As we walk in this world as those seeking to be Nearer to God, it is a tremendous comfort to know that others have gone before us. The path that we must walk is a path often taken. Throughout the history of redemption as found in the pages of Scripture, we see the guiding hand of the Lord in those who walked in faith. Some of these saints who have gone before us in the Old Testament are forever remembered on the pages of Hebrews 11. What unites all of those OT believers together was that they trusted God and they believed God’s promise, even though they did not see the fulfillment of God’s promise while they were living on this earth. They were those who were walking down a path to a heavenly country. We hope to pause each day and remember what God has done in their lives and the rich grace each of these “Heroes of the Faith” received.
This also is the month we remember the Reformation, when Martin Luther nailed 95 theses on the church door in Wittenberg, Germany. There began, by the Lord’s providence, a Reformation of the church, of which we are sons and daughters. The last week of October our devotionals will cover the section of Hebrews 11 dealing with the martyrs and there we will illustrate some figures from the Reformation who paid the ultimate price in standing up for the truth. As you open God’s Word each day, open also your heart, that He might shape and form it for His glory. After all, that is the great cry of the Reformation, Soli Deo Gloria (Glory to God Alone).
What is faith?
“Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” – Hebrews 11:1
Scripture reading: John 20:24-31
On this Lord’s Day, as we begin our month of looking at what is often called the “Heroes of Faith”, we need to ask the question, “What is faith?” Hebrews 11:1 gives us something of an answer. It is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.
In this way, faith described here is very different from what we saw in John 20. Thomas doubted and said unless he sees and feels Jesus, he will not believe. But, faith is not about seeing, it is about trusting. So, the question sometimes comes up, “Is faith therefore blind?” Faith is not blind because it has an object to look upon, namely the Lord Jesus Christ. He is the culmination of all the Old Testament promises. As we look at different men and women of faith, we will see that they were given a promise and they believed. They became faithful instruments to be used by the Lord because they trusted Him and took Him at His Word.
Each of the heroes of faith trusted the Lord and, though they were sinners worthy of condemnation, they became trophies of God’s grace through faith. They looked ahead to Jesus Christ and we look back to Jesus Christ. In doing so, the promises are sure; we are promised eternal life. Can we be sure of that? Yes, because the Bible tells us so.
Suggestions for prayer
Thank the Lord for the gift of faith. Pray that the Lord will strengthen your faith. Praise God today for Jesus, the object of our faith.
Rev. Steve Swets was born and raised in NW Indiana. He graduated from Mid America Reformed Seminary in 2007, and he is currently the minister at Redeemer United Reformed Church in St. John, Indiana. Get this devotional delivered directly to your phone each day via our RP App. It is also available in print, for purchase, at NTGDevotional.com.