What is Faith?
To the Christian, our Faith is a trademark of who we are. It is by our faith that we are identified, it is by our faith that we have our strength of conviction, and it is ultimately by our faith that we are judged. Our faith is everything. As a result, let’s take a look at the importance of faith by reading Hebrews 11 together:
1Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. 2For by it the people of old received their commendation. 3By faith we understand that the universe was created by the word of God, so that what is seen was not made out of things that are visible.
4By faith Abel offered to God a more acceptable sacrifice than Cain, through which he was commended as righteous, God commending him by accepting his gifts. And through his faith, though he died, he still speaks. 5By faith Enoch was taken up so that he should not see death, and he was not found, because God had taken him. Now before he was taken he was commended as having pleased God. 6And without faith it is impossible to please him, for whoever would draw near to God must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him. 7By faith Noah, being warned by God concerning events as yet unseen, in reverent fear constructed an ark for the saving of his household. By this he condemned the world and became an heir of the righteousness that comes by faith.
8By faith Abraham obeyed when he was called to go out to a place that he was to receive as an inheritance. And he went out, not knowing where he was going. 9By faith he went to live in the land of promise, as in a foreign land, living in tents with Isaac and Jacob, heirs with him of the same promise. 10For he was looking forward to the city that has foundations, whose designer and builder is God. 11By faith Sarah herself received power to conceive, even when she was past the age, since she considered him faithful who had promised. 12Therefore from one man, and him as good as dead, were born descendants as many as the stars of heaven and as many as the innumerable grains of sand by the seashore.
13These all died in faith, not having received the things promised, but having seen them and greeted them from afar, and having acknowledged that they were strangers and exiles on the earth. 14For people who speak thus make it clear that they are seeking a homeland. 15If they had been thinking of that land from which they had gone out, they would have had opportunity to return. 16But as it is, they desire a better country, that is, a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared for them a city.
17By faith Abraham, when he was tested, offered up Isaac, and he who had received the promises was in the act of offering up his only son, 18of whom it was said, “Through Isaac shall your offspring be named.” 19He considered that God was able even to raise him from the dead, from which, figuratively speaking, he did receive him back. 20By faith Isaac invoked future blessings on Jacob and Esau. 21By faith Jacob, when dying, blessed each of the sons of Joseph, bowing in worship over the head of his staff. 22By faith Joseph, at the end of his life, made mention of the exodus of the Israelites and gave directions concerning his bones.
23By faith Moses, when he was born, was hidden for three months by his parents, because they saw that the child was beautiful, and they were not afraid of the king’s edict. 24By faith Moses, when he was grown up, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter, 25choosing rather to be mistreated with the people of God than to enjoy the fleeting pleasures of sin. 26He considered the reproach of Christ greater wealth than the treasures of Egypt, for he was looking to the reward. 27By faith he left Egypt, not being afraid of the anger of the king, for he endured as seeing him who is invisible. 28By faith he kept the Passover and sprinkled the blood, so that the Destroyer of the firstborn might not touch them.
29By faith the people crossed the Red Sea as on dry land, but the Egyptians, when they attempted to do the same, were drowned. 30By faith the walls of Jericho fell down after they had been encircled for seven days. 31By faith Rahab the prostitute did not perish with those who were disobedient, because she had given a friendly welcome to the spies.
32And what more shall I say? For time would fail me to tell of Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, of David and Samuel and the prophets— 33who through faith conquered kingdoms, enforced justice, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions, 34quenched the power of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, were made strong out of weakness, became mighty in war, put foreign armies to flight. 35Women received back their dead by resurrection. Some were tortured, refusing to accept release, so that they might rise again to a better life. 36Others suffered mocking and flogging, and even chains and imprisonment. 37They were stoned, they were sawn in two, they were killed with the sword. They went about in skins of sheep and goats, destitute, afflicted, mistreated— 38of whom the world was not worthy—wandering about in deserts and mountains, and in dens and caves of the earth.
