Hebrews 11:6 reveals this point. If faith is being sure of what we hope for then hope must be the thing we see that faith brings to the natural. If I am going to build a house, I first need a blueprint that basically expresses the vision of the house that the designer/architect sees. The blueprint is the hope of the house in a sense. The contractors then take that blueprint and then build the house. Likewise, our hope is the blueprint for the “something” that we desire. We then use our faith to bring this something into existence. Our faith is like the contractors who build the house using the blueprint. Our faith will use the hope that we have to bring about what that blueprint expresses. Faith needs direction or focus and this is why hope is so important. Hope is the vision, goal, destination, or promised land (possession) that we see in our minds that faith will work on to bring about.

Therefore, before you can use faith, you must have hope. Without hope, you will become unfocused and reaching for the wind. Maintain the hope that you have whether it is for healing, deliverance, protection, a desire, a need, or whatever. Stay focused on the word of God and let your hope be founded on it. Don’t let Satan take your hope. You cannot reach your goals or acquire what you desire if you lose hope. A person has no reason to pursue the “something” once all hope is lost and they, therefore, give up. See Romans 4:18-21 for the testimony of a great example of hope.

HOPELESSNESS

Hopelessness is a condition where a person loses all hope for something. Hopelessness is the opposite of hope. It is the state of not expecting your desire to come to pass. There is no confidence, patience, expectation, and in its worse state, not even a desire. Hopelessness is a state of emptiness. If you don’t expect to receive than you won’t receive. If you are not confident then you doubt. Doubt, in turn, can lead to disobedience (See the study on The Effects of Fear and Obedience). There is no trust in God when there is hopelessness. Hopelessness disables a person from accomplishing what God wants them to do.

This is what Satan wants to do to a person living by faith. If all hope can be taken from a person then faith will not be activated. The person may go into depression (which is a state of hopelessness) and be ineffective in ministry and many other things. Never lose hope! Keep your hope in God who continues to be faithful (trustworthy, unmoved, stable). By that, you will know that God will answer. Remember though that you have to base everything on God’s word and then you will have confidence knowing his will (See 1 John 5:14,15). The bible says

(Num 23:19 KJV) “God is not a man, that he should lie; neither the son of man, that he should repent: hath he said, and shall he not do it? or hath he spoken, and shall he not make it good?”

(2 Cor 1:20 KJV) “For all the promises of God in him are yea, and in him Amen, unto the glory of God by us.”

(Heb 13:8 KJV) “Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever.”

See also (Hebrews 1:12 and Psalm 102:27 – the stability of Christ/God)

This definition reveals or alludes to two types of hope: Passive hope and active hope. Note that bible hope is an active hope.

TYPES OF HOPE

Passive Hope

Passive hope is a type of hope where nothing is being done. There is no expectation in something that is being professed to be hoped for. Passive hope is to wish or desire only. When someone says something like “I sure hope I get some money for this bill”, they or usually operating in passive hope. They are not doing anything to get the money, rather they just DESIRE to have it and perhaps by some osmosis it will appear. This is a Godless type of hope. A person with this type of hope desires something but does not put their hope in anything and therefore their hope is aimless and therefore will result in nothing. Faith definitely will not work with this type of hope because faith needs a purpose or something to lock on to.

Active Hope

Active hope however is when you do something to bring what you hope for to pass. Now depending on what you put your hope in will dictate the actions that you take. If you put your hope in your abilities then you will do something (not that this is wrong). However, if you put your hope in God you will obey his voice and do whatever he tells you to do either by his spoken word to you in fellowship with him or from the bible. Remember this principle: Faith without hope and corresponding action accomplishes nothing (From Hebrews 11:1 and James 2:14-26)

SCRIPTURE REFERENCES

The following are some scripture references to hope that should help us understand hope more fully.

Psalm 31:24 (NKJV) 24Be of good courage, And He shall strengthen your heart, All you who hope in the LORD.

God will strengthen the heart of those who hope in him. Here is a benefit of confidently expecting God to do what he says he will do. As I hope in God, he gives me the strength necessary to maintain that hope. Amazing!

