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Bible Study Six

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By coming to know and to understand the usage of the word Hope in each passage given means then that we can come to a better understanding of what kind of hope is being expressed within the written scriptures and again where we ourselves are and stand in Christ. This in turn can give us a glimpse at the kind of Hope that we ourselves are leaning on and trusting in. This is where we need to see Jesus with Spiritual eyes and not just physical ones. With physical eyes, Jesus seems so distant, busy, slow, uncaring, cold, and sometimes barely a reality. However, when Jesus is seen with Spiritual eyes then He appears, present, available, powerful, in control, comfort, peace, joy, and giving assurance. The carnal or the physical eyes will quickly lose patience and hope in what God can and will do, but spiritual eyes are filled with hope and faith and want to see God be God in their lives.

       We still need to remember that the Old Testament is a book of Prophecy with life long lessons to be learned in each book offered. It is a reference as to what the times were like in those days, but still coming to the focal point that man is still the same today as he was then, the only things that have changed is today’s technological progress. Yet the heart, soul and life of man remain the same and that is the dire need for God and for His divine purposes in our lives for a successful existence. After all, it is not the Lord our God Who needs a Savior, it is us, fallen man who need a Savior and our Loving Father has presented that Savior, His name Is Jesus!

       The New Testament uses only two Greek words for the word Hope. Again the New Testament is the book of Fulfillment in regards to the Old Testament. Christ Jesus who has become our everything and our all in all - Jesus still remains to be Lord and still sits on the throne and reigns in the hearts of millions of people who have called upon Him and upon His redemptive qualities touching and saving people all over the world.

       New Testament Greek Words representing Hope:

       Elpizo means: To expect, to confide, hope for, trust.

Scriptural References:

Luke 6:34

Romans 8:25

1 Corinthians 15:19

1 Peter 1:13

 

 

       Elpis means: To anticipate, usually with pleasure, expectation or confidence – faith. This is the most common word used for Hope in the New Testament.

Scriptural References:

Acts 2:26

Acts 24:15

Acts 26:6

Acts 27:20

Romans 5:2

Romans 5:4

Romans 5:5

Romans 8:24

Romans 12:12

Romans 15:4

Romans 15:13

1 Corinthians  9:10

1 Corinth 13:13

2 Corinth 1:7

Galatians 5:5

Ephesians 2:12

Ephesians 4:4

Colossians 1:5

Colossians 1:27

1 Thessal 1:3

1 Thessal 5:8

2 Thessal 2:16

1 Timothy 1:1

1 Timothy 1:2

Titus 2:13

Titus 3:7

Hebrews 3:6

Hebrews 6:11

Hebrews 6:18

Hebrews 6;19

Hebrews 7:19

1 Peter 1:21

1 Peter 3:15

1 John 3:3

 

 

       We find here in the New Testament that most times the word Hope is founded on faith which should naturally accommodate Hope in which is found to be in Christ Jesus alone. Hope that is grounded in faith will not ever disappoint us, but will manifest itself enabling us to go through and accomplish what God has called or led us into. When we have hope properly established within our minds, hearts and spirit we will find that God will not fail nor forsake us, because our Hope and our trust is in Him and in His abilities. This is where faith accompanies Hope, because as the scripture says in Romans 8:24: For in [this] hope we were saved. But hope [the object of] which is seen is not hope. For how can one hope for what he already sees?” In addition we find that Hebrews 11:1 states similarly: “Now faith is the assurance (the confirmation, the title deed) of the things [we] hope for, being the proof of things [we] do not see and the conviction of their reality [faith perceiving as real fact what is not revealed to the senses].” This makes Hope and Faith twins, or inseparable sisters if you will, that work side by side and finally achieve what both Hope and Faith offer and can be found in the riches of Christ Jesus.