39And all these, though commended through their faith, did not receive what was promised, 40since God had provided something better for us, that apart from us they should not be made perfect. ~ Hebrews 11 (ESV)
The words of Hebrews 11 are many, but they are necessary for us all to read. It is in these words that we understand just how much faith the men and women of the Bible had in God. When I read these words, I was reminded that all of these men and women faced a multitude of success and failure in their lives, and that there were times when their faith kept them whole. Abraham was told to go off with Isaac and sacrifice him to God. Abraham went off to do just that, knowing by faith that God would not let him down, and would not take the son he had waited 100 years for from him and Sarah. And God acknowledged that faith by staying Abraham’s hand and providing a lamb for the sacrifice.
That faith is hard to quantify at times in our lives. When we lose a job, or lose a family member, or have some unexpected bad news hit us, it can be hard to remember that we need that faith. It is important to remember the words in Proverbs 3, verses 5 and 6, when we are not sure what or who to trust:
5Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. 6 In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths. ~ Proverbs 3:5-6 (ESV)
Do you count yourself as a Christian? If so, how is your faith? More importantly, how is your faith when the bad times roll around? Remember the words of Hebrews 11 and look to the heroes of the Bible for how and where they placed their faith. Now, please continue reading and praying our prayer requests and praises.
Prayer Requests & Praises
- Vonni starts us off with a series of prayer requests for a friend of hers and his son Brandon: This is not my son but my friend, Randy’s son. It’s terrible. Thank you, friends.
PLEASE PRAY FOR MY SON BRANDON! He was involved in a near fatal car accident this morning on his way to work at Costco. He was run off the road on a blind curve. He lost control of his car and hit a tree. He is currently in Neuro ICU at Spartanburg Regional Hospital. He has extensive damage to his spinal cord. He is paralyzed from his chest down. He needs a miracle right now. Please help him receive one by keeping him in your Prayers and good thoughts. Bless you. A heartbroken Dad, –Randy
- From Randy, update on Brandon this morning.UPDATE ON BRANDON’s CONDITION
I am currently at Spartanburg Regional Hospital Neuro ICU. Brandon is undergoing some extensive testing and an MRI. He can move his arms and hands. But cannot feel anything below his chest. More as soon as I know something. Thank you one and all for your Outpouring of Love , Support and Prayers
- Update on Brandon:*BRANDON’S SURGERY SCHEDULED
We just received a call from the Hospital. Brandon’s SURGERY IS Tomorrow, Thursday (9/28/17) at 1:30 P.M., 1ST Floor WAITING ROOM. No One will be able to see Brandon BEFORE OR AFTER SURGERY. I know you understand that it’s going to be an intense day for Brandon, Doctors Nurses entrusted with his Surgery and Care. His Recovery Time in the Neuro ICU is approximately 2 weeks. No idea as to when ANYONE can visit. Please Pray and look for my posts. I will not be taking individual calls or texts Tomorrow regarding Brandon’s Progress. I hope you can understand. Its going to be a tough emotional day. Thank you one and all for your love and support! —Randy
- Update on Brandon:
BRANDON had Surgery yesterday. He survived and is holding his own. He is back in Neuro ICU where he is sedated and resting. Thank you for every Prayer and dollar towards his care. —RandyThank you all for continuing prayers.
- From Randy, update on Brandon this morning.UPDATE ON BRANDON’s CONDITION
- Lynn’s uncle had an accident, fell, and needed hip replacement surgery. The surgery went well but he’s experiencing complications, please pray for Lynn’s uncle to recover completely.
- Please pray for my friend Lindsey, yesterday was the one year anniversary of her sister passing away. Please keep them in your prayers as they continue to walk forward but remember their loved one.
- Please pray for all of those that are lost, for those that need to regain their walk, and for those that don’t know what to pray or who to pray to. Please pray for all of the unsaved, for those that don’t think they need this salvation, and please pray for all of us that have salvation but are under attack from the evil one. Thank you all!
Now, please close with us by praying the prayer that Jesus taught His Disciples and us to pray:
Our Father, who art in Heaven,
Hallowed be Thy Name.
Thy Kingdom Come, Thy Will be done
On Earth as it is in Heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread
And forgive us our trespasses,
As we forgive those that trespass against us.
Lead us not into temptation
But deliver us from evil.
For Thine is the Kingdom, and Power, and Glory
Forever and ever. Amen.