November 11, 2008

Knowledge and Hope

Hebrews 11:1-2

May [you] be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which [you are] called.
Ephesians 1:18


Our scientific, information-based age wants us to think that knowledge is far superior to hope. In fact, the “enlightened person” considers hope to be a rather sentimental game people play on themselves when knowledge or “proof” isn’t available.

So we put on the lab coats of hardheaded realism in our search for knowledge. We may even consider people who live by hope to be rather weak sorts who don’t have the courage to pursue knowledge wherever it leads. In fact, we tend to think that knowledge and hope are opposites that can’t live in relationship to each other.

Anselm, an early church leader, however, rightly observed that we believe in order to understand. If we may paraphrase his words, we can also say that we hope in order that we may know.

The apostle Paul prayed that the Ephesian Christians would have the knowledge of the hope to which they were called. For Paul that hope was based in faith in Jesus as Lord and Savior.

The connection between knowing and hoping is not either/or; it’s both/and. Jesus brings hope and knowledge together. He is the ground of our hope and the fulfillment of our knowing.

knowing the Source of our hope provides certainty and stability in our lives.

Fill us, Lord Jesus, so that we may know you better and hope in you more deeply. Satisfy our longings with your presence. We pray in your name. Amen.

About the author — Harvey Brink

Rev. Harvey Brink has retired from active ministry in the Christian Reformed Church, having served congregations in Michigan, California, Iowa, New Jersey, Illinois, and
Washington. He and his wife Maxine live near their children and grandchildren in western Washington.

Start your day with quick daily devotions.

See God's love, power, presence, and purpose in your life every day!