But Without Faith it is Impossible..
I just recently finished going through the Hall of Faith in Hebrews 11 with my students. Looking at each person individually, I came to see the Hall of Faith in a different light. Even though Hall of Faith has the word faith in it, I always saw these people as those who got it right and did the big things. I didn’t really understand what faith meant.
We studied each person listed with all their ups and downs, triumphs and mistakes. It was encouraging to see that they were all flawed people who were in Hebrews 11 not because they were great but because they believed God was great. If faith was about perfection, then Abraham, Moses, Samson, and David would have been disqualified. Abraham lied. Moses and David were murderers. Let’s not even get started on Samson and his women problems. In many ways, it was often those who had fallen in some way or another that were able to clearly see that faith is not about them but about God. These men were not perfect but they stepped out in faith.
Hebrews 11 starts off by telling us that “Faith is the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen; it gives us assurance about things we cannot see.” (Hebrews 11:1 NLT) In Hebrews 11:6, the author gives us another peek at what faith is.
“And it is impossible to please God without faith. Anyone who wants to come to Him must believe that God exists and that he rewards those who sincerely seek Him.” (Hebrews 11:6 NLT)
Seeking God often requires us to take steps of faith. Sometimes our steps of faith are small such as meeting our next door neighbor.Other times they are big when God is calling us to a new location maybe even overseas. The important thing is not how big the step is but that we take that next step of faith. Last year, it was a big step for us to move to West Africa. The culture was different. My job was a good fit but had so many things outside of my comfort zone. This year the steps seem smaller with me needing to take the initiative to invite people over more and connect better or finding ways to connect with the people here.
Even in the hall of faith, the steps of faith were different. Abraham went to a new land. Enoch walked with God daily. Noel built an ark. Rahab hid the Israelite spies. Your step of faith will look different than mine. The important thing is that we believe that God is who He says He is and that we are seeking Him.