Hebrews 11 is called the Hall of Faith chapter. But before listing the names of many of the great people of faith, the writer begins with a wonderful description of faith.
Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.Hebrews 11:1 (NIV)
Do you remember the feelings you had as a child before your birthday, Christmas, or a big vacation? You had the confidence and anticipation that you could count on something great happening. Why? Because great things had happened in the past.
The Living Bible puts it this way:
What is faith? It is the confident assurance that something we want is going to happen. It is the certainty that what we hope for is waiting for us, even though we cannot see it up ahead.Hebrews 11:1 (TLB)
You and I have never seen Jesus in person. We cannot see or touch the Holy Spirit. Nor can we prove scientifically that there is a Heaven. We trust God because we have the “confident assurance” that God keeps His promises. We trust Him because we have seen and experienced His power to change lives. We believe that He is who He says He is and He does and will do what He says.
We have seen how God has used people of faith to touch lives and make an impact all over the world.
And it is “by faith” we understand…
This is where the Hall of Faith verses begin. Here are just a few of the examples:
- By faith Noah built a large boat. v. 7
- By faith Abraham obeyed when God called him. v. 8
- By faith Sarah believed God would give her a child. v. 11
- By faith Moses kept his eyes on God. v. 27
- By faith the people of Israel went through the Red Sea. v. 29
By faith these people overthrew kingdoms, ruled with justice, and received what God had promised them. They shut the mouths of lions, quenched the flames of fire, and escaped death by the edge of the sword. Their weakness was turned to strength. They became strong in battle and put whole armies to flight.Hebrews 11:33–34
I love this encouragement about our faith in the LAB notes:
We do not believe in a void nor leap into the dark. Faith is reasonable, though reason alone cannot explain the whole of it. So use your mind to think things through. But leave room for the unexplainable works of God.
Let’s ask God to open our eyes and help us live each “by faith.”
A Prayer to Live “By Faith” With Hope and Confidence
Father, thank you for giving me the gift of faith. Thank you for the people who introduced me to You, who taught me about Your love, saving grace, and compassionate mercy. Thank you for allowing me to know and love Jesus.
Thank you for Your Word that shows us that you always keep Your promises. Thank you for the countless number of people who lived “by faith” and with by the power of Your Spirit, helped to establish Your Kingdom here on earth.
Thank you for making it possible for me to live with hope and confidence . . . for covering my life with Your mercy and grace.
Please forgive me for the times I have taken my faith for granted. For the times I have failed to SEEK You first or fallen short of loving You with all my heart, soul, mind, and strength. Forgive my foolish pride and selfishness and help me fully surrender my life to You.
Increase my faith. Open my eyes to see You that I might live each day “by faith” for Your glory. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.
God uses people who live “by faith” to change lives.
I’m guessing that like me, you have people who have blessed and inspired your faith.
Let’s take some time today to think about and thank God for the “Hall of Faith” people He has used to encourage us and point us to His love. People who have shown us the difference He can make in our lives. Those who have shared their stories of faith and lifted us up in prayer. The ones who have graciously shown us the love of Jesus.
On today’s note write:
With God’s help, I will trust God’s promises and live “by faith.”
May you be blessed today to walk in faith, live with hope, and celebrate His love.
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