Psalm 33:17 through Psalm 33:22 (NKJV) 17A horse is a vain hope for safety; Neither shall it deliver any by its great strength.18Behold, the eye of the LORD is on those who fear Him, On those who hope in His mercy, 19To deliver their soul from death, And to keep them alive in famine.

20Our soul waits for the LORD; He is our help and our shield. 21For our heart shall rejoice in Him, Because we have trusted in His holy name. 22Let Your mercy, O LORD, be upon us, Just as we hope in You.

Hope in God’s mercy. We can trust that God will treat us with kindness and compassion. He looks out for our well-being.

Psalm 43:5 (NKJV) 5Why are you cast down, O my soul? And why are you disquieted within me? Hope in God; For I shall yet praise Him, The help of my countenance and my God.

Command your soul to hope in God. We can take control of our own mind and in this case directing it to hope in God.

Psalm 71:5 through Psalm 71:6 (NKJV) 5For You are my hope, O Lord GOD; You are my trust from my youth.6By You I have been upheld from birth; You are He who took me out of my mother’s womb. My praise shall be continually of You.

Psalm 71:14 (NKJV) 14But I will hope continually, And will praise You yet more and more.

God is our hope (Jeremiah 14:8, 17:7, 13,17; 50:7; Joel 3:16). God is our goal. He is what we focus on and it is God that we constantly get closer and closer to as we live. In God exists everything and therefore all that we need is in Him. So if I have God I have all that I need and want. God is indeed our hope.

Proverbs 13:12 (NKJV) 12Hope deferred makes the heart sick, But when the desire comes, it is a tree of life.

Our expectation must be fulfilled or our heart becomes sick. It is a bad thing to hope for something and not get it. We have to be sure that our hope is in God and not in our own selfish desires. Our blueprint should be according to the will of God else we couldn’t confidently expect God to bring it to pass.

Hebrews 6:13 through Hebrews 6:19 (NKJV) 13For when God made a promise to Abraham because He could swear by no one greater, He swore by Himself, 14saying, “Surely blessing I will bless you, and multiplying I will multiply you.” 15And so, after he had patiently endured, he obtained the promise. 16For men indeed swear by the greater, and an oath for confirmation is for them an end of all dispute. 17Thus God, determining to show more abundantly to the heirs of promise the immutability of His counsel, confirmed it by an oath, 18that by two immutable things, in which it is impossible for God to lie, we might have strong consolation, who have fled for refuge to lay hold of the hope set before us.19This hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and steadfast, and which enters the Presence behind the veil,

We see here how Abraham waited patiently for what God promised and then received it. But note that Paul says that God offers this hope to us. Therefore, this implies that we have to receive the hope that God has made available to us. It also says that this hope is an anchor for our souls firm and secure. This hope will not change. It must be accomplished if we, like Abraham, wait patiently on God.

FOUNDATION – THE ORIGIN OF THINGS

I think it would be very helpful to understand the creation of things in order to get a full grasp of hope and how it affects our faith. After all, this is where it all began.

THE ORIGIN OF THE UNIVERSE

(Gen 1:1-3 NIV) “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. {2} Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters. {3} And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light.”

First, we see that God is the creator. It was God who created all that we see around us. We also see the method God used to create things. He simply spoke the word. In verses 6, 9, 11, 14, and 20, God created by speaking the word.

The bible says,

(Psa 33:6 KJV) “By the word of the LORD were the heavens made; and all the host of them by the breath of his mouth.”

The phrase “breath of his mouth” is a synonym for ‘word’. The word breath can refer to the word spirit (pneuma). This then agrees with what Jesus said in John 6:63 that his/God’s words are Spirit and they are life as well. The bible also says

(Psa 148:4-5 KJV) “Praise him, ye heavens of heavens, and ye waters that be above the heavens. {5} Let them praise the name of the LORD: for he commanded, and they were created.”

(Heb 11:3 KJV) “Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear.”

See also Psalm 33:8,9.

These verses tell us two things: God is the creator and He creates by speaking what is to be created into existence. God is the source of all things in all realms (spirit, body, and soul). God created all that is in the spirit even all of the angels.

