As we continue to look at faith–so far we see that without it it is impossible to please God. We have seen that people of faith show up when the going gets tough, the we have seen that it is inevitable, that faith impacts those whose lives we encounter. Finally, there is a certain set of things that faith accomplishes.
As one studies the folks that make up the faith hall of fame, by the world’s standard–they were not much to speak of. Wanderers–like the Israelites, prostitutes–like Rahab, mild mannered farmers–like Gideon, shepherds–like David, temple boys–like Samuel. None were “SuperHero” prototypes. Yet, in each of their lives, God accomplished mighty things because they trusted Him. Walls fell, nations rose, kingdoms were established and the salvation of the world accomplished–not because of their profiles; but, but all because of their faith. In each scenario, It was ultimately God who was highlighted–not the person he used.
In our time, if we–who are simple, allow God–who accomplishes great things; to simply take control and take the glory–then, like the people described in Hebrew 11, God can use us to complete his plan. We must brace for battle–our enemy does not like to be defeated. We will encounter trials, tribulations, taunts and temptation. We also must grasp that we accomplish most by stepping back and allowing God to work. At any point, if we try to take control or take the glory; then, we nullify our ability to be used by him. He simply seeks our availability–if we oblige, then he will provide the means and the result–and we will be blessed.
It won’t be easy, and it won’t be obvious–but, when God uses us to execute his plan–we will be a part of something so much greater than we could ever hope or imagine.
God Bless You
It was by faith that the people of Israel marched around Jericho for seven days, and the walls came crashing down.
31 It was by faith that Rahab the prostitute was not destroyed with the people in her city who refused to obey God. For she had given a friendly welcome to the spies.
32 How much more do I need to say? It would take too long to recount the stories of the faith of Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, David, Samuel, and all the prophets. 33 By faith these people overthrew kingdoms, ruled with justice, and received what God had promised them. They shut the mouths of lions, 34 quenched the flames of fire, and escaped death by the edge of the sword. Their weakness was turned to strength. They became strong in battle and put whole armies to flight.35 Women received their loved ones back again from death.
But others were tortured, refusing to turn from God in order to be set free. They placed their hope in a better life after the resurrection.36 Some were jeered at, and their backs were cut open with whips. Others were chained in prisons. 37 Some died by stoning, some were sawed in half, and others were killed with the sword. Some went about wearing skins of sheep and goats, destitute and oppressed and mistreated. 38 They were too good for this world, wandering over deserts and mountains, hiding in caves and holes in the ground.
39 All these people earned a good reputation because of their faith, yet none of them received all that God had promised. 40 For God had something better in mind for us, so that they would not reach perfection without us.