Romans 8:24-25 (ESV)
"For in this hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience."
Hope is the expectation of something that we do not see - something that we have no proof will actually happen, but we have some reason to believe will happen if we just wait long enough!
So what is defiant hope? So much of what we see every day - so much of what we are told runs counter to the hope that we have in Christ and the promises He has given us.
Defiant hope stands in daring opposition to the lies of our enemy, the devil, and boldly challenges his plans for us! And despite what others might say, how we might feel, or even what we see, we “hold tightly without wavering to the hope that [we] affirm, that God can be trusted to keep His promise.” (Hebrews 10:23, NLT)
In Daniel chapter 10, we read an interesting account of a vision that Daniel had, but which he did not understand. It disturbed him so much, that he sought the Lord and fasted for twenty-one days to receive the interpretation. Finally, after three weeks, an angel appeared to him and explained to him the significance of the vision. But first, the angel told him that the minute Daniel had asked the Lord for the meaning of the vision, the Lord had sent the angel to Daniel with the answer. Yet the prince of Persia - a demonic spirit - fought with the angel and kept him from reaching Daniel, until Michael, the archangel, arrived to help, and relieved the angel so he could finally get to Daniel. Daniel could have given up hope of receiving the answer during those twenty-one days. Yet if he had stopped fasting, praying and seeking the Lord, he would never have received what he was asking for! He would’ve gone home, and forever questioned God’s wisdom, and why on earth God would give him a vision, only to withhold the answer! But Daniel did not give up.. He did not even give up on day two or three or even day twenty as many of us might have. He expected God to answer, and then he patiently waited for that answer!
As I said before, hope runs counter to our culture. We live in an age where people want to see proof before they will believe anything. Science, math, medicine, even the law, all require proof before we are allowed to say that something is true. My son is taking biology and geometry in school this year. When he makes a hypothesis, he does a scientific investigation to prove his hypothesis before he can reach the conclusion that his guess was correct. Before he can say with certainty that if A=B, and B=C, than A=C, he has to do a proof to verify he is correct. While this is a necessary process he needs to go through to pass the tenth grade, it is not how the Lord operates! The Lord asks us to first believe His Word, then expect Him to keep His promise to us, and wait for HIM to fulfill it.