Donna Gaines teaches on the Faith Chapter of Hebrews 11 during Week 7 of "Fresh Brewed Faith: A Study in Hebrews" from Bellevue Women.
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Week 7 – Faith Does
Now faith is the assurance (title deed, confirmation) of things hoped for (divinely guaranteed), and the evidence of things not seen [the conviction of their reality—faith
comprehends as fact what cannot be experienced by the physical senses]. Hebrews 11:1 AMP
1. Faith is – (v. 1)
Assurance or substance; confirmation that what God has spoken He guarantees. “Faith is the faculty of realizing the unseen” (F. B. Meyer).
“Faith is dependence upon God and this God-dependence only begins when self-dependence ends... Faith is the organ of the spirit that is able to ‘see’” (Manley Beasley, Faith Workbook, p. 1).
Chapter 10 closed with the Holy Spirit revealing that God is not pleased with those who shrink back, but we are not of those for we are “the faithful ones” (NLT).
But we are not of those who shrink back to destruction, but of those who have faith to the preserving of the soul. Hebrews 10:39 NASB
“Faith is not careless of time, but more mindful of eternity. Faith does not underrate the power of man, but she magnifies omnipotence. Faith is not callous of present pain, but she weighs it against future joy. Against ill-gotten gains, she puts eternal treasure; against human hate the recompense of reward; against the weariness of the course, the crown of amaranth; against the tears of winter sowing, the shoutings of the autumn sheaves; against the inconvenience of the tent, the permanent city” (The Works of F. B. Meyer, Loc. 14951).
When you were saved, you believed and then received. This is as it is with the Christian life. We believe and then we receive.
John 6:29 – Our job is to believe!
The prayer of Ephesians 1:15-18 – “I pray that the eyes of your heart be enlightened” (v. 18).
2. The Great Hall of Faith – (vv. 2-12)
Faith is possible to all classes of people.
Abel worshipped God. Worship comes first. We must learn to worship. We must offer ourselves on the altar (Romans 12:1) to be consumed by Him.
Enoch walked with God – “It is difficult to walk constantly with God, when wickedness is great on the earth, and all flesh has corrupted its way; but it is not impossible, for Enoch walked with God on the very margin of the Flood, and obtained the testimony that he pleased Him” (The Works of F. B. Meyer, Loc. 14970).
Enoch pleased God by his great faith. Because without faith it is impossible to please Him (v.6).
Noah worked with God. “Manley Beasley said, “You can’t work until you’ve first worshipped and walked. Then you are a co-laborer, not just a laborer” (Faith Workbook, p. 17).
3. Eyes to See – (vv. 13-16)
“All these died in faith [guided and sustained by it], without receiving the [tangible fulfillment of God’s] promises, only having seen (anticipated) them and having welcomed them from a distance, and having acknowledged that they were strangers and exiles on the earth. 14 Now those who say such
things make it clear that they are looking for a country of their own. 15 And if they had been thinking of that country from which they departed [as their true home], they would have had [a continuing] opportunity to return. 16 But the truth is that they were longing for a better country, that is, a heavenly one. For that reason God is not ashamed [of them or] to be called their God [even to be surnamed their God—the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob]; for He has prepared a city for them” (Hebrews 11:13-16).
4. Walk by Faith and Not By Sight – (vv. 17-31)
“So then, being always filled with good courage and confident hope, and knowing that while we are at home in the body we are absent from the Lord— 7 for we walk by faith, not by sight [living our lives in a manner consistent with our confident belief in God’s promises]— 8 we are [as I was saying] of good courage and confident hope, and prefer rather to be absent from the body and to be at home with the Lord” (2 Corinthians 5:6-8 AMP).
5. To Live is Christ and to Die is Gain – (vv. 32-40)
“Faith carries with it no guarantee of comfort in this world: this was no doubt one of the lessons which our author wished his readers to learn. But it does carry with it great ‘recompense of reward’ in the only world that ultimately matters...The ‘better plan’ which God had made embraces the better hope, the better promises, the better covenant, the better sacrifices, the better and abiding possession, and the better resurrection which is their heritage and ours” (F. F. Bruce, The Epistle to the Hebrews, p. 342 & 344).
We are going home!
Refuse to see the world as it is, but as it could be and as it one day will be!