Hebrews 11:29-32; 39-40; 12:1-3 (The Message)
29 By an act of faith, Israel walked through the Red Sea
on dry ground. The Egyptians tried it and drowned.
30 By faith, the
Israelites marched around the walls of Jericho for seven days, and
the walls fell flat.
31 By an act of
faith, Rahab, the Jericho harlot, welcomed the spies and escaped
the destruction that came on those who refused to trust God.
32 I could go
on and on, but I’ve run out of time. There are so many more
-- Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, David, Samuel, the prophets
39-40 Not one of these people, even though their lives of
faith were exemplary, got their hands on what was promised. God
had a better plan for us: that their faith and our faith would come
together to make one completed whole, their lives of faith not complete
apart from ours.
1-3 Do you see what this means -- all these pioneers who
blazed the way, all these veterans cheering us on? It means we’d
better get on with it. Strip down, start running -- and never quit!
No extra spiritual fat, no parasitic sins. Keep your eyes on Jesus,
who both began and finished this race we’re in. Study how
he did it. Because he never lost sight of where he was headed --
that exhilarating finish in and with God -- he could put up with
anything along the way: Cross, shame, whatever. And now he’s
there, in the place of honor, right alongside God. When you find
yourselves flagging in your faith, go over that story again, item
by item, that long litany of hostility he plowed through. That will
shoot adrenaline into your souls!