THE ORIGIN OF HUMANS

The bible says

(Gen 1:26-27 KJV) “And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth. {27} So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.”

We were created like everything else. However, God used himself as a “standard” to create us. That is, we were created in his image both male and female. Along with creating us, God commanded man to be fruitful, multiply and to have dominion over the earth. Since God’s words are faithful, we know that man could multiply and they had dominion. Just as God has dominion over all that exists (the universe), man has dominion over the earth (our universe if you will). Even we were created by the spoken word of God, which makes us a product of God’s word.

THE ORIGIN OF FAITH

We have already established that God the Father is the creator. The word father means the source. God created the heavens and the earth and everything that is in it. God created us. Now then where does faith come from? If you look at the scriptures in the bible concerning faith you will find that they talk about a person’s faith in God. However, where does this faith come from so that we can use it? The bible says

(Rom 12:3 KJV) “For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according to as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.”

This scripture implies that God gives faith to us. This follows what we previously learned: God created everything. The bible says

(Rom 10:17 KJV) “So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.”

The Message of Christ

What did Christ preach? You may be surprised to know that Jesus did not preach of specific salvation that we hear. He preached of a total salvation/deliverance. He preached repentance because of the kingdom of heaven. He then went out and revealed this kingdom to the people, which resulted in the liberation from the works of the enemy to all who would hear and believe. Therefore, faith comes by the hearing of the preaching of the kingdom of heaven. Also remember John 6:63 and 2?Corinthians?3:6.

Did God create faith though? When we read the scriptures about faith we will find that they reveal to us the faithfulness of God. That is God can be trusted. However, I have not found a verse of scripture that says in effect “God has faith” except one by teaching. Mark?11:22 says “Have faith in God.” Some Bible teachers say that this is really translated more accurately “Have God’s kind of faith.” It would be safe to say that if God can give me faith, and everything originates from God, then he must have faith too. What then is faith?

The bible says

(Heb 11:1 KJV) “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.”

I can say for sure that God does not have to see something in the natural (physical sense) to be sure of it. There is another type of seeing that we will discuss later in this study, which has to do with hope. Hope is a type of seeing or a mode of looking at something. Save that thought until later.

Faith is assurance, certainty, and trust. Faith is knowing that what you hope for is sure and certain of something even if you don’t see it. Yes, I would say that God has this. How else could he have created the universe? Imagine if God doubted. That doesn’t even sound right, does it? Are you sure of your ability to cook food, sew, read, or talk? Are you sure that the chair you are sitting on will hold you up or the floor you are standing on will not give in? Why are we sure of these things? Why do we have faith in these things? We see that faith in the realm of the soul and body are very well developed. We learn how to have faith in these realms and we develop that faith. We know what it takes to have confidence and we seek that confidence. However, as I notice time and time again, we don’t know how to have faith where it counts the most – In the spirit.

The bible says

(Rom 1:17 KJV) “For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.”

See also Galatians 3:11, Hebrews 10:37,38, and Habakkuk 2:4.

Now we should definitely know what faith is, how it operates, and all that is needed to use it effectively since we, being righteous, are to live by it. In addition to that the bible says

(Heb 11:6 KJV) “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.”

This makes it even more imperative that we learn all we can about faith. Remember that God is Spirit (See John 4:24). Therefore, if we want to operate the way that God operates, we must do it spiritually. This is where faith comes in. God operates by faith.

So far I have said much about faith. However, as we will find later in this study, faith and hope go hand-in-hand. You can’t have effective faith without bible hope and bible hope is useless if there is no faith.

THE HOPE OF GOD

We can ask ourselves what the hope of God is since we were created originally in God’s image. If I know how God hopes then I can mimic that and do likewise. Does God hope and then use faith to bring it (the blueprint) to pass? I believe he does. We said that hope involves a blueprint or the desire that we want to be manifested. I believe that when God created the universe, He knew exactly what he wanted to create. There was not a random activity and things ended up the way they are now. The bible says

(1 Cor 14:33 KJV) “For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace, as in all churches of the saints.”

