FaithBro. David Chancellor
4/8/2001 6:00 PM
Hebrews 11:1, 2
We can never have too much faith. We desire an increase in faith, to be able to take that which is promised us and apply it to our life, that our life might bring glory to God. Faith takes in things that go beyond the ability of our mind to comprehend. Our desire is to have a good report. We want to live such a life that the record we have is a good one. Children find it easier to bring home the report card if it is a good report. We want our life to bring a good reflection on God and his cause.
The world we are on is here by the word of God. We are totally dependent on the word of God.
The writer starts in the beginning and goes down through time showing how faith works. Our actions need to be backed up by faith. Our offerings need faith that it is to God, in his will, and pleasing to God. We want to have an excellent sacrifice. For this to be so, a genuine belief in God must be behind the sacrifice. If you give the sacrifice backed by faith, your testimony can live on. If we are faithful to God, by our testimony, when we are gone it can be said of us "and he being dead yet speaketh."
Hebrews 11:5, 6
Enoch had the testimony "that he pleased God." We must have faith in God to have that testimony of pleasing God. It is wonderful to know that your life is pleasing to God. It is good to have God as your close friend. We must have faith in God to please God. Faith in God makes a difference in how we live. God can be our present help in time of need. It pleases God for us to have a close relationship with him.
Noah, by faith, received the warning of God. When God speaks to warn us, we need to take heed. Noah prepared for that which he had not yet seen - through faith in God's warning. There are many things we haven't been through, but we need to prepare for them - get and keep faith. We can have great anxiety about the future. We picture it certain ways and it doesn't always turn out like we think it will. We can be prepared for the future by trusting God and letting him take care of it. Let God work things out. He can provide for the future in the way he sees is best. We can prepare by having faith in God. We can be prepared for the Lord's return if we take heed to God's word.
Abraham obeyed by faith. We, also, need to have faith in God and obey him. Abraham obeyed, not knowing all that was involved. We may not always grasp all the issues. If God shows us something we need to be faithful to it. Sometimes we won't understand why. The Old Testament folks obeyed although they did not always understand the how or why of God's working. We must obey in faith. God knows why, and if we will be obedient, it is a good exercise of our faith.
Abraham didn't know where he was headed nor the living conditions. Abraham lived in a tent the whole time, but he was looking for a city. We might be looking for one thing and God's arrangements be a bit different. God's promises may be for further on. Abraham knew there was a city whose builder and maker is God, although he lived in a tent. We might have temptations and trials, but we have a reward. God has a reward for us. There can be blessings in the trials that encourage us to keep our faith in God. Don't be discouraged if things don't turn out like you had it pictured. These saw it afar off. They had faith it would happen through it seemed so far away. Don't let your faith be taken by discouragement. Be persuaded and confident in the promises of God. Get your arms around it and hang on. Don't let it be taken from us.
Hebrews 11:39, 40
The writer refers to those that obtained a good report by faith, but they didn't receive THE promise. Some of them died without seeing the fulfillment of all the things promised them. This, however, is speaking of Christ and deliverance from sin. We HAVE received the promise. We can by faith receive the promises. Put your faith to work. We have a better thing given to us. The promise of a Savior was given many times. Many people looked for the Savior before he came. We are enjoying the benefit they looked for, as we put our trust in him. We have had the opportunity to see the picture clearly. We have the full picture of what God can do in Christ. Christ showed us God could dwell in man and a holy, pure, sin-free life be lived. Our faith should be much stronger. We ought to be able to take it in.
If you want to see God - look at Jesus. Jesus by himself purged our sins. We can't save ourselves. We need to believe God. He can speak it and it be so. We want to stand clear before God by faith. We, too, can be a friend of God.