Hebrews 11:1-16 | Real Faith

by | Nov 20, 2021

READ Hebrews 11:1-16

“Now without faith it is impossible to please God, for the one who draws near to Him must believe that He exists and rewards those who seek Him.” (Hebrews 11:6)

These days, people have all kinds of ideas about what “faith” is: a warm fuzzy feeling, blind naivete, superstitious expectation of karmic forces, a wishful mantra, or a fairy tale to stave off nightmares. But faith in Jesus is none of those things. Instead of making up stories, we tell true accounts about thousands of people who have encountered Jesus alive and still making a difference. These accounts from real people comfort and encourage us because they are documented, reliable evidence. Our faith is not blind, naïve, or empty. Because that faith has a solid foundation, we can hang our hope (choices, resources, and lifestyle) on this stunning story. The active trust all these people place in God is more evidence that the intangible-now and the tangible-future are real.

There’s a lot we can learn from the stories mentioned in this passage and elsewhere in the Bible. God is working beyond our level of comprehension (Is. 55:8-9), but also guides and partners with us (Jn. 16:13). He wants us to do the right thing for the right reason (Dt. 10:12-13), not just look good on the surface (Acts 5:4). God is thrilled when we really trust Him (Mt. 8:10), because that makes possible everything else He wants to do in and with us (Mk. 9:23-24). We can follow God before we get the ‘whole picture’ and trust that He will work out the next stage of the journey (Acts 16-20). God transforms the world by interacting with people in different ways (Jn. 21:20-22), sometimes shockingly unusual but always restorative, and we get to tell more people about those interactions (Mk. 16:20). We can make a home here while also looking forward to going home to God one day (Jer. 29:4-7), when He will excitedly share the ‘big picture’ with us that we’ve been unaware of (1 Cor. 2:9).

If you’re struggling to believe that Jesus is real, it can help to explore the fairy tales that stir up hope and awe: Frodo and Sam back in Elrond’s house; Jill and Eustice inside the stable; Mossy and Tangle at the golden key’s door; Hero arriving at the Bright City…. The craving for meaning and eucatastrophe (a stunning happy ending) shows us that there IS meaning. But we don’t have to stop with fiction; we can listen to the true tales from our friends who’ve met Jesus. He is gripping their imagination, answering their questions, proving Himself reasonable, transforming their life, and leading them on the adventure of a lifetime. They trust in a very real Person who has proven Himself dependable – and you can too.

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