Against Hope Believe in Hope

It is said about Abraham that he was one who against hope believed in hope. The promises from above concerning him becoming a father to many nations were confirmed in many fashions. But time passed and nothing happened so there must have come a time when Abraham faced such an inner turmoil and desperation that he lost all hope. The son of the flesh was thus the product of Abraham taking matters in his own hands when he saw no way out. However, that he against hope believed in hope tells us that he somehow persisted in hope despite losing all hope. This is a most curious paradox, but it gives hope to all of us who now and then lose hope despite what we have heard in our spirits.

What is hope? A definition might be that hope is tied to something we hope God will do in the future based on a promise he has given us personally, or it might be based on something we find in the scriptures which applies to our personal situation. Hope also gives substance and definition to our desires which we believe are channeled through us from above owing to the fact we are one spirit with our Father. We are also partakers of the triune fellowship which conversations give rise to hope concerning matters we face in the temporal.

To against hope believe in hope also means that along the road Abraham’s abilities to fulfill the promise had become null and void. His dead body and the deadness of Sarah’s womb were all outer circumstances that gave no hope of seeing the promise fulfilled. Absolutely nothing in the temporal confirmed or supported his hope. Against those bleak odds Abraham continued to hope in the son of promise, because he trusted in Someone larger than what the temporal offered.

We all know how Abraham fell on his face laughing when the promise was confirmed in his days of old age (Gen 17). Abraham even said: “”Shall a child be born to a man who is a hundred years old? Shall Sarah, who is ninety years old, bear a child?”And Abraham said to God, “Oh that Ishmael might live before you!” He birthed the son of the flesh while he still could trust his own abilities to perform, and when God came to confirm the son of promise Abraham even tried to persuade God to be satisfied with his own efforts in fulfilling the promise. In spite of Abraham’s evident wavering he is given this testimony: “He staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief; but was strong in faith, giving glory to God; And being fully persuaded that, what he had promised, he was able also to perform.”

The magnificent thing is that the precious blood of Jesus covered Abraham’s lapses into unbelief and flesh actions. God only saw Abraham’s faith, that is, His own faith in Abraham so that the righteous of faith could be imputed to him. Abraham learned through his sufferings the art of receiving so that he could receive even God’s own faith and thus stand firm in faith trusting the One who gave the promise.

The recounting of events as given in the Old Testament concerning Abraham’s life covers the temporal side of the story, that is, how his life presented itself humanly speaking. However, from God’s perspective some of those events do not convey the truth about Abraham as God saw Him, because God only saw a son in whom He was well pleased as confirmed by the Spirit’s testimony regarding Abraham:  “He staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief; but was strong in faith, giving glory to God.”

Perhaps more importantly, God, who is beyond time, saw the evolvement of faith in Abraham and delighted in Abraham’s progress until his faith reached its pinnacle when Abraham about to sacrifice the son of promise uttered the famous words: “God will provide for himself the lamb for a burnt offering, my son.” It is the matured faith that is God’s testimony concerning Abraham, the rest is the history about Abraham’s journey towards this climax. “Do not despise these small beginnings, for the LORD rejoices to see the work begin (Zech 4:10).

This note is dedicated all of us who have given up or almost given up all hope due to life’s many hard blows. It is the Spirit who gently and gingerly blows on the embers of hope in our spirits till the flame again warms our souls.

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12 Responses to Against Hope Believe in Hope

  1. brian coatney says:

    This is terrific. Nothing like that patriarchs for promises, faith, and the rugged ascent.

  2. Ashley Hong says:

    Nicely written Ole..Thanks for the encouragement.

  3. Fred Pruitt says:

    Hell is to have no hope. Only faith in the Living God has any hope of producing hope. The temporal cannot give hope, but only the certain promise of death. Last night I watched a show iin which Stephen Hawking “proved” scientifically “there is no god.” (His words, not mine.) It made me so sad for him. He probably has the greatest intellect of anyone living today, and he is devoid of hope. His conclusion to his theoretical physics came to this: “The universe created itself.” What a lonely universe for him. Lord, bring hope by your spirit to your precious child Stephen!

    “Why art thou cast down, O my soul? and why art thou disquieted in me? hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him for the help of his countenance.” (Ps 42:5)

    “For I know that my redeemer liveth, and that he shall stand at the latter day upon the earth:
    And though after my skin worms destroy this body, yet in my flesh shall I see God.” (Job 19:25-26)

  4. John Craig says:

    Wow Ole! A very special post indeed and a timely one at that as I really needed to hear it. Thank you SO much. Blessings

  5. Marmee Janet says:

    Thank you, Ole…and Fred. I am invited to cross the river once again. To walk according to the Spirit, His Life, His hope, His promises. To deny what ‘is’ according to my senses. To call those things that be not as though they are. Only God Himself could put such stubborn determination in a sometimes wavering soul.Your words make me think of a verse from a poem –

    Thus my soul before her God lieth still, nor speaketh more,
    Conqueror thus o’er pain and wrong that once smote her to the core,
    Like a silent ocean bright with her God’s great praise and light!

    I am so grateful for the written stories of the people in the Bible. We are all so very human and so very drawn, wooed, and loved into the Divine. Thanks, again!

    • Ole Henrik says:

      Thanks for this magnificent blessing, Marmee! You so accurately capture what I tried to convey when you write: “Only God Himself could put such stubborn determination in a sometimes wavering soul.” The poem was so timely! It felt like balm from above. Thanks! This is God’s love in action: “We are all so very human and so very drawn, wooed, and loved into the Divine.” Thank YOU for being such a tremendous blessing!

  6. Mary says:

    Hi ole,
    I am so blessed by what the Lord reveals through you ….. I am over the Top blessed by this wonderful encouragement of Hope … Thank you so much for sharing and please keep it coming 🙂
    Blessings Mary

    • Ole Henrik says:

      Dear Mary, thanks for your blessing 🙂 I am so grateful for your response and that you are encouraged and edified by my posts. I will continue to write as the Spirit leads 🙂 Blessings to you too!

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