“Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” (NKJV)
Faith is not a very popular term in today’s world. We are not used to believing in something or somebody without proof. If somebody asks us to trust him, we would – maybe, the first time. But if the fellow betrays that trust, the next time he asks us to put our faith in him, we would become hesitant. Faith seems to be out of place in a touch-and-feel world.
The writer of Hebrews seems to understand that. He wrote that ‘faith is assurance of things hoped for, a conviction of things not seen’ (ASV). But he does not just ask us to believe without knowing. He shows us examples of how people did it. The remaining of chapter 11 talks about ordinary people who were used by God for His glory. And they had faith.
Faith that built a ship during a time when there was no rain or even need for water transport.
Faith that left his birthplace and went to a place God showed him, never knowing where he was going.
Faith that made a mother out of an old woman.
Faith that was willing to sacrifice his own son – the son of promise.
Faith that got a prostitute from the path of destruction to the Messiah’s lineage.
The author of Hebrews first defines faith and then points out the practical implementations of the same. You should read the full chapter 11. Then read Hebrews 12:1 “Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us,“.
I guess the world was the same back then when the book of Hebrews was written as it is now. We all live in a touch-and-feel world. And God is reminding us not to get seduced by what we see or hear or smell or touch. He says, “Look, I know it is tough and here are people just like you who made it through. Let them inspire you.”
Pray in your own words: Teach me to have faith. Increase my faith. Let me not get run-down by what I see or hear in this world but help me look to You – the real Author and Finisher of my faith.
Daily Bible Reading: Genesis 16-17 (Old Testament), Matthew 5:27-48 (New Testament). (Click here to read)
(This plan is a yearly plan where you can read the full Bible in a single year.)
(ASV) American Standard Version Copyright © 1901 Public Domain