“But without faith it is impossible to please God. For whoever would come near to God must believe that God exists and that He is the Rewarder of those who earnestly and diligently seek Him.” Hebrews 11:6
The Hall of Faith in Hebrews lists Enoch as a faithful hero. He walked in habitual fellowship with God and then he was taken up to heaven to be with God. Enoch did not taste death, something we would all prefer to do as well. The only indication of why this happened was because of his habit of being in fellowship with God.
What makes this truly unique was that his walk with God was before Jesus walked on the earth, before the jews were set free from slavery, before the covenant with Abraham and just before the flood. It begs the question, why would Enoch feel the need to walk habitually with God?
With all that we have, why shouldn’t we?
“Now faith is the assurance, the confirmation and title deed of the things we hope for, being the proof of things we do not see and the conviction of their reality – faith perceiving as real fact what is not revealed to the senses.” Hebrews 11:1 (Amplified)
Hebrews 11 is called the Hall of Faith because it lists the figures in the bible who demonstrated faith. Interestingly it starts with Abel, our short lived ancestor, and not with Adam his father. God first spoke to Adam after his creation, they walked in the garden together, yet Adam brought sin into the world through his disobedience. God gave Adam and Eve everything they needed to live a wonderful life. He told them there was only one thing they could not have, for it would harm them, but they could not trust Him and took it anyway. Today people often have everything they need to be happy and at peace, but they still long for that one more thing.
Looking at our first example of faith, Abel, he brought his sacrifice to God and it was accepted. The bible does not say Abel had spoken to God or heard from Him, he only went by what his parents had told him about God. Abel still trusted God to meet his needs and he brought his sacrifice before the Lord, it was accounted to him for righteousness.
I am going to continue my look at those faithful men and women who are chronicled in the bible, so that it will help me grow in my faith, I hope you will join me.
“Abraham said to his servants, stay here, the lad and I will go yonder to worship and we will come back to you.” Genesis 22:5
Having trouble waiting and trusting the Lord for situations in your life? There are many examples in the bible of people who exhibited faith. This verse in Genesis involves God telling Abraham to go and sacrifice his own son. Verse one in this chapter says God tested and proved Abraham. God was going to make Abraham a great nation and He needed a good faith founder.
The first step in his faith test was that he obeyed. He did not try an change God’s instructions or justify doing something different. Abraham rose up early, loaded up the donkey with firewood for the burnt offering, got Isaac and the two servants, then they headed out for the trip to the mountain, he did not take an animal to sacrifice.
The next step was when he told the servants to wait for Isaac and him, he told them WE will come back to you. Now God had already told him that he was going to be killing his son, but Abraham had faith that he would return with his son. He didn’t know how but he trusted God.
The final step was when Abraham placed his son on the altar, raised his hand with the knife trusting God in the process. Before his hand could come down on Isaac an angel called to him to stop him and a substitute was provided for the sacrifice.
God told him, “For now I know that you fear and revere God, since you have not held back from Me your son, your only son.”
Is there something we are holding back from God? Give it all to Him and He will bless you more abundantly.
“Be on guard, stand firm in the faith, be people of courage, be strong.”
1 Corinthians 16:13
Today is Meet You At The Pole day for students across the country. They are joining together to pray around the flagpole at their schools. They are praying for our country.
I pray for these young people today and for all of us, that we would be on guard, stand firm in the faith, be people of courage and be strong.
“Only let us hold true to what we have already attained and walk and order our lives by that.” Philippians 3:16
How far along are you in your journey with the Lord? No matter how long or short it has been you have grown in spiritual knowledge and strength. This verse reminds us to hold true to what we have already attained. Then to walk and order our lives by what we have learned, and the strength we have gained.
Paul also tells us in this chapter “forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead”, “I press on toward the goal to win the supreme and heavenly prize to which God in Christ Jesus is calling us upward.”
As we continue on our journey toward the Lord never look back or go back to where you have made progress from, hold true.
“He has shown you what is good, what does the Lord require of you? To act justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God.” Micah 6:8
I hear people say, what does God want me to do, what is His will for me. All I know to tell them is that He will lead them if they seek Him. While you wait for that though, do what He has told us to do already. Act justly, love mercy and walk humbly with Him.
Acting justly is just telling the truth, being fair with people, following the golden rule – which is to treat others as you would be treated. Loving mercy is, well as a believer you have already received mercy which is forgiveness, so be merciful and forgiving of others, we’re all human. I always like to say, let him who is without sin cast the first stone. Though that does not give us a license to sin, but should just cause us to have a gentler touch, a more loving touch with others. Finally, walking humbly with God means to put Him before yourself. WWJD is always a good thought process. What Would Jesus Do? Can’t go wrong with that.
Trust God to lead you in all the rest and He will.
“In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son.” 1 John 4:10
I haven’t always walked with the Lord. There was a time when I wanted to do my own thing, be able to do what I wanted to, when I wanted to, wherever I wanted to do it. I thought that would bring me happiness. (Gee I just relaized how many I’s and me’s I said!)
No matter what I did I still felt an emptiness inside, I was not happy. Even though I was living for myself I was still not able to meet all my needs.
Now I had been raised in church and knew about God. He was out there running the universe. I heard the stories about Noah and the ark, Jonah and the whale, and Daniel in the lions den. But those stories were so long ago, I never thought about God working in MY life today, I didn’t think God still did that. Even the story about Jesus being born and all that He did seemed so far away.
What made me really realize my need in life was when I thought about death. What comes after we die? All I could see was darkness and I didn’t like that, even though my siblings used to lock me in a closet when I was young. This was for eternity.
Then I heard a man on the television say “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son that whoever believes in Him will not perish but have eternal life.” Right then I got down on my knees and asked God to forgive me for looking elsewhere for happiness and that I wanted His eternal life. My emptiness was gone.
My prayer is that you too will seek Him for peace, joy, and happiness, and eternal life.
“He said, Come! So Peter got out of the boat and walked on the water and he came toward Jesus.” Matthew 14:29 (Amplified)
We can’t imagine someone walking on water, maybe Jesus, but not a regular person. So what allowed Peter to be able to walk on the water.
First, Jesus called him and he believed. Second, he stepped out of the boat. Third, he kept his eyes on Jesus. The story tells us that when Peter took his eyes off Jesus he began to sink.
Sometimes my little boat in life begins to rock in the storms and trials. When it does, I need to step out of that boat – stop thinking about what is going on around me – and keep my eyes on Jesus.
Remember we have a lifeguard that can walk on water.
“The battle is not yours, but God’s.” 2 Chronicles 20:15
This verse comes from a story in the bible where the Israelites were about to do battle with a large army. The Lord spoke to the king and told him, “Do not be afraid or dismayed because of this great multitude, for the battle is not yours, but God’s.” The king gathered the singers and when they went out to do battle he had them sing, “Praise the Lord, for His mercy endures forever!” When the people they were fighting heard the singing they became confused and defeated each other so that the Israelites won the battle.
If you are in a battle, and especially if it seems everything is stacked against you, do all you can to trust God and sing His praises. He will deliver you.
“Oh, that men would give thanks to the Lord for His goodness, and for His wonderful works to the children of men!” Psalm 107:8
People are quick to blame God when something horrible happens in life, but how quick are they to thank Him when something wonderful happens. We hear people say they were lucky because something wonderful happened, but say nothing about God or to Him.
How would you feel as a parent if your child only complained about how bad you were as a parent but never thanked you for all you did for them?
God is our Father and deserves our praise morning, noon and night even if you are only alive. Think of the many other things you can give God praise for.