Fr. Mesrop Parsamyan
GREAT LENT: DAY 16
“Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” Hebrews 11:1
Here the Apostle Paul defines “Faith” for us, saying, “Faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” (Hebrews 11:1) Faith, then, is the perfect trust towards a person or thing. Faith is a resolute mind towards certain realities, and trust in regard to those things. For example, we believe in our Lord Jesus Christ, we then resolve it in our mind that He is God’s only begotten Son, our Savior. This, therefore, signifies that we have entrusted our entire life under His care and have surrendered our lives trusting his providence, placing our hope in Him for our enteral life. Faith is then the assurance, or confidence, of the things, hoped for before they have become a reality. If we had the ability to see the things that which we hoped for, then this would invalidate faith and trust.
Our Christian hope is based on our faith. Hope awaits with confidence, and that is the overflowing of faith. Hope is expectation with confidence that it will become a reality. In this regard, hope applies to those realities which are not yet visible. As the Apostle Paul says in his letter to the Romans, “Hope that is seen is not hope; for who hopes for what he already sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, with perseverance we wait eagerly for it.” (Romans 8:24-25)
Faith and hope are two different virtues intertwined; they fulfill each other. The reciprocal exchange of faith and hope is best observed in the joy of children whose parents have made a promise to them. For example, when a father says to his child that they will have a field trip to the zoo, the child with faith trusts the word of their parents. This faith brings forth in the child anticipation with joy that is expressed as hope. Hope is that which looks toward the future in faith, but faith is the reliance on the hope of God’s word. Christians are people of hope and faith. We live “in the hope of eternal life, which God, promised long ages ago.” (Titus 1:2).
In the midst of the difficulties and struggles of this life, may God all the more strengthen our faith and hope, so that it empowers us to live our lives in ways that are pleasing to God. Leaning on the promises of our God, with unwavering faith and complete hope, let us direct our gaze towards the blessed promise, that one day our God will return to this earth to free us from every pain and suffering, sorrow and disappear, and then, we will eternally be in His presence.