6 And now, I, Moroni, would speak somewhat concerning these things; I would show unto the world that faith is things which are hoped for and not seen; wherefore, dispute not because ye see not, for ye receive no witness until after the trial of your faith.
7 For it was by faith that Christ showed himself unto our fathers, after he had risen from the dead; and he showed not himself unto them until after they had faith in him; wherefore, it must needs be that some had faith in him, for he showed himself not unto the world.
8 But because of the faith of men he has shown himself unto the world, and glorified the name of the Father, and prepared a way that thereby others might be partakers of the heavenly gift, that they might hope for those things which they have not seen.
9 Wherefore, ye may also have hope, and be partakers of the gift, if ye will but have faith.
As Moroni elaborates on Ether’s teachings about faith, he describes the relationship between faith and hope in two different ways:
- Hope is an essential characteristic of faith. (“Faith is things which are hoped for and not seen.”)
- Hope is the reward of our faith. (“Ye may also have hope, and be partakers of the gift, if ye will but have faith.”)
The first definition of hope is pretty clear. An essential part of having faith in Jesus Christ is believing that we will receive the blessings He has promised us, including the ability to overcome sin and death. As Mormon also taught, faith and hope are inseparable.
But Moroni goes on to describe another kind of hope, a hope which we can obtain only after we have exercised faith. Jesus Christ showed Himself to the inhabitants of this continent after they had faith in Him. In visiting them, He made it possible for others also to be “partakers of the heavenly gift,” which Moroni defines as the ability to “hope for those things which [we] have not seen.” He assures us that we can also receive this hope, if we will choose to have faith.
Today, I will remember that my faith can qualify me to receive the heavenly gift of a deeper, more durable hope. I will choose to exercise my faith, so that I can be a partaker of this gift.