The word confusion means to cause to be unclear in mind or intent, disorder, to put into total disorder.

I am sure that God was not as unclear as to what he wanted to create. It is quite obvious to our thinking and knowledge of God that He is orderly. Therefore, God had what he wanted in Himself and fully expected it to come to pass (with no doubt at all) when he spoke the word. God Hoped! God had faith and trusted in his own faith. He knows that whatever he wants, he gets – period. God speaks things into existence with the same confidence we have in moving our arm or leg. We don’t even think about it. Will my arm move or will my leg move for me so I can walk. No! We just do it. The hope we have in this situation is the destination we want to walk to or the object that we want to pick up or something like that. We act on this intrinsic hope and what we hoped for happens. We should use our faith in the same way when we trust God and act according to his will.

LIVING IN THE HOPE OF GOD

Now how can I have the type of hope that God has since I am created in his image? How can I act like my father and have the same effects as he has? The answer to this question is simple but not automatic.

Step One – Born of the Spirit

Before I can act like God I have to be like God. In order to be like God, I have to be connected to Him by being born again, i.e., born of the Spirit. I have to become the spiritual being that man was first created. The only way that this can happen if I am saved. Therefore, the first thing that I have to do in order to have the type of hope that is of God is to be of God. I have to be in his family and kingdom else I cannot operate in his realm of Spirit.

Step Two – Filled with his Spirit

The next thing that is necessary is to be filled with God’s Spirit. I mean this in a different way then you are accustomed to hearing this phrase. I am not talking about being filled with the Holy Spirit and speaking in tongues. I mean filled with his word. Jesus said.

(John 6:63 KJV) “It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life.”

The word “quickeneth” means to bring life to. Therefore, when I say to be filled with God’s Spirit, I mean to be filled with His word which comes from your personal Bible study. Study your bible and be filled with the truths that come from the word. Know as much as you can of what God said. The more you know the better off you will be. Jesus said (in addition to God the father) that we live by the word of God in addition to the food we eat for the body. See Matthew 4:4 and Deuteronomy 8:3. So be filled with God’s word. Read and study your bible. The importance of this step in our journey to effective hope is revealed in the next step.

Step Three – Know God’s Will

I must know God’s will if I am going to have true Godly hope active in my life. My life is no longer my own. I have been bought with a price. I belong to God the father and therefore have to obey. It is not my will but God’s will that is done on earth as it IS in heaven. We also learned in our study on Effective Prayer that God works through people. We have to be obedient and submit to God’s will in order for God to affect the earth with His will. We have to obey God. Our “operational” will have to be that of God’s will. The phrase operational will distinguishes my will from God’s will ineffectiveness. I may do what God says to do out of obedience and love for my father God but I may still have my own will, which I have sacrificed and put aside (relinquished it in my most submissive act). That is, I take my will and placed God’s will over it and therefore I act on God’s will instead of my will.

Let me make something clear here. Just because your will is not the same as God’s doesn’t make your will evil. It simply means that what you want to do, though it may be good, is not what God wants you to do. Read Tim Storey’s book Good Idea, God Idea for more insight into this. Therefore, though I think what I want to do is good, I still relinquish that will and replace it with God’s will for me.

Another point I would like to make is that doing God’s will is not dependant on how you feel about what God wants you to do. Doing God’s will is based on your love for God displayed by your obedience. Therefore, if I know God’s will I can act on his will. This brings us to the next and final step to having effective hope.

Step Four – Let God be the Painter

We said earlier that true bible hope is to have a confident expectation for something. Of course if we are speaking about the hope that is of God we have to realize that our confidence must be associated by the word of God. That is, I can be confident in God doing something only if He has committed himself to do something. Now if we consider the blueprint aspect of hope it will become clear that God is the one who creates the blueprint. Any other blueprint comes from our own will and it is not necessarily backed by God’s will. Therefore, I have to let God paint the picture in my mind. God has to create that blueprint that will be acted on by faith to manifest in the natural. If you know that the hope that is in you originated from God then you can be confident that that hope will be manifested by faith. See the studies of Faith for more information of the relationship of faith and hope.

