#DailyDevotion The Promise Of God Is What Drives & Sustains Faith
Hebrews 11: 30By faith the walls of Jericho fell when the people marched around them seven days. 31By faith the prostitute Rahab welcomed the spies as friends and didn’t perish with her disobedient people.32And what more should I say? There will not be time enough for me to tell about Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, David, Samuel, and the prophets, 33who by faith conquered kingdoms, did righteous works, received what was promised, shut the mouths of lions, 34put out raging fires, escaped death by the sword, found strength when weak, proved to be mighty in battle, put foreign armies to flight. 35Women received their dead back alive. Some were tortured; they refused to be freed, in order to rise to a better life. 36Others suffered mocking and scourging and were even put in chains and in prison. 37They were stoned, tempted, sawed in half, murdered with a sword. They went around in sheepskins and goatskins, needy, oppressed, mistreated. 38The world wasn’t worthy of them as they wandered around in deserts and in the hills, in caves and holes in the ground. 39By faith all these won approval but didn’t receive what was promised. 40God provided something better for us in order to have them reach their goal with us.
One of the things we note of these great people of faith is that they act. They act on the promises of God. God’s promises are a mighty creative thing creating a living faith in those who hear them. We see in this last list of people who believed God’s word not only mighty acts of victory, but mighty acts of faithfulness.
So we start seeing how we might live by faith particularly in verse 35 and following. By faith some were tortured and refused to be freed, in order to rise to a better life. Christians today around the world are given this choice: Renounce your faith in Jesus and live or keep it, suffer and die now. As the faithful of old they are looking forward to rise again to a better life and a better world and they remain faithful unto Jesus.
We see the faithful suffering mocking, scourging and prison, being stoned, tempted, sawed in have and murdered with a sword. They wear the homeliest clothing and go about needy and mistreaded by others. This happened before Christ. It had happened to those the author is writing to. It is happening to our fellow Christians throughout the world. Whole Christian populations of different countries being wiped out or driven out suffering the indignities of being imprisoned, sold off as slaves occurs even to this day.
But as the author writes, “The world isn’t worthy of them.” It is for their sake the Lord preserves the world, providing daily bread for everyone. These pray for those who are not worthy of them that they would repent and receive the good news, joining them in the procession of all the saints. These all have won the approval of God but have not yet received what was promised. We with them has the Lord Jesus Christ provided something better so we may reach the goal with them and they with us. The goal is to be raised from the dead in the glory of Christ Jesus and to inherit the New Heavens and the New Earth where righteousness reigns. The immeasurable grace of God and the innumerable riches of Christ is what we are hoping for. We look forward to seeing the Lord in our own flesh with our own eyes and to behold his glory in his temple. This is have offered and promised to us for the sake of Jesus Christ, his innocent suffering and death. May the Lord Jesus Christ keep us faithful to the end as those who preceded us.
Gracious and merciful Father, continually give us and all Christians throughout the world your Holy Spirit, that we may believe the promises you have made to us through your Son Jesus Christ, so we may endure all thing, scorning the promises of the world so we may receive a better life when we are raised to glory. In the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.