Faith in Action
Abel, Enoch, Noah, Abraham- each of these people showed what it meant, and how, to be living faith! We will be referencing Hebrews 11:1-40 for this study.
An excerpt from Hebrews 11:1-3NIV
Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about 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.
Review of Story:
The book of Hebrews was known to be written sometime between 68-95 AD. The author of the book was thought to be Paul but there are differences in the writing style that create uncertainty to whom the author actually is. Some believe that this letter was actually a spoken sermon that was then written due to the lack of an introductory greeting. The main purposes of the book of Hebrews are as follows:
- Provide encouragement to the audience to continue maturing in their faith
- Warning the audience about going back to their old ways and to pay attention so they would not fall away
- To teach about the superiority of Jesus and how he died to save everyone
- Finally the purpose that we will focus on: those who were living faith.
For Hebrews 11 we are introduced with the meaning of faith and then throughout the chapter we are given examples of those who displayed and acted on their faith. The examples given are well-known and the acts that were taken by faith are described for each of the 11 that were described but there were also others who were referenced to live by faith.
Does this apply to me?
This chapter most certainly applies to the person who is struggling to understand what faith is and in need of examples of what faith looks like. It is for the one who needs a reminder and who wants to learn of the faith shared throughout the Bible in a single chapter. I would say that this is a good starting place on any study on faith and references many people that the reader can then follow up on.
For me personally, I ran across Hebrews 11 and felt that I was completely refreshed after reading about the exploits and leaps of faith that each person acknowledged had taken. Those listed had stepped out in faith and created history. I love this chapter because along with those listed Hebrews 11 includes us in the third verse! Among such amazing people you are also included!
What do I do now??
Hebrews 11 is a call to action and acts as an encouragement for those that are called to move but scared to do so. Before and during the reading of Hebrews 11 it is important to pray for guidance and discernment while reading this text. Questions that can be considered while reading can include:
- What is faith?
- For those who acted in faith do you believe the outcome was worth the act?
- Did those who chose to walk in faith still face trials? If they did, then how did they respond to these trials?
- What made it possible for each person to step out and act in faith?
- After reading Hebrews 11 what stands out most for you?
What I’ve found:
I came across Hebrews 11 when I was searching for the word trust. In this season of our lives we have been called to go on a mission trip to the Philippines in two months. Our finances are in a place where, as long as we complete the full amount of hours at our jobs, we are able to pay our bills when they are due and put a little towards our savings. Our trip altogether will be about $8,000 to include airfare, transportation, lodging, and food for each day the three weeks that we will be gone.
I knew that I needed to read the Bible and to find encouragement to continue forward even if, at the present moment, we can not see exactly how the trip will work out. Now when I put the word “trust” into the search bar of the Bible App I was reading through the individual scriptures that were found. I was drawn to the tenth scripture on the list which happened to be Hebrews 11:1-
Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see. (emphasis added)
It still makes the hair on my arms stand up to read that sentence because it is exactly what I needed when I needed it! Though we do not know how our lives will play out and we are unsure how we will get to point B from point A: God knows and God sees. We have pieces of the puzzle and, at times, base our entire life off of this one piece that we have been given. God knows how to connect each piece and he also is the master at placing us where we need to be when we need to be there.
What are your thoughts on Hebrews 11? Want more information about the mission trip? Leave a comment below or send me an email at email@example.com!