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The Excitement of Hope

... The apostle Paul was apparently as fond of athletic competition as we are, and he often used it to impart spiritual lessons: "Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training" (1 Cor. 9:25-27). "If anyone competes as an athlete, he does not receive the victor's crown unless he competes according to the rules" (2 Tim. 2:5). Similarly, Olympians are examples of Christian hope—with some important differences.

Christian hope, for example, does not have to filter out all that negativity, but in fact absorbs it and redeems it through Christ's death and resurrection. Our hope—for salvation and redemption and the kingdom fully realized—is not grounded in thoughts of our invincibility but of our vulnerability more..