Tamarajo is an avid Bible scholar who loves nothing more than seeking out the treasures in God's Word and sharing them with others.
Are you at the end of your rope? There is hope!
A little study of the Hebrew word for "hope" and its connection with a rope can give us something to hang on to. Many times when Hebrew words spell the same, one will illustrate the other. In this case, a rope will demonstrate for us the concept of hope.
According to Gesenius Lexicon, the very first definition of this particular word for "hope" (tiqvah-תִּקְוָה) is "rope" and secondly defined as "expectation."
Its root word "qavah-קָוָה" means "to twist" or "bind together," very much descriptive of a rope, also "to be strong," and "to expect." It is translated, sometimes, "wait," or "gather together." There are many concepts here. In this article, we will look at each of them and see how they all relate to hope.
Hebrew words most generally contain three root letters. Suffixes and Prefixes are added to form a new term. In the Hebrew language, God gives us three visual concepts that can be tied together to provide us with an illustration of something that can be grasped or held on to like a rope. We can depend on it being true.
Though one may be overpowered by another, two can withstand him. And a threefold cord is not quickly broken.
— Ecclesiastes 4:12
The three letters that make up the root word for hope, "qavah-קָוָה " are "qoof" קָ, "vav-וָ, "and "hey-ה." This word most often translates as "expect," "wait for," and "look for." From this, we can see that hope begins with expectations as in looking for something. Let's dig a little deeper using the pictographs.
"Qoof" Is a Sun Rising on the Horizon
The first strand of our rope is the letter "qoof." The illustration that comes with this letter is that of the sun rising on the horizon. It carries the concept of arising. The sun rising is a symbol of hope in and of itself. It is the dawning and expectation of a new day.
My soul waits for the Lord More than those who watch for the morning— Yes, more than those who watch for the morning.
— Psalm 130:6
There is only one with whom we may expect anything. There is no hope apart from Him.
But to you who fear My name The Sun of Righteousness shall arise With healing in His wings; . . .
— Malachi 4:2
Hope is about getting up and arising out of discouragement and despair. When we despair, we give up.
Shake yourself from the dust, arise; Sit down, O Jerusalem! Loose yourself from the bonds of your neck, O captive daughter of Zion!
— Isaiah 52:2
The sun rising is the giving of light, and the giving of light enables us to see things, possibilities, and solutions that we couldn't see before.
Hope sees and expects good to happen; it does not foresee disappointment.
Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us.
— Romans 5:5
"Qoof" also carries the concept of proximity.
. . . there is the bringing in of a better hope, through which we draw near to God.
— Hebrews 7:19
"Vav" Is a Nail That Connects Things
The second strand of the root word for "hope" is the letter "vav" and is represented by the picture of a nail. It carries the concept of connecting and establishing. "Vav" can connect us with the one who holds our hopes, expectations, and dreams in His nail-pierced hands.
"Vav" can also be associated with concepts of choosing and devoting. To expect and wait for good is something we choose and devote ourselves to. It doesn't always feel natural. And from this verse, we see that expecting and waiting require us to recall to our minds these things.
This I recall to my mind, Therefore I have hope.
— Lamentations 3:21
We must stay connected deliberately, as we see the Psalmist do in this verse.
Why are you cast down, O my soul? And why are you disquieted within me? Hope in God; For I shall yet praise Him, The help of my countenance and my God.
— Psalm 42:11
"Vav" is also about connecting heaven and earth. It was the nail-pierced hand of Christ that connected man to heavens resources.
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ
— Ephesians 1:3
We can have hope because we are not stuck with just our natural world and the things we can see for help. We have resources beyond this realm that we live in as long as we stay connected to Christ and abide in the vine.
“I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing.
— John 15:5
There is nothing of any value that can be accomplished in our life situations or circumstances apart from Him.
Hey Is a Window of Revelation
The third strand of our word rope is the letter "hey." "Hey" is a picture of an open window indicating a revelation, illumination, and to behold. We most often look out a window to watch and wait for something.
We won't expect something we do not envision or foresee. We will not wait for something we don't know or will happen.
