“Because of Their Faith”

39 All these people earned a good reputation because of their faith, yet none of them received all that God had promised. — Hebrews 11:39 NLT

Hebrews 11:32-40 NLT

All the people mentioned in Chapter 11’s Faith Hall of Fame were used greatly by God because they remained faithful to God through all of their trials and temptations. They earned a good reputation while they were here on earth, but none of them received all that God has promised them and us. The total fulfillment of the promises is yet to come. More of the promises were fulfilled at Calvary and after the resurrection. But the “better” thing that God had in mind for them and for us will only be given to all of us when Jesus returns to take us home to live with Him for eternity. By faith, we hang onto the hope of the complete fulfillment of all of God’s promises. Now we only get to see glimpses, but one day we will see all of it clearly.

12 Now we see a blurred image in a mirror. Then we will see very clearly. Now my knowledge is incomplete. Then I will have complete knowledge as God has complete knowledge of me. — 1 Cor 13:12 NIV

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” -Anonymous

“It Was By Faith” – Part 2

17 It was by faith that Abraham offered Isaac as a sacrifice when God was testing him. Abraham, who had received God’s promises, was ready to sacrifice his only son, Isaac ​– Hebrews 11: 17 NLT

Hebrews 11:17-22 NLT

Can you imagine the thoughts that must have gone through Abraham’s mind when God told Him to sacrifice his only son? Surely he wondered how God was going to fulfill His promise to make him a father of many nations, if he killed his son. But this matter was already settled in the mind of Abraham. This was the statement Abraham made in Genesis 22:5 

”​Then Abraham said to his servants, “You stay here with the donkey while the boy and I go over there. We’ll worship. After that we’ll come back​”​ (GW) (emphasis mine)

At that moment, Abraham didn’t know how God would do it, but he trusted God to provide and take care of both he and his son, Isaac. Isaac trusted God to carry out His promise through his sons, so he blessed both of them. Jacob believed the promise and blessed his 12 sons. Those 12 sons would become the leaders of the 12 tribes of Israel. Joseph believed that God would rescue his people, so he made them promise that when God led them out of Egypt that they would carry his bones back to the Promised Land and bury them there. All these promises were fulfilled and written down for us so that we might be believers as well. God is faithful!!

1 Kings 8:22-24 NLT

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” -Anonymous”

“It Was By Faith”

11 It was by faith that even Sarah was able to have a child, though she was barren and was too old. She believed that God would keep his promise. — Hebrews 11:11 NLT

Hebrews 11:11-16 NLT

God had promised Abraham that he would become the father of many nations, yet, he and Sara did not have a child. They were well past child-bearing age when God delivered on His promise to Abraham. Though, from a human standpoint, it was impossible, it was not hard for God to fulfill His promise. After all, when He speaks, the sound of His voice creates whatever He says. He spoke the universe into existence. So, bringing forth a child from an elderly couple would not be difficult for Him. This promise was passed down from generation to generation. Many of them died before the promise was realized, but they died knowing that God is faithful and He would fulfill every promise. They pressed on in obedience to God and arrived at a heavenly country where they will spend an eternity with God because they were faithful.

 20 But we are citizens of heaven, where the Lord Jesus Christ lives. And we are eagerly waiting for him to return as our Savior. ​ — Phil. 3:20 NLT​

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” -Anonymous

“They Will Follow Deceptive Spirits…”

1 Now the Holy Spirit tells us clearly that in the last times some will turn away from the true faith; they will follow deceptive spirits and teachings that come from demons.–1 Timothy 4:1 NLT

1Timothy 4: 1-5 NLT

As time passes and the return of Jesus gets closer and closer, we can expect that satan will increase his efforts to turn people away from the Gospel of Jesus. He will do this by increasing persecution, deception, and false teachings. We see these things increasing all over the world each day. More and more of our brothers and sisters in Christ are being imprisoned and martyred each day. We even read of things here in our country that earlier generations would have thought impossible. There are so many people whose consciences have become”seared” over. This speaks to a condition where people have gotten to the point that they feel no remorse for the wrongs that they do. Everything God created is good, but some of those things can be used for evil. Money. power, authority, sex were created to be used for good, but in the hands of some, they become evil. We must be very careful not to require more for a person to be saved than what Jesus requires. Believe that He was born of a virgin, lived a sinless life, was crucified on a cross, was buried, arose after 3 days and later ascended to heaven where He sits at the right hand of God. That is all that is necessary for salvation. Anything else, is doctrine or works, which may or not be good, but they certainly can’t save you. We need to spend time with Jesus each day so that we are not easily deceived.

Jude 1:10-13

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” -Anonymous

“Let Your Roots Grow Down…”

6 And now, just as you accepted Christ Jesus as your Lord, you must continue to follow him. 7 Let your roots grow down into him, and let your lives be built on him. Then your faith will grow strong in the truth you were taught, and you will overflow with thankfulness.  — Col. 2:6-7 NLT

How many times a day do we thank God for His goodness and blessings? Were you filled with joy at the dawn of a new day? Did you say, “good morning, Lord!” or “good Lord, it’s morning!”? Did you thank Him for keeping you safe through the night? Did you thank Him that you have eyes that can see the light of dawn? Did you thank Him that you have ears to hear the birds singing? Did you thank Him that you live in a country such as ours? Did you thank Him for the clothes you wear and also the clothes that you will probably never wear again? You don’t think that it is necessary to thank God everyday? Did you know that a lot of God’s anger at the children of Israel was because of their ingratitude for all that He had done for them? And He has done so much more for us. Do a word search and see how many times the words, “thank”. “thankful” and words that have similar meanings appear throughout the Bible. We should always be thankful because we could lose all these good things in a second.