       There have been many times in my life where I have had the opportunity to express and to step out in faith filled with Hope in order to achieve whatever it is that God has called me to do. There have been situations that I have faced where faith and hope were the only two things that I had to hang onto. I did find and am still learning that not everything I hope for and so think I need or require is a reality. Even though I long to be righteous and as holy as I can possibly be on this side of the spiritual spectrum does not mean that I am entitled to all that I think I need or require. After all, the gospel is not about me and about the things I so want and desire, but the gospel is about Jesus and what He desires.

       Sincerely though we should give thanks and we should praise the Lord for what we did not get even though we had faith and hope in receiving it, for the simple fact that God has spared us from a greater hurt or tragedy somewhere down the line and that is why what we hoped for or had faith in did not come about. This is all part of the love and grace from our Heavenly Father who watches over us and keeps us in His most powerful hand. Now some people say, oh that is just an excuse because it didn’t happen for you. So with that in mind let us consider this another way and maybe then we will get a better understanding of what is being stated here.

As parents we watch over our own children and many times even our own little ones think they need or require something you know is going to seriously hurt them. Even though the child does not understand why what they have asked for or what they think they require may not be given to them, but it is because of your knowledge and wisdom and being the loving parent that you are you do not honor giving the child what they want or desire for the fact that your love overrides their wants or so-called needs. It is for this reason that we should give thanks to the Lord for His unending love and mercy in our lives because Jesus is forever watching over us and protecting us mainly from…ourselves!

       Romans 8:32 states: “He who did not withhold or spare [even] His own Son but gave Him up for us all, will He not also with Him freely and graciously give us all [other] things?” This is the Lord asking us a question now, the thought in mind is, “How will you choose to answer the Lord?” Indeed there are some of us in the faith of Christ Jesus who are weaker then others are when it comes to the reality and promises of God toward us. We each and individually have issues that need to be worked out within us until we are deeply rooted into both Hope and Faith regarding the spoken Word of God to us. This is also part of working out one’s salvation. First of all being established in the truth of what God has said and is saying to us His children. All things that God has spoken to us are also known as the promises of God and God cannot lie nor can God fail. This is where we need to discipline ourselves in the Word of God in order to claim what God has given to us.

       Romans 11:29 states: “For God's gifts and His call are irrevocable. [He never withdraws them when once they are given, and He does not change His mind about those to whom He gives His grace or to whom He sends His call.]” Once we can get past the flesh and its own understanding of what it thinks it knows about spiritual truths and have our minds spiritually renewed, touched and opened enabling us to learn to train and ground ourselves into spiritual truths regarding Who God is and again in what God has said in regards to our own personage and to His own divine attributes involved in our realities is when we will start to move most effectively in the spiritual world. What God has given will not be taken back by God. This is one of the concrete statements made by God to us the fallen and wayward that once God has established His spiritual gifts within us, that God is unrepentant toward those gifts. This is where we get spiritual security from Jesus regarding His grace and salvation which we have placed our hope and faith in. If God is willing to give us His Son and to have His own Son sacrificed as the Sacrificial Lamb in order to bring His children Home, what is it that God will hold back from you, when He has already given you the greatest and most priceless gift already? Anything outside of the gift of Christ and His salvation is peanuts in comparison!

Again if we consider 1 Corinthians 1:7 which states: “That you are not [consciously] falling behind or lacking in any special spiritual endowment or Christian grace the reception of which is due to the power of divine grace operating in your souls by the Holy Spirit], while you wait and watch [constantly living in hope] for the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and [His] being made visible to all.” This verifies that we lack nothing when it comes to the spiritual gifts of God and Hope and Faith that are also spiritual gifts naturally given to us the same as breath is. Ephesians 1:3 states: “May blessing (praise, laudation, and eulogy) be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ (the Messiah) Who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual (given by the Holy Spirit) blessing in the heavenly realm!” This again is a validation to the very thought that the riches of Christ Jesus are already within us if we have accepted Jesus as our own personal Lord, God, and Savior and we are washed in the Blood of the Lamb. We lack nothing, absolutely nothing. This is where we need to get our minds focused on our One and Only Saving Grace and the power within that reality.

