What Faith Can Do
Good Lord, I recall the many ways You have blessed me through the faith of others, and I thank You.
Read Hebrews 11:20-31
 By faith Isaac blessed Jacob and Esau in regard to their future.  By faith Jacob, when he was dying, blessed each of Joseph’s sons, and worshiped as he leaned on the top of his staff.  By faith Joseph, when his end was near, spoke about the exodus of the Israelites from Egypt and gave instructions concerning the burial of his bones.  By faith Moses’ parents hid him for three months after he was born, because they saw he was no ordinary child, and they were not afraid of the king’s edict.  By faith Moses, when he had grown up, refused to be known as the son of Pharaoh’s daughter.  He chose to be mistreated along with the people of God rather than to enjoy the fleeting pleasures of sin.  He regarded disgrace for the sake of Christ as of greater value than the treasures of Egypt, because he was looking ahead to his reward.  By faith he left Egypt, not fearing the king’s anger; he persevered because he saw him who is invisible.  By faith he kept the Passover and the application of blood, so that the destroyer of the firstborn would not touch the firstborn of Israel.  By faith the people passed through the Red Sea as on dry land; but when the Egyptians tried to do so, they were drowned.  By faith the walls of Jericho fell, after the army had marched around them for seven days.  By faith the prostitute Rahab, because she welcomed the spies, was not killed with those who were disobedient. Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. All rights reserved throughout the world. Used by permission of International Bible Society.
ReflectHow does the writer introduce each of these "heroes"?
As we saw yesterday, faith in the present always has consequences for the future. This passage gives some concrete examples of how that worked out in the history of the Hebrew people. Faith in the here-and-now unlocks blessings for future generations (20,21). Faith allows ordinary people to overcome fear of the future (23). Faith helps us to forgo the pleasures of sin now for a future reward (24-26). The common theme is the future. Faith is an orientation of our minds away from the present (however good or bad it is) and towards what is to come. Faith in God opens the way for God to come through for you. Step out in faith and he will put up a wall of water for you to get you safely to the other side (29). Press on in faith and he will bring walls tumbling down for you to walk into your destiny (30). What’s Rahab doing here in this list (31)? Our original readers would certainly have asked the same question. She was a Gentile, a prostitute, an overt sinner. But despite her lack of pedigree, God saw this same kind of faith in her, a willingness to risk everything now for future reward.
What cherished things would you be willing to risk for Jesus? Your wealth? Your comfort? Your reputation?
Lord Jesus, help me be willing to risk whatever is necessary in order to live out my faith in You.
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