In 1966, U.S. Senator Robert Kennedy made an influential visit to South Africa. There he offered words of hope to opponents of apartheid in his famous “Ripple of Hope” speech at the University of Cape Town. In his speech, he declared, “Each time a man stands up for an ideal, or acts to improve the lot of others, or strikes out against injustice, he sends forth a tiny ripple of hope, and crossing each other from a million different centers of energy and daring, those ripples build a current which can sweep down the mightiest walls of oppression and resistance.”
At times in this world, hope seems scarce. Yet there is an ultimate hope readily available for the follower of Christ. Peter wrote, “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead” (1 Peter 1:3).
Through the certainty of Christ’s resurrection, the child of God has a hope that is more than a ripple. It is an overwhelming current of confidence in the faithfulness of the One who conquered death for us. Jesus, in His victory over death—our greatest enemy—can infuse hope into the most hopeless of situations.
My hope is built on nothing less than Jesus’ blood and righteousness; I dare not trust the sweetest frame, but wholly lean on Jesus’ name. Edward Mote
In Christ the hopeless find hope.
Peter wrote this letter to encourage believers in Asia Minor (modern-day Turkey) who were suffering because of persecution. He tells them that their sufferings serve a divine purpose by proving the genuineness and quality of their faith (1:7). These believers can “greatly rejoice” (v. 6) because they have “a living hope” that is eternal, guaranteed by the risen Christ, and divinely reserved by God (vv. 3-4). Suffering believers have the privilege of following Jesus’ example (2:21), participating not only in His sufferings, but also in His glory (1:7; 4:13). They have the opportunity and responsibility to tell others about their living hope (3:15). Sim Kay Tee