False hope and certain hope
Only a Christian has a right to hope, for only he has the power of God to give substance to his hope. The man who hopes in Christ is as safe as the rainbow-circled throne where sits the God who cannot lie. Such a man has a moral right to look upward and quietly wait for the fulfillment of every promise. Let him but see to it that his anticipations conform to the revealed Word of God and he has nothing to doubt or fear in life or in death. His loftiest flights of fancy cannot outsoar the promises of God to those that love Him and that hope in His mercy.
Because God wanted to make the unchanging nature of his purpose very clear to the heirs of what was promised, he confirmed it with an oath. God did this so that, by two unchangeable things in which it is impossible for God to lie, we who have fled to take hold of the hope offered to us may be greatly encouraged. We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure. It enters the inner sanctuary behind the curtain, where Jesus, who went before us, has entered on our behalf. He has become a high priest forever, in the order of Melchizedek (Hebrews 6:17-20).
Hope without the great High Priest is a false hope. How dare they look forward with cheerful expectation of blessedness to come who are not protected by the oath nor held steadfast by the anchor? What is certain about human hopes? Yet millions go on assuming that all is well with their souls when they have never known the forgiving love of God nor felt the kiss of His approval. They nourish the flimsy hope that they are not so bad after all and that “God’s a good fellow and ’twill all be well.” The worldly minded hope that they are children of God. The impenitent and unrenewed dream of the reward of the righteous and those whose nature fits them for hell pensively hope that they will enter heaven at last.
Earth is bearable because there is hope. Hell is unendurable because all hope has fled. Heaven is eternal beatitude because hope is there in radiant fulfillment.
“For you have been my hope, O Sovereign LORD, … I will always have hope; I will praise you more and more” (Psalm 71:5, 14).