TODAY'S WORD FOR Tuesday, February 05, 2019:
One admired for courage, fortitude or ability; one known for brave deeds; one regarded as a model or ideal.
These all died in faith.
For living to me means simply “Christ” and if I die I should merely gain more of Him.
Philippians1:20 (J.B. Phillips translation).
KNOWLEDGE AND EXPERIENCE:
All of us during our lifetime have had heroes in our lives. When we were younger we had many more heroes than now. Part of that was due to our young age and lack of maturity and life experiences. Over the years we have seen some of our heroes fail in some way and burst our so called bubble, because we thought they were the greatest. It is a great disappointment when someone turns out not to be what we thought they were.
In Hebrews chapter 11, we read about heroes of faith from the Old Testament. They include Abel, Enoch, Noah, Abraham, Sarah, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph, Moses and David. They are all called “Heroes of Faith” because they believed in God’s character, that He is who He says He is and will do all that He says He will do. By faith they believed in God’s promises even though they could not yet see any prospect that those promises would be fulfilled.
When you look to the Bible for your heroes in life you will find role models that you can confidently look to, to inspire you and motivate you to grow in your faith in the Lord.
The special quality of those that are listed in Hebrews 11 is that they all lived by faith. When God spoke to them, they listened. Not only did they listen, they obeyed and did what God asked them to do. They had faith that God would do all He said He would do even when there was no way they could see it to be possible.
If we pick these as our heroes and our role models and want to be like them, we need to do all we can to live as they did. They all had their times of failure but in their faith they found their assurance, their comfort, their daily guide, their motive for living and their support.
They believed the promises that came from God and lived their lives relying on these promises. They believed that God was almighty and the creator of all things. They believed that God was a God of mercy and love. These heroes were confident that God was faithful and true to His Word.
They agreed that they were foreigners and nomads here on earth just as we are as believers today. They were looking forward to a country of their own, a better place than where they were or had been. They all were looking for their heavenly home and knew that one day they would arrive there and live an eternity with their Lord and creator.
In the verse we have written above from Hebrews 11:13 we read that they all died in faith. They died in faith because they lived in faith. Hebrews 11:1 defines faith, “Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.”
Faith is more than belief. We can say we believe a chair will support us if we sit on it. The test of the strength of our belief -- our faith -- is having enough faith to sit on the chair. These men and women of faith had confidence that God would do all that He said He would do and acted on it. They could not see how God would do it but they had faith to believe what they could not see.
Dying in faith looks to the future. They died without fully receiving all that God had promised but they never lost faith that they had an eternal home in heaven and would spend eternity with God.
If you are looking for heroes in your life, look no further than these heroes we read about in Hebrews. You too can be a hero of the faith if you will look to Jesus, the author and finisher of your faith.
In Romans 10:17 Paul said, “Faith comes from hearing and hearing comes through the Word of God.”
Our memory verse for this week is found in Psalm 31:7.
I will be glad and rejoice in Your mercy, for You have considered my trouble; You have known my soul in adversities.
When we look for heroes to look up to, help us to understand that we need to look for men and women who lived lives of faith. Help us to live our lives daily by the faith we have in You so that others will see in us a person of great faith fully devoted to You. Help our family to remember that without faith it is impossible to please God (Hebrews 11:6).
These Family Devotional thoughts are written by Dr. Ken Phillips, Executive Director of America's Hunger
Solution, and his wife Dottie. Ken has had ministry positions
with The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, World Vision, Youth For Christ, World Opportunities International,
and World Bible Society. He also has consulted for more than 30 Christian ministries in management and stewardship
development. They have published a book called No Problems Only Situations that discusses the journey of their family.
Ken and Dottie have been married for 60 years, and have 6 children, 20 grandchildren, and 3 great grandchildren. Their
second book, TODAY'S WORD, includes 365 daily
devotionals and is now available for only $10.
Ken & Dottie Phillips
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