Faith and Commendation!
Scripture reading for November 12th: Hebrews 11:1-16
When we believe on Jesus Christ, we join a select group of individuals who by faith pleased God and laid hold of the promise of being close to Him for eternity. There is no other way to please God than to live by faith in His word!
“Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see. This is what the ancients were commended for. By faith we understand that the universe was formed at God’s command, so that what is seen was not made out of what was visible.” (Hebrews 11:1-3) Faith brings understanding of our creation, purpose and the fall into sin. When we read God’s word in Genesis, light of truth helps us believe and understand today’s problems.
We also look back at the record of those that came before us and see the outcome of their faith. The writer of Hebrews calls them the ‘ancients’. This record begins with Abel offering a better sacrifice than his brother Cain. Abel obeyed God’s revelation of a blood sacrifice for approaching Him.(Genesis 4:3-8) Cain did not believe. Abel was commended by God as a righteous man and is still speaking to us today through his record in Scripture. (Hebrews 11:4) Cain was mastered by the sin of unbelief and killed his righteous brother. He lost God’s blessing.
Enoch so pleased God that he escaped death by his faith-motivated actions. (Hebrews 11:5) Enoch walked with God and was a prophet to his generation concerning God’s coming judgment. (Jude 14-15) God simply took him to heaven directly as an example for us of the reward of faith-filled living! (1st Corinthians 10:11)
Noah was warned by God of a coming destructive judgment of the world by water. Because he believed God, he built the ark according to God’s direction. He and his family were saved out of all living on the earth as a testimony of the reward of faith. (Hebrews 11:7)
Abraham heard God’s word instructing him to leave his country and go to the land God would show him. Abraham packed up his family and set out, trusting God’s word. He ended up living in a tent in the land of promise, trusting that God was faithful. It is recorded that Abraham was looking for a city built by God! (Hebrews 11:10) Faith pleased God and this record encourages us today.