I would like to know what exactly is the blessed hope? I always believed that it is the appearing of Jesus Christ as the verse which mentions the blessed hope says further in. Today, as we spoke via e-mail of the Rapture, someone told me that our blessed hope is not the Rapture, but that it is our redemption. This confused me. Can you please explain what it is?
The phrase blessed hope can only be found in Titus 2:13. The Greek phrase Paul used there is “doxa epiphaneia” and he spoke of it as something we’re waiting for that will happen at the end of this present age (Titus 1:12). This present age is the Church Age that will conclude with the rapture.
When speaking of redemption Paul typically used a different Greek word, apolytrosis, which translates as a release procured by the payment of a ransom. He spoke of redemption both as something that has already happened (Ephes. 1:7) because the ransom has been paid, and as something that will happen (Ephes. 1:14) because the day of our release is still in the future.
Because the rapture can only happen in the future, I think in the context of Titus 2:13 the blessed hope more likely refers to it rather than our redemption. But since the day of our redemption will also be the day of the rapture, I don’t think it’s worth debating.