I. Faith is the confidence in hope and assurance in the unseen
1. Faith: confidence in hope, assurance in unseen
- Faith is confidence in hope
- Faith is assurance in the unseen
- Do I have confidence in the hope of Christ?
- Do I live as one with assurance in the unseen or do I want “to be shown to believe”?
II. Bible is filled with many who lived by faith without receiving the promise
2. Forefather commended for faith
3. Believe in creation by faith
4. Abel’s faith in sacrifice, commendation, still speaks
5. Enoch’s faith: Pleased God, taken to heaven
6. W/o faith =/= please God b/c w/o faith would not approach God
7. Noah’s faith: built ark, heir to righteousness
8-9a. Abraham’s faith: Went to land, made home
9b-10. Abraham, Isaac, Jacob: Tent dwellers looking forward to City
11. Sarah’s faith: old, bore child
12. From this one old man came many descendants/nations
13a. These were living by faith @ death – did not receive Jesus
13b-16. Foreigners looking to eternal home: God prepared City
17-19. Abraham trusted God enough to obey: Isaac as sacrifice
20. By faith Isaac blessed Jacob & Esau
21. By faith Jacob blessed Joseph’s sons
22. By faith Jacob instructed his bones home @ exodus
23. By faith infant Moses was hid
24-26. By faith Moses chose life of Israelite over son of Pharaoh
27. By faith Moses left Egypt
28. By faith Moses kept the passover
29. By faith Israelites crossed Red Sea, Egyptians drowned
30. By faith walls of Jericho fell
31. By faith Rahab saved
32-38. By faith many many many more acts
- Throughout the ages there have been the faithful
- All faithful were commended for their faith
- None received what was promised (before Jesus)
- Is my faith like that of Abel, Enoch, Noah, Abraham?
- They lived by faith without Jesus, how is the gift of Christ making me stronger in my faith?
- By faith, would I leave my home? By faith would I shelter others? By faith, am I giving and receiving blessings?
III. God’s plan is for something better so together all faithful “be made perfect”
39-40.Commended for faith – Together w/ us be made perfect
- God planned something better
- Faithful – all together – would be made perfect
- Am I gratefully accepting God’s “better plan” or am I trying to make my own plans?
- Am I yielding daily to God’s transformation of my life to “be made perfect”
How many times have we heard things like, “If I could only see Jesus, then I would believe.” or “I just need some proof to have faith.”
But, Hebrews 11 explains that would not be faith. Faith includes an element of trust. Faith includes an element of choice. We know that when Christ returns He will be recognized by everyone still living. Every knee will bow and every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord (Rom 14). Even the demons that there is one God (James 2:19). But that does not mean these groups of people are living by faith – in fact we know from the scriptures that they are not.
But for the faithful, God has planned something better: To take those who have been made holy (sanctified, set apart for a special purpose in the service of the Lord), and to make them perfect.
I don’t feel perfect. I don’t live a perfect life. But I recognize that God is transforming me. Not just to make me a little bit better than what I am today, but for the ultimate goal of giving me a new life and a new body so that I can live with Him in his holy presence in the eternal city that He has build, forever.