condition before God, from whom hope comes. (Rom. 5:2-5) It is placed alongside faith and love as one of the three qualities characterizing the Christian congregation since the disappearance of the miraculous gifts of the spirit that were present in the firstcentury congregation.—1 Cor. 13:13.
Qualities and benefits
Hope is indispensable to the Christian. It accompanies joy, peace and power of holy spirit. (Rom. 15:13) It promotes freeness of speech in the approach to God for his undeserved kindness and mercy. (2 Cor. 3:12) It enables the Christian to endure with rejoicing, no matter what the conditions may be. (Rom. 12:12; 1 Thess. 1:3) As a helmet protected the head of a warrior, so the hope of salvation protects the integrity of the Christian from being broken. (1 Thess. 5:8) Hope is a strengthening thing, because, while the anointed Christian yet on earth does not possess the reward of heavenly life, his desire with expectation is so strong that, despite severe trials and difficulties, he keeps on waiting patiently for the hoped-for thing with endurance.—Rom. 8:24, 25.
Hope helps keep the Christian in a clean way of life, for he knows that God and Christ, in whom the hope lies, are pure, and that he cannot hope to be like God and to receive the reward if he practices uncleanness or unrighteousness. (1 John 3:2, 3) It is closely allied with the greatest quality, love, for one having the true love of God will also have hope in all of God’s promises. And he will, additionally, hope the very best for his brothers in the faith, loving them and trusting their sincerity of heart in Christ.—1 Cor. 13:4, 7; 1 Thess. 2:19.
Superior to hope under the Law
Prior to the giving of the Law to Israel, the faithful forefathers of the nation had hope in God. (Acts 26:6, 7; Gen. 22:18; Mic. 7:20; 2 Tim. 1:3) They looked for God’s provision for life. When the Law came, it appeared at first that here would be the fulfillment of their hope. But, to the contrary, the Law exposed all as sinners before God and, by making transgressions manifest, condemned all under it to death. (Gal. 3:19; Rom. 7:7-11) The Law itself was holy, not bad; yet by its very holiness and righteousness it exposed the imperfections of those under it. (Rom. 7:12) As God foretold through the prophets, it was necessary for God to bring in a “better hope” through Jesus Christ, setting aside the Law, and enabling those putting faith in Christ to draw near to God.—Heb. 7:18, 19; 11:40; compare Jeremiah 31:31-34.
Hope for all mankind
The undeserved kindness of God is further magnified in that the wonderful hope that he made open to the spiritual brothers of Jesus Christ, to be joint heirs with him in the heavenly calling (Heb. 3:1), is also closely tied in with a hope for all mankind who desire to serve God. The apostle Paul, after outlining the hope of those who have the expectation of becoming the heavenly “sons of God” and joint heirs with Christ, explains: “The eager expectation of the creation is waiting for the revealing of the sons of God. For the creation was subjected to futility, not by its own will but through him that subjected it, on the basis of hope that the creation itself also will be set free from enslavement to corruption and have the glorious freedom of the children of God.”—Rom. 8:14, 17, 19-21.
According to Paul’s words here, Jehovah God did not destroy man’s forefather Adam at the time of his sin, but allowed men to be born from an imperfect father, with futility facing them through no deliberate fault of their own, but through their inherent imperfection. However, God did not leave them without hope, but kindly set forth hope through the promised “seed” (Gen. 3:15; 22:18), who is Jesus Christ. (Gal. 3:16) Doubtless because the time of Messiah’s first coming had been forecast in prophecy, the preaching of John the Baptist roused the expectations of the nation of Israel. (Luke 3:15; Dan. 9:24-27) Jesus fulfilled that hope by his presence. But the great hope for mankind in general, both the living and the dead, lies in the kingdom of Christ, when he and his joint heirs serve as heavenly kings and priests. Then mankind exercising faith will eventually be released from the corruption of imperfection and sin and will come to the full status of “children of God.” Their hope is reinforced by God’s resurrection of his Son more than 1,900 years ago.—Acts 17:31; 23:6; 24:15.
For all who desire life Jehovah God has provided his Word the Bible with its instruction and examples, so that all men may have hope. (Rom. 15:4; 1 Cor. 10:11; 2 Tim. 3:16, 17) This hope has to be proclaimed to others by those possessing it; in so doing the possessor of hope saves himself and those who listen to him.—1 Pet. 3:15; 1 Tim. 4:16.
(Hophʹni) [tadpole, hollow of hand].
One of High Priest Eli’s sons. Hophni and his brother Phinehas were “good-for-nothing men,” guilty of sacrilegious conduct and gross immorality. (1 Sam. 1:3; 2:12-17, 22-25) Because of this unfaithfulness while serving as priest at Jehovah’s sanctuary in the twelfth century B.C.E., Jehovah judged Hophni worthy of death, which befell him at the time the Philistines captured the sacred Ark.—1 Sam. 2:34; 4:4, 11, 17; see PHINEHAS No. 2.
(Hophʹra) [from Egyptian, “the heart of (the sun-god) Ra endures”].
In the Septuagint Version (Jer. 51:30 [corresponding to 44:30 in most versions]) he is called Ou·a·phreʹ. The A·priʹes of Herodotus has been understood by scholars to be Hophra.
Hophra was king of Egypt in the time of Zedekiah king of Judah and Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon. It is believed to be Pharaoh Hophra with whom Zedekiah formed an alliance for protection against Nebuchadnezzar, contrary to the commands that Jehovah had given years beforehand through Isaiah the prophet, warning Israel not to look to Egypt for help. (Isa. 30:1-5; 31:1-3) Nebuchadnezzar came up against Jerusalem in 609 B.C.E., but lifted the siege temporarily because of news that a military force was coming out of Egypt. The Egyptians disappointed Zedekiah, being forced to withdraw, and the Babylonians returned to destroy the city.—Jer. 37:5-10.
It was evidently early in the siege when the rulers of Jerusalem entered into a covenant with the people of Jerusalem to proclaim to all their Hebrew servants liberty, according to the Law. No doubt this was a belated and insincere attempt to get Jehovah’s favor, for when the siege was temporarily lifted, they showed their true attitude toward God’s law by enslaving their brothers once again.—Jer. 34:8-11.
At the time that the alliance with Egypt was made, Ezekiel, exiled in Babylon, prophetically said of Zedekiah: “But he finally rebelled against him [the king of Babylon] in sending his messengers to Egypt, for it to give him horses and a multitudinous people . . . And by a great military force and by a multitudinous congregation Pharaoh will not make him effective in the war.” The Egyptians were also compared to a weak reed, which, if leaned on, would give no support but would break and injure him that depended on it. (Ezek. 17:15, 17; 29:6, 7) It was apparently Hophra who was ruling in Egypt when Jehovah spoke through Ezekiel: “Here I am against you, O Pharaoh, king of Egypt.”—Ezek. 29:3.
Jeremiah foretold that Pharaoh Hophra would be given “into the hand of his enemies and into the hand of those seeking for his soul.” (Jer. 44:30) According to Herodotus, Hophra (A·priʹes) was highly arrogant. But his troops revolted and set up Amasis as rival king, later taking Hophra prisoner and finally strangling him to death. However, Josephus says that the king of Egypt was killed by Nebuchadnezzar some time after Nebuchadnezzar’s twenty-third year of