Having That Crazy Faith
It was by faith that Enoch was taken up to heaven without dying—“he disappeared, because God took him.” For before he was taken up, he was known as a person who pleased God.
And it is impossible to please God without faith. Anyone who wants to come to him must believe that God exists and that he rewards those who sincerely seek him.
It was by faith that Noah built a large boat to save his family from the flood. He obeyed God, who warned him about things that had never happened before. By his faith Noah condemned the rest of the world, and he received the righteousness that comes by faith.
Our key scripture speaks about our patriarchs in the old testament, and the kind of faith they had. In a previous digest, we discussed Hebrews 11:1, if you haven’t seen the digest, you can tap here to quickly read it up before heading back to continue this digest. Reading through Hebrews 11, there is a consistent pattern with the way the patriarchs of the old testament, who had faith responded to God. They took actions based on information they had received about God. Information that made them hope for something. If you recall, we had already established in the previous digest, that who we put our faith in today is Jesus, and what we hope for is the salvation of our bodies. We can hope for this now because Christ has died and we believe, but the people of old had never met Christ neither had Christ died, so what were they hoping for, and what was their faith on.
In our key scripture, verse 5 speaks about Enoch, and about how he pleased God by faith. In fact, Enoch was regarded as a righteous man by faith. What did Enoch put his faith on. Let’s see verse 6;
Hebrews 11:6 – And it is impossible to please God without faith. Anyone who wants to come to him must believe that God exists and that he rewards those who seek him.
Two things we can see there are that first without faith God cannot be pleased, meeting the criteria to please God is faith, and we also see what the people of old believed, they believed that God existed, and that in following Him there was an expectation. For them it was a promise from God.
Hebrews 11:13 – All these people died still believing what God had promised them. They did not receive what was promised, but they saw it all from a distance and welcomed it. They agreed that they were foreigners and nomads here on earth.
That was what they believed in. The scripture above however highlights something interesting, it’s that what they were expecting, or what they heard from God, they never actually received. Were the promises false, ‘No’, they were just ahead of their time. But truth is they believed those promises, they had faith in them and for that they were regarded as righteous even though they did not receive the promise. Abraham is spoken of here too just like Enoch.
Hebrews 11:8 – It was by faith that Abraham obeyed when God called him to leave home and go to another land that God would give him as his inheritance. He went without knowing where he was going.
And just like Enoch was also regarded as righteous because he had faith in the promise as well.
Romans 4:3 – For the Scriptures tell us, “Abraham believed God, and God counted him as righteous because of his faith.”
In the same way because we believe Gods message in the gospel, we are also counted as righteous.
Romans 4:5 – But people are counted as righteous, not because of their work, but because of their faith in God who forgives sinners.
All those spoken about in Hebrews 11 were declared righteous because they had faith in the promises though they never saw it. They also desired the salvation of their bodies, but they never got it.
All these people died still believing what God had promised them. They did not receive what was promised, but they saw it all from a distance and welcomed it. They agreed that they were foreigners and nomads here on earth.
All these people earned a good reputation because of their faith, yet none of them received all that God had promised.
For God had something better in mind for us, so that they would not reach perfection without us.
Verse 13 above says that they agreed they were foreigners here on the earth…meaning they knew they weren’t going to be on earth forever, but what next after their demise. They had the promise from God that ensured that even their afterlife too was settled, hence why they knew that their time on earth wont be forever, they had the promise, but they never saw it. That promise was Christ. Christ was the promise that would guarantee salvation of the body, and because he has died, we are extremely sure of our eternal life. Verse 40 above explains that only after Christ died could the people of old also have that salvation, and Glory to God we have it.
Hebrews 10:39 – But we are not like those who turn away from God to their own destruction. We are the faithful ones, whose souls will be saved.
The people of old were counted as righteous, and simply had a promise they had not seen a manifestation of, these made them do crazy things as were listed in Hebrews 11, that by faith, they did this and that, today we also have faith, and we are righteous too, however this time we have the promise. Let’s show the world the benefit of the promise in love. Let’s share this gospel message to them, let’s heal them, and let’s bring liberation to their doors. Like those of old, let’s act with some crazy faith, but this time, show people the love of God.
Thank you Lord for your gift of righteousness, and for the promised Child Jesus that we have received. We walk in His love and reach out to those we see in the world
Author – Gem