       As long as Christ Jesus sits on the throne then we are conquerors in Christ Jesus because of what He has already done and has done for us while we were yet still sinners. Romans 5:8. The Spirit of God which is the Seal to the New Testament Covenant is also the very thing that gives life and power to our earthly tents or to our flesh. This is how our mortal bodies have life and maintain life and that is because of the indwelling of Holy Spirit within us. However for the person who is without Christ Jesus does not live, because they simply survive or are considered the walking dead. What hope do they actually have? What kind of faith does the dead require or need to rely on? Faith and Hope is for the living; for our God is the God of the Living. When we have the Spirit of God alive and active within us we then come to the understanding that the Spirit of God teaches us the deep things of God and what He offers to all of us who are trusting and have placed our Hope and Faith in Him. 1 Corinthians 2:10.

       This is all part of the renewing of our minds in Christ Jesus. Romans 12:2. Our flesh needs to lie down and die, so that we can resurrect in the Spirit and to the realities of the God that we serve in all of its fullness. Romans 8:26 tells us that God will help strengthen us in our weaknesses. Sometimes in this flesh it is not always easy to just lay it down and step out and do as God as asked us to do. Yet, this is what should be done in order to work the faith muscle and to allow God to be God in our lives. The natural man or the flesh will not easily bow to spiritual realities, in fact, the natural man will most likely reject spiritual truths and realities because they are mere nonsense or foolishness to him/her. 1 Corinthians 2:14. This is when the natural man attempts to do what only Holy Spirit can do and fail miserably time and time again.

       Hope is the physical substance directly linked with Faith the spiritual substance working together so that Jesus can be glorified in and through us and this to His glory and to our own benefit. Without hope there would not be a single person who could successfully stand. Even when there seems to be no hope at all, hope still thrives and is naturally apart of us. Within the concept of hope we will find that it is similar to an emergency reflex we all instinctively and naturally have within us called fear. This instinct is called a “Fight or flight” reflex or instinct. If you were to take the time to watch a National Geographic series on predators and prey, you will see that the prey fights for its life naturally and attempts to all that it can do to survive and to gain its freedom in order to live.

       The prey will naturally and instinctively hold onto hope with every measure of strength and energy that it can muster within itself in order to enable its freedom from the one attempting to destroy it. The prey may win its freedom and get away, and then again it may not, but either way, the prey will serve a purpose for a concept; for example getting free or it will become dinner for the predator who needs to eat and who also has the hope of finding and attaining its own dinner for survival. This is where Peter tells us that the Devil is like a lion prowling around for someone to devour! 1 Peter 5:8.

Even so, there is hope and it is an active substance and it is designed to carry us through, and to strengthen us and to help give us a future. Hope is spiritually linked with faith in order to be strong and effective, for without hope what would we benefit from doubt and hopelessness? What security can be found in either one of those negative aspects, namely doubt and hopelessness?

       This hopelessness is where we get the Hebrew Word Ya Ach from. Scriptural references for this word are found in Isaiah 57:10 - Jeremiah 2:25 - Jeremiah 18:12. So let us consider these three scriptures and bring them to light. Isaish 57:8-12 – Behind the door and the doorpost you have set up your [idol] symbol [as a substitute for the Scripture text God ordered]. Deserting Me, you have uncovered and ascended and enlarged your bed; and you have made a [fresh] bargain for yourself with [the adulterers], and you loved their bed, where you saw [a beckoning hand or a passion-inflaming image]. And you went to the king [of foreign lands with gifts] or to Molech [the god] with oil and increased your perfumes and ointments; you sent your messengers far off and debased yourself even to Sheol (Hades) [symbol of an abysmal depth of degradation]. You were wearied with the length of your way [in trying to find rest and satisfaction in alliances apart from the true God], yet you did not say, There is no result or profit. You found quickened strength; therefore you were not faint or heartsick [or penitent]. Of whom have you been so afraid and in dread that you lied and were treacherous and did not [seriously] remember Me, did not even give Me a thought? Have I not been silent, even for a long time, and so you do not fear Me? I will expose your [pretended] righteousness and your doings, but they will not help you.”

