ABOUNDING IN HOPE
“Now the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that ye may abound in hope, through the power of the Holy Ghost.” Romans 15:13
We, of all people, should be filled with hope. Describing our position before our salvation, the Bible uses the phrase “having no hope, and without God in the world” (Ephesians 2:12). Without God, there isn’t any hope. This is the sad state of most in our world. But, our text tells us that He is “the God of hope” and that we “may abound in hope.” It would not be possible to list all the benefits that are ours because of our relationship to Jesus Christ and His love toward us, but one such blessing is “hope.” This is a word that has lost some of its meaning in recent generations.
For many, the word “hope” simply means “a desire or expectation.” In the Bible, however, the word “hope” means much more than that. It means “a steadfast confidence or assurance.” It is one thing to hope something happens, as the word is often used today, yet it means something more as it is used in the Scripture. For instance, when Paul wrote of the blessed “hope” of Christ’s return, he was not speaking of a desire that He might come, but an assurance or confidence that He will return. God is “the God of hope.” He, through His promises, gives us the foundation and basis of great and growing confidence, and He wants us to “abound in hope.” We are the most hopeful of people. Because of this great “hope” that is ours, we can be filled “with all joy and peace in believing.” We could never be full of “joy and peace” without the confidence we have in Christ. People without hope are also without “joy and peace.”
We have an unchanging and eternal relationship with our trustworthy Creator, and we have His perfect Bible as our source of information. Our text gives us not only the benefits that are provided in Christ, but also the source of those benefits.
The “power of the Holy Ghost” makes these benefits a reality in our lives. It is through His indwelling presence and His activity in our hearts that we are able to enjoy the inheritance that we have as God’s children.
We also see in our text the activity that makes spiritual reality a part of our experience. These benefits are ours “in believing.” It is as we believe God’s Word and receive by faith His promises that we appropriate the many blessings He has promised us in His Word.