Col. 3:15-17 NLT

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” -Anonymous

“People Telling Us About Your Faith in God”

8 And now the word of the Lord is ringing out from you to people everywhere, even beyond Macedonia and Achaia, for wherever we go we find people telling us about your faith in God. — 1 Thess. 1:8a NLT

1 Thessalonians 1:2-10 NLT

Paul, Silas, and Timothy had planted the church in Thessalonica and it had stirred up the Jews there, as well as the Thessalonians. Paul had been concerned about the young church and wanted to know how they were doing. Because of the unrest there, Paul had sent Timothy to visit with them and Timothy brought back a good report. This was the reason Paul wrote this letter complimenting them and encouraging them to continue in their work. The people that Paul, Silas, and Timothy witnessed to had received the Gospel with joy and were eager to spread the Good News. Their missionary work was reaping quite a harvest as the church there carried on the work of spreading the Gospel in Macedonia and Southern Greece. Are we being faithful in spreading the Good News of Jesus Christ to others? Are we blooming where we are planted? Are we laboring in the fields that are white with harvest? Each one should disciple one. That is our part in keeping the Word going and God’s church growing. 

2 These were his instructions to them: “The harvest is great, but the workers are few. So pray to the Lord who is in charge of the harvest; ask him to send more workers into his fields.–Luke 10:2 NLT

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” -Anonymous

“We Have a Great High Priest…”

14 Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has ascended into heaven, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to the faith we profess.— Hebrews 4:14 NIV

Hebrews 4:12-16 NIV

There are many times in our journey that we fall short of the mark. There will always be those times as long as we remain in these human bodies. When it comes to being tempted, we are very weak. Because Jesus went through the same temptations when He walked on this earth, He understands our failures. The devil will take those failures and beat us up over and over, telling us how we are no longer a child of God because we failed. But don’t let those failures stop you from repenting. Just remember that guilt and condemnation come from the devil, who is a thief and a liar. Conviction comes from the Holy Spirit and calls us to the throne room of God where we can ask for and receive His forgiveness. We can be very sure that we will receive mercy and grace from our Father. We will receive this not because we have done anything to earn it, but simply because of what Jesus did for us at the Cross. Even right now, Jesus is at the right hand of the Father interceding for us. The Father will not refuse anything that the Son asks from Him. So, hold on and press on because Jesus has paid the price.

Romans 8:1-4 NIV

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” – Anonymous

“For It Is By Believing…”

10 For it is by believing in your heart that you are made right with God, and it is by openly declaring your faith that you are saved — Romans 10:10 NLT

Romans 10:9-15 NLT

We, who have been chosen by God and saved by His gift of Jesus dying on the cross, have a great responsibility to carry the message forward. We have received the commission and we must go forth. Not everyone will be glad to hear the Good News and not everyone will accept Jesus as their Lord and Savior. But that does not relieve us of our responsibility to tell it everywhere we go. We are told that the angels in heaven rejoice greatly when a lost soul comes home. So, let’s make it our goal to keep the angels rejoicing continuously by leading people to Jesus Christ. Then when Jesus welcomes us home, we can just join in the festivities.

Luke 15:8-10 MSG

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” – Anonymous

“For By Grace You Have Been Saved…”

8 For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, 9 not of works, lest anyone should boast.– Ephesians 2:8-9 NKJV 

Ephesians 2:4-10 NKJV

Our salvation is a gift from God, we didn’t earn it by works and we didn’t purchase it with favor or money.  It was God’s plan before the foundations of the earth were laid.  As Paul said, if we boast, we must boast in Christ Jesus alone.  Does this negate works?  Not at all, we are saved to work, not by our works.  Just as it was God’s plan to send Jesus to purchase our redemption with His blood, it was always God’s plan that we would have a part in His kingdom work here on earth.  God has gifted each of us with a spiritual gift to be used in His work.  Some of us are preachers, others are teachers, others encourage, others have gifts of help.  The list of gifts is lengthy, because we all have a part in God’s plan and purpose.  Make a commitment today to ask God about your gift and how to use it in His plan.

1 Peter 4:7-11 NKJV

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” – Anonymous

“There Is Only One God,…”

30 There is only one God, and he makes people right with himself only by faith, whether they are Jews or Gentiles. — Romans 3:30 NLT

Romans 3:23-31 NLT 

“There is only one God”, the great “I AM that I AM”, Yahweh.  Yahweh is the third person form of the Hebrew root word, haya.  It actually could be translated as “I am present with you”.  God has been with us in one way or another ever since He created us.  No religion can make that claim about the god they serve regardless of what name they call their deity.  We come to know our God through Jesus Christ.  We are saved by grace through faith in Jesus Christ.  Jesus said there is only one way to the Father and that was through Him.  Jesus also said that to know Him was to know the Father as well.  John 14:6-7 NLT  The Holy Spirit calls all of us regardless of what we may call ourselves here on earth.  He calls us to come to Jesus, accept Jesus and become one of the family of God.  Once we have done this, the Holy Spirit abides within us.  Though we sometimes may feel lonely because of a lack of being with those we love, we can never truly be alone again.  We are a new creation, we have a new family and we have a new friend who is with us constantly.  This new friend is unique in many ways. He is really three friends in one.  He is our Father, our Brother and our constant Companion.  If we allow Him to do so, He can fill every void in our heart.

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” – Anonymous