Hebrews 11: 1
“Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.”
Can we live without hope?
There is a story of a man who had reached his wit’s end and decided to climb on a rail high above a river and jump in to take his life. A police officer caught the man as he was jumping and pulled the defeated man back over the rail.
The police officer said, “Please give me five reasons why life is not worth living, and then I will give you five reasons why life is worth living for the both of us.” The officer said, “If I do not convince you that life is worth living then you can jump.”
The man agreed and after giving his five reasons why life was not worth living, the police officer gave his five reasons why life was worth living.
When both men were done sharing their reasons, they stood up, held hands, and jumped off the bridge together. This gallows humor is common in current culture.
What is not-so-funny is that many people live hopelessly. Even those who attempt to encourage others to hang in there; they too, often live in a place of hopelessness. It often amazes me how so many have very little or nothing to stand on—no hope.
As we meditate on this passage today, there may be someone who is vacillating between hope and hopelessness.
Why is that, when Jesus is our hope and our faith in him provides for us the substance necessary to continue on?
“Now faith is the substance of things hoped for,” the key word here is substance. The Greek word for substance is hupŏstasis, hoop-os´-tas-is; the word speaks of standing under a foundation. In other words it is the ground on which we build our hope.
So our faith is what makes us sure, and as we go through life facing whatever comes our way, we are still to hold to his promises no matter what.
The word substance also is a legal document to affect a transfer of property and to show the legal right to possess it. The promises made to us in the Word of God belong to us, and faith says, it is mine. This is not “name it and claim it,” but we simply live out the reality of what God’s Word promises.
Our faith is the foundation we build on and our faith is what makes what we hope for a reality.
Faith is our foundation and our reality—it’s our substance.
Question: What are you building on?
Lord, help us to rise above despair and exercise the hope you have made available to us, Amen.