Remember the word to Your servant, Upon which You have caused me to hope.
— psalm 119:49
With no vision, expectation, or revelation, we are without hope, wandering aimlessly through life and circumstance.
Where there is no revelation, the people cast off restraint; . . .
— Proverbs 29:18
Our expectancy is born from a revelation of Jesus Christ and our ability to behold Him, which causes us to hope.
Therefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and rest your hope fully upon the grace that is to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ;
— I Peter 1:13
The letter "hey" is about worship. It is about who we look for, not just what we look for. People and situations will disappoint us. Expecting from God and God alone is a form of worship, and hope requires us to worship the one we hope in.
My soul, wait silently for God alone, For my expectation is from Him.
— Psalm 62:5
It is about something that is seen with the eyes of our spirit but not yet realized in the natural.
But as it is written: “Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, Nor have entered into the heart of man The things which God has prepared for those who love Him.” But God has revealed them to us through His Spirit. For the Spirit searches all things, yes, the deep things of God.
— I Corinthians 2:9
Corralling Our Thoughts
This last verse brings us to the next concept of hope that deals with a rope. In the above definition, we saw that hope has to do with a gathering together. When I think of this, I think of a lasso and rounding up livestock and corralling them.
When it comes to hopelessness, our thoughts are generally running loose without restraint, as the above verse indicates. When it comes to hope, we must corral our thoughts and purposefully and mindfully direct where they are going. That is where revelation or Word from the Lord are imperative to keep our thoughts and minds framed with the hope He has given us in them.
You will keep him in perfect peace, Whose mind (thoughts) is stayed (framed) on You, Because he trusts in You.
— Isaiah 26:3
I included the literal translation in the above verse because I thought it was relevant to know that we frame our lives with thoughts. And our hopes and expectations are framed with these thoughts. Hope is like the frame of a house that faith is building.
The Measuring Line
The final aspect I wanted to look at is hopes relation to a rope as a measuring line relating to the idea of stretching something out. To stretch out a line or a rope. Hope requires us to stretch. We need to make room for whatever it is we are hoping for. This next verse expresses this idea beautifully.
“Enlarge the place of your tent, And let them stretch out the curtains of your dwellings; Do not spare; Lengthen your cords, And strengthen your stakes.
— Isaiah 54:2
The above verse demonstrates hope through the idea of making room for our expectations. It is broadening your horizons and perspectives. We give God lots of room to move by placing our hope in Him.
I also believe the measuring line speaks of boundaries. God has spiritual provisions and solutions that he wants to reveal to us and give us hope. We ought to seek Him for these revelations.
For since the beginning of the world Men have not heard nor perceived by the ear, Nor has the eye seen any God besides You, Who acts for the one who waits for Him.
— Isaiah 64:4
"Tav" Is a Sign
We have studied the root word for "hope," which means to expect, wait, and look for, and would like to add the prefix to this revelation. The only extra letter that is attached to make the word translate hope is a "tav."
"Tav" is a picture of a cross and is known as a sign or a seal of a promise. The promise is secured through the covenant sacrifice. It carries the concepts of completed work.
What brings our desire and expectation to a place of hope is expecting from Jesus Christ and believing in what He did for us on the cross in making access to the Father and His heavenly resources possible. It is guaranteed that what we hope for is assured.
Hallelujah!! Jump for joy the things He reveals to us consider it done. It is signed, sealed, and delivered!
“The secret things belong to the LORD our God, but those things which are revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may do all the words of this law.
— Deuteronomy 29:29
We have been tossed the life-giving rope of salvation in Christ that connects us with the heavenly Father, the source of all blessings. In Him, it is the dawning of a new day in terms of hope.
He invites us to bring everything to Him in prayer.
Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God.
— Philippians 4:6
Then, look out the window in confident expectation of His answer and provision.
Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful.
— Hebrews 10:23
Credits and Sources
*(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rope) ("Rope" refers to the manufactured material. Once rope is purposely sized, cut, spliced, or simply assigned a function, the result is referred to as a "line,"
© 2010 Tamarajo