Friday, November 18, 2011

FAITH VS HOPE: Distinguishing Faith from Hope


Many Christians don’t know the difference between Faith and Hope. They live in hope while thinking they are living by faith. Faith and Hope are not the same and we need to know how to separate Faith from Hope. As children of God, God has called us to live by faith and not merely live in hope. When you understand the difference then you will not be hoping for the promises of God when you should be having faith for them.

WHAT IS FAITH?

Faith is a confident belief in the power and promises of God coupled with a definite unflinching expectation of what you request of God based on His word.

Heb. 11: 1

Faith is the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen; it gives us assurance about things we cannot see. NLT.

Faith is an assurance or a certainty that what you believe God for will happen. It is not just an assurance, it is a confident assurance. This means, you are certain of getting what you hope or believe God for. It is the certainty in your heart while you have not physically seen what you believe God for.

WHAT IS HOPE?

Hope is an expectation or a desire that something might happen in a future time. It is an expectation without a guarantee that what you desire will happen.

WHAT DISTINGUISH FAITH FROM HOPE

1.       Hope is an EXPECTATION that something MIGHT happen in a future time.

Faith is a KNOWING that something WILL happening.

Faith is more than an expectation; it is a knowing within your heart that what the Word of God promises or what you require of God will happen. You are not just expecting it, you know it will happen. If you are only expecting that what you want from God will happen someday then you are merely hoping and hope will get you nothing. Hope will only keep you hoping and nothing more.

2.       Hope is a probability

Faith is not a probability

Anything that is probable is only likely to happen. What hope gives you is just a likelihood of you getting what you want from God. 
Something that is likely only has a tendency to happen. It may happen and it may not. This is what hope gives you. Hope is a probability. You may get the head or the tail. However, faith is not something that you know is likely to happen. You are sure in your heart it will happen.

3.       Hope is in the Future

Faith is Now

Hope puts your attention somewhere in the future. It says, “You may get it someday”. “It may happen for you”. It may sound something like this “One day it will get better”. All these are pointers to hope. It keeps putting things in the future. Faith believes he receives it now. Faith doesn’t say “It will happen for me some time to come”. It says “I receive it now”. Faith doesn’t push the answer to a time in the future as hope does. Though it may not see the physical manifestation yet faith believes and knows and confesses that he receives it now. Hope believes he will receive it some time to come.

4.       Hope is THERE and LATER

Faith is HERE and NOW

Hope puts the promises of God somewhere in the future. It says “When I get there I may get it”.  The promises of God are for here and now. Faith simply says “I receive this promise of God here and now”. If you are merely expecting that someday and somewhere in the future the promises of God might be yours then you are just hoping. Faith lays hold on the promises of God right here and right now. Until you believe and you are convinced that the promises of God are for you here and now you are not in faith though you might be hoping.

5.       Hope keeps you going

Faith gets you there

Hope simply offers you enough encouragement to keep you going but can’t get you to where you want to get to in the promises of God. This is all hope is capable of doing; it keeps you going without getting you there. Faith doesn’t just keep you in motion; it gets you into the experience of the promises of God. Hope can keep you going for twenty years without getting you into the experience of the promises of God. If you want to get into the experiences of the promises of the word of God what you need is faith and not hope. If you have been on the hope bus you need to move over into the Faith plane because the hope bus can’t reach the destination.
Hope only keeps you looking forward to the result without delivering the answer but faith brings the answer from the future to now.

6.       Hope lacks certainty

Faith has certainty

There is a kind of sureness about faith that hope lacks. Faith is in no doubt of getting the result from the word of God. Faith is sure that the word of God will deliver on its promises. Hope lacks this kind of assurance. Hope knows God has the ability to do what he promise but can’t boast of been sure that God will do it. Any time people utter statement like “I know God can do it”. They are merely hoping. Faith lays hold on the word of God and says something like “God WILL do it because He promised to” or “God has done it because we asked Him to”. Faith makes these kinds of declarations even though it has no physical evidence for what he is declaring. Faith is a kind of sureness about the word, ability and faithfulness of God.

Our God is a faith God and we must relate with Him with faith.

Hebrews 11: 6

But without FAITH it is impossible to please Him…

God doesn’t want people that are not sure, certain or convinced about His word, ability and faithfulness. He is not looking for people who are merely hoping. He wants a faith people. A people that know and are sure that there is no variableness (change) in Him James 1: 17. The bible says “God is not a man, that He should lie, nor a son of man, that He should repent (change His mind)” Numbers 23: 19. Since God will not fail on what He promises, we are to come to Him with confident assurance and be sure that we will receive what we require of Him based on His word. 

My friend, it’s time to stop hoping and start using faith. God Bless You.

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