I know that if I am praying according to God’s will then I will have, in the natural, whatever it is that I am hoping for. Why? Because God’s will is done on earth as it is in heaven and I am carrying out his will so it is done. You can bank it. If the expectation you have is based on something that God wants to bring to pass then you can be confident knowing that it will come to pass. This is why bible study and fellowship times are so important to you. They are ways of establishing the logos and Rhema word in you. We see the logos in our bible study times and the Rhema comes during our fellowship, meditation, and even Bible study times.

SUMMARY

So then how do I live with effective hope, that is, the hope from God? First of all you have to be “saved.” That is you have to be born again from death into life. Your spirit must be connected (reconciled) to God in order for you to live by anything that is in the kingdom of God. Stay in the word of God so that you learn his will. That is, be filled with His Spirit (Words of life). From your bible study and fellowship times, you will know God’s will. Stay in the word and keep an active relationship (fellowship) with God your father. Lastly, let God mold the hope in you. Act on His will that he reveals to you. Don’t strive to fulfill your own will. Move with God’s Spirit and allow Him to do His will in and/or through you.

PRACTICED HOPE

Let’s briefly review the basic principles of what we have learned so far. We know that hope is a confident expectation of something that we are waiting patiently for. This something has been promised to us by God either by the Rhema word or His written (logos) word. We know that God is hope and we should put our hope in him. We also have found the importance of Bible study and fellowship time in our living by this hope that we find in God.

PRACTICAL HOPE

Now that we know what hope is, let’s apply this knowledge to our practical lives. How can I practice hope in my life? How does this apply to get the things that I need? How does this apply to me feeding my family? What does hope have to do with me accomplishing my goals? Let’s look at this aspect of hope in our daily lives. I call this hope practical hope.

There is nothing mysterious or overly spiritual about hope. Sometimes we take new revelations into God’s word and treat them, as they are something for great men and women of faith. We treat spiritual principles as though they are something that those who have arrived have. No! This is wrong. If you are born again and connected to God your father then all of these spiritual things are totally natural to you. We only have to learn how they operate and then do it. This applies to hope. We need to find out what hope is in the kingdom of God and then do it. Why? Because being a citizen of the kingdom I do abide by the rules, regulations, and laws (principles) of the kingdom.

I am not going to list a bunch of circumstances and tell you how to apply hope to them. This principle of recipe spirituality is what gets us in trouble sometimes. There are no Formulas. Let me say that again THERE ARE NO FORMULAS IN LIFE! We have to learn to deal with each situation when that situation comes. We can spend our whole lives on how to do this or how to do that and all it takes is for one thing to be unexpected or out of place according to our formula and all is lost. However, if we learn and become a master at dealing with situations as they come then we are that much better. The only way to deal effectively with situations as they come is to depend on God. Put another way, we have to put our hope in God if we are going to remain stable and steadfast in our lives. Otherwise, we will roll with the situations and circumstances in our lives.

Know God For Yourself

You cannot expect to have hope in God or the hope of God if you will if you do not know God for yourself. If your relationship with God is based on your pastor’s revelations, a minister’s revelation, or some famous evangelist, then you are in trouble. When you are in trouble it will be very unlikely that any of these people will be with you. Even if they were there, they would be very little that they could do. You have to know how to get with God yourself. You have to know God’s voice for yourself. You have to know what God says and then act on it. Unless you do these things you will be at the mercy of your formulas, teachings, doctrines, and your situations.

When a situation faces you and you perceive that you are in trouble then seek God’s face. Know that God is your deliverer and see yourself delivered. Your hope is that you are delivered and your faith in God will get you there. Do you see? Your hope or confident expectation is for God to get you through the trial. What do you see when you face trouble? What do you see when you are pulled outside of your own abilities? Do you see yourself fail or do you see yourself lifted up by God your father? If you don’t know God for yourself then you won’t hope in him. He will be nothing but a formula on pages in the bible. However, if the revelation of the reality of God is in you then you can call on him for help and expect him to help you. We are quick to call on family and friends for help but not the one who can really help us with all things. Why do we call on family and friends when we are in trouble? We believe that they will help us and that with their help we can get through the problem.

