HOPE IS CERTAIN, NOT UNCERTAIN
Our use of the word "hope" is usually based on uncertainty. Suppose an engaged couple says, "We have an outdoor wedding planned for Saturday; we hope it doesn't rain." In saying this, they are saying that the possibility of rain is there, but their preference is for no rain.
But when the New Testament uses the word "hope", it is based on certainty. It's stating an absolute fact, but that fact hasn't occurred just yet. Let's go back to that engaged couple. Suppose it's Friday night, and one of them "I hope tomorrow is going to be Saturday," we'd think that a little strange. Of course tomorrow's going to be Saturday! It might rain, it might not. It could be cold, it could be hot. But no matter what, the day after Friday is Saturday, and nothing can change that. When Paul uses the word hope, he is doing something like that. He is stating a certainty that has not yet occurred.
Related Sermon Illustrations
Contributed by Charles R. Swindoll on Nov 1, 2004
Every time a boy went to his playmates house he saw his grandmother studying her Bible. Finally, he asked his friend about it. Why is you Grandmother always reading that Bible? He ...read more