Faith, Hope, and Love (02/20/2013 update)Posted: 02/20/2013
I was doing a little research and found some interesting info on Faith, Hope, and Love. In the last blog update I raised the question “What is the difference between Faith, Hope, and Love?” It seems like this question was contemplated quite some time ago by Martin Luther (who lived from 1483 to 1546). I found an article referencing Luther’s teaching on this subject. The summary of this article is as follows.
Essentially Faith is the truth that we hold in our heart and mind. Hope rises in the will, in response to tribulation. Faith anchors us and hope is our guide through despair or tribulation. I thought the statement “By faith we begin, by hope we continue…” is very profound.
So, with this I examine how faith and hope applies to me.
My Faith includes my core beliefs as a Christian. I believe in the holy trinity (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit). I believe Jesus is the son of God. He became human, suffered, and died on the cross. Jesus paid for our sins by dying for us on the cross. Jesus conquered death by rising from the dead and ascending into heaven body and spirit. Jesus will one day come again. The foundation of my faith is that I accept Jesus as my personal savior and Lord. He paid for my sins and I will love him eternally. I will follow him all the days of my life. I will live my life trying to be more like him; applying the many lessons he has left for us to my life. My faith can be summarized in that I know Jesus has a perfect plan for me and His plan will prevail!
Grounded by this faith (and faced with tribulation) I am filled with Hope. My hope is that I will allow the Holy Spirit to guide me and keep me strong; following the path the Lord has laid out for me. My hope is that I will be cured from this cancer. I hope that I will be with my family for many years. I hope that our Father will teach me to Love my family and friends more with each passing day. I hope that my family will grow in their faith. I hope to one day be a grandfather. I hope that I will learn more about the many lessons that Jesus taught us while on earth and have the opportunity to learn from and with other Christians. I hope to grow more open minded, accepting of other’s beliefs and avoiding judgment of others.
Why is Love the greatest of these?
I found another article by theologian Mark D. Roberts that seemed to do a great job answering this question. As this article points out, scripture teaches us that God is Love (1 John 4:8). Scripture never says that God is faith or hope. Another point made in this article is that when find ourselves face-to-face with our God in heaven faith and hope will no longer be as important as Love. In the presence of God we will know him and our hopes will all be fulfilled. Love will be everlasting and therefore is the greatest of these.
And after this analysis I recall lyrics from one of the songs I would sing as a child…
“God is Love, and he who abides in Love, abides in God, and God in him”
God bless you and keep you forever!