Your Help Is From The LORD

Be aware that your help is from above. God is your helper. Jesus Christ went through things in the same way we go through them so that he can help us in our time of need. The bible says

(Heb 2:18 KJV) “For in that he himself hath suffered being tempted, he is able to succour them that are tempted.”

Jesus can indeed relate to what we go through. Why? He came down on this earth operating as the Son of MAN not the Son of GOD. That is very important for you to realize in your spirit. You will hear some people say something like “Of course he could do that. He is Jesus the Son of God.” In one respect this is true but the implication is wrong. It is implied in statements such as these that the reason Jesus could go through certain things or do certain things was that he was the Son of God or God himself on the earth. The reason Jesus could go through what he went through and do the things that he did was that he was anointed with the Holy Spirit of God. What does this tell you? It tells you that the same spirit that operated in Jesus Christ operates in you. This is why Jesus the Christ could say

(John 14:12 KJV) “Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father.”

Therefore, if you know that the same Spirit in Jesus can work in you then you know that you can overcome anything. The bible says

(1 John 4:4 KJV) “Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.”

So you see that you have to know God and know that he will help you. Your focus should be on Him anyway otherwise we would become dependant on the means and not the source. What does that mean? If I don’t stay focused on God then I may begin to depend on my paycheck to meet my needs and my security, therefore, lies in my job or business (whoever pays you). That is, my hope is in my job or business. However, if I stay focused on God then even if I lose my job I know that God will sustain me. Why? My source has not changed only the means to the needs being met. God is still God but the way he will pay my bills have changed. Do you see? Therefore keep your hope in God focused on God and not the objects that God uses to bless you. Don’t let the blessings of the blesser become your focus. Get it? The way to apply your hope in any given situation is to put your hope in God. I must add that you have to learn to put your hope in God. You can’t expect to live your life any way you want and then expect God to deliver you when you get in trouble. God’s word has to be real to you before the situation arises (ideally anyway). You don’t wait until you are robbed before you take defensive actions to protect your possessions. You take actions in order to prevent the robbery. Get it? You don’t wait until you are in a situation to get into God’s word to take you through. You are in God’s word before the situation so that the word can come up in you during the situation. Do you see? Therefore you have to KNOW by the revelation that God WILL deliver you.

Your Vision

I asked earlier what you see during trials. Do you see yourself defeated or victorious? Do you know that you are an overcomer or are you “hoping” that you overcome? It is very important to see yourself victorious.

Before I go any further let me say that hope is not a problem solver. Hope is a goal accomplished. When we have problems then the goal is to solve the problem. There are also other goals that we are in the process of accomplishing which are not a problem related like starting a new business or buying a house. So don’t think of hope as a way of solving problems but a way of as an accomplishing any God-given goal.

When a runner is running in his mind he only sees himself/herself crossing the finish line first. When you take a test you see yourself getting all of the questions right. Whatever challenge is before you, you see yourself overcoming it. This is how people with hope will think. Once you have placed the vision of victory (whatever that victory is) in you, your whole system steps into gear and does all it can to accomplish this goal: Mind, Body, and Spirit. If you want that new home then you start to believe that you will have it and you confess it. You also assure yourself from the word of God and from His Spirit that it is OK to seek the house. You then begin to act on your hope by faith. Things will begin to happen and you will get the house unless you short-circuit the entire process. You see yourself living in the house. You imagine what type of furniture you will have and where you want to live. You even start looking at model homes to learn and evaluate things as though you were really going to buy. You are ready to buy relative to God’s kingdom, not the world’s. You have to see yourself in the victor’s seat before you actually physically sit in it. You have to draw the blueprint and then build the house not build the house somehow then go back and draw what you built. Too many of us want God to do first then we will follow. Faith does not work that way. You have to believe that God has already DONE it and you act on that by faith. Your hope then keeps the whole process going because it is your hope that keeps your faith working. Your faith needs hope so it can bring the vision to pass. Without the vision then there is nothing for faith to do. Without a confident expectation, there is no faith. Without patience, disobedience is knocking at the door.