Jeremiah 2:25 – [Cease from your mad running after idols, from which you get nothing but bitter injury.] Keep your feet from being unshod and your throat from thirst. But you said, It is hopeless! For I have loved strangers and foreigners, and after them I will go.”

Jeremiah 18:11-12 – “Now therefore say to the men of Judah and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem, Thus says the Lord: Behold, I am shaping evil against you and devising a plan against you. Return now each one from his evil way; reform your [accustomed] ways and make your [individual] actions good and right. But they will say, That is in vain! For we will walk after our own devices, and we will each do as the stubbornness of his own evil heart dictates.”

       With these three Scriptures in place we can find a common denominator between them. The first one is “Attitude”, the second one is “Love for evil and unrighteousness”, the third one is “Stubbornness”, and the fourth one is, “Willing to neglect such a great salvation in order to please the already dead flesh.” This literally means to sever or to sear the spirit man within us. Rebellion and stubbornness are quick to do those very things. They deaden or manipulate our very reason to reason. Yet the Lord is saying, “Come, let us reason together.” Isaiah 1:18. We can become so desensitized to reality in order to replace it with another reality that appears to take precedence but holds no value. This is where “Hopelessness” thrives and flourishes within the heart and lives of people. It is only a matter of time before our hope is tested. When we say or claim to others that you are in the Spiritual family, the Lord tests His children with what they proclaim, and after the trial the true measure of wealth they attain is revealed. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.

       Again “Hopelessness” is not a natural thing but is completely opposite to hopefulness. Hope is a natural instinct built within each one of us as is any other instinct that we have and use on a regular basis. When this gets turned around and misplaced, misguided, misused, or misunderstood then we have given a toe-hold to Satan and his elect in order to play ping-pong with us, and we happen to be the ball! Just as the bible says that Jesus has allotted each one enough faith, Jesus has also allotted each one enough hope to work in unity with the faith that we have been naturally given. After all hope and faith are twin sisters and work respectively and in unison one to the other. Romans 12:3.

       The greatest and most influential reason for reaching a point of faithlessness or hopelessness is simply because of a lack of Knowing God for Who and for what He is and of course not accepting and coming to terms with who we are in Christ and who we are without Him! This usually comes from a people who are more carnally viewed then they are spiritual. They want and desire signs and wonders more then they do to be in the presence of God the Way He has called us to enter in. Many times these people are called fence riders, wanting and wondering, but not able to make a decision. The love for this world and for what the flesh offers are appealing and so they are not fully neglected. Commitment is lacking and doubt plagues them. Like the Lord says in Hosea 6:4 - O Ephraim, what shall I do with you? [says the Lord] O Judah, what shall I do with you? For your [wavering] love and kindness are like the night mist or like the dew that goes early away.

       The Lord tells us in the book of James to not be double minded, but to trust and to have faith in what the Lord said and will do. James 1:8. We all have choices to make people and we all have the right to what kind of Hope we would choose to walk in and under. If you want a successful and most powerful Hope, then add it with faith, which is real faith and based and founded on Love which is Christ Jesus and to be washed clean in His most precious blood and to be acceptable to the Father all of the time. This is the first step to walk blessed, holy, upright and in unity with the Lord our God and to come into right relationship with Him, because He first loved us and still loves us with an undying, never ending love that is pure and holy and good all of the time. 1 John 4:19.

For I know the thoughts and plans that I have for you, says the Lord, thoughts and plans for welfare and peace and not for evil, to give you hope in your final outcome. Then you will call upon Me, and you will come and pray to Me, and I will hear and heed you. Then you will seek Me, inquire for, and require Me [as a vital necessity] and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart. Jeremiah 29:11-13.

Shalom

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