Evidence

You must understand one thing relative to what I said above about being ready to buy a house. The world equates being ready on physical or mental grounds. That is, you are ready to buy a house when you have the money (or mortgage) to buy one. Being ready in the kingdom of God is when you have the title deed to the house already: Faith. Remember that your faith is the substance (title deed) of things hoped for (not seen). So when you begin to act on your faith looking at your hope, you may not have the physical or mental means of accomplishing it, only spiritual. You know that God has provided even though there is no physical evidence to prove it. This doesn’t mean that you go and sign your name on the dotted line because that would be wrong. You are buying the house in the world system so you have to abide by that system. That is, you can’t buy the house unless you have the finances available to buy it. You only have to wait for God to provide that physical evidence to buy the house. You, however, know that it is yours and you begin to act on it. Do you see what I mean? Too many of us wait for the oven to give us heat before we turn it on. That is, we wait for God to give us something when all the time it is our faith that will get it to us. This is somewhat of a paradox.

Scripture References

(Rom 5:2-5 KJV) “By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God. {3} And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience; {4} And patience, experience; and experience, hope: {5} And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us.”

There is a very important revelation in this scripture. Paul said that they rejoice in the hope of the glory of God. They see God’s grace and peace by faith and it is the hope of that Glory that envisions. They don’t actually see it physically but they still anticipate this glory of God. We also see how faith is the proof, title deed, or evidence of the things that are not actually seen. What we hope for is not seen. The bible says

(Rom 8:24-25 KJV) “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? {25} But if we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience wait for it.”

They didn’t see God’s glory physically or neither his grace. But they saw it in their spirit. They were convinced of God’s glory and his grace. Hope made God’s grace and his glory just as real to them as though they actually saw it or had some physical proof of it. It is the same with us. We have to treat the vision that God gives us or the visions that we have in God (to solve problems, make decisions, etc.) as real as we do physical things. Then our whole being and the spirit realm come together to bring what we hope for to pass by faith. Do you see?

Keep Hoping

Therefore, it is important that we keep a strong hope alive in our life. Peter uses the term “living hope” (1?Peter 1:3). If we lose hope then we have lost what we were hoping for. If we get focused on the natural then we will most certainly lose hope. Stay focused on God and His word. Stay focused on the kingdom of God and his righteousness and remain in hope. Confidently expect God to do what he said he would do and don’t give up. When you give up you take everything out of God’s hand. You close the door on God and therefore stop the entire process of you possessing what you hoped for.

The Method Of Keeping Hope

There is one sure way to keep the hope of God in you: Read and study his word with fellowship times and experience the power of God in your life. We have not talked much about the experience portion of God’s power in your life. However, because of the way we think, we have to experience things. I believe that this is the underlying principle when Jesus said, “these signs will follow those that believe….”. This is why you preach/teach and then demonstrations of God’s power that was taught is shown. There is no need to learn anything if we don’t experience it otherwise it is only head knowledge. We learn things from God’s word so that we can experience them or help others to experience them (we don’t experience everything). So stay in the word of God and receive revelation from his word. Keep his word before you so that you are always focused on him. In times of trouble and times of joy you will always hope in God. It all converges to one point. STAY IN THE WORD OF GOD AND LET THAT WORD AFFECT YOUR LIFE! Always hope in God. The more word in you the better.

(Rom 8:28 KJV) “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.”

CONCLUSION

This ends our study on hope. There are other aspects of hope that we have not discussed in this study such as the hope of the Gospel. The same principle of hope still applies; however, it is applied to a particular thing namely the Gospel. See yourself where God sees you. See yourself AS God sees you. Always hope. When trouble comes around and when the blessings are being possessed – HOPE. Never let your vision fade because it will keep you going. Without hope your faith is useless. Without hope, we don’t progress so hope. Put your hope your trust in God and he will see you through.

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HOPE
A Study On Hope As Revealed In The Bible
Prepared By: William R. Cunningham
April 10, 1995

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