Hebrews 11:1-6 — The need for faith

Why is faith so important?

Because for whatever reason, it is the one thing that God desires from all of us as his creatures.

The writer of Hebrews tells us that it is for their faith that God commended all that came before us. (2)

More, it is our faith and that faith alone that will commend us before God even now. For from that faith, everything else springs: the love we have for him, the worship we offer him, and the obedience and loyalty that we have for him.

Think about it. If we do not believe that he exists, that he loves us, and that he is looking out for our best, will we love him? Will we worship him. Will we be loyal to him and obey him? Fear may take care of the latter three, but God does not want us to worship him, be loyal to him, and obey him out of fear. Rather, he wants us to do these things out of our love for him.

And for this reason, the writer of Hebrews tells us,

And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him. (6)

Think about Cain for a moment. Why was his sacrifice rejected? We don’t know all the details, but from what the writer of Hebrews tells us, it ultimately came down to the fact that his offering did not come from his faith in God.

Perhaps he gave his offering grudgingly, muttering in his heart, “Why do I have to give this to God?”

Perhaps God had required an animal sacrifice, and Cain thought, “Why aren’t the things I grow as a farmer enough? I’ll just give what I want to give.”

But whatever the reason, Cain failed to show faith in God. And because of that, God rejected his offering.

Abel, on the other hand, offered his sacrifice by faith. And because of his faith, he loved God, was loyal to him, and obeyed him. So when God saw his sacrifice, he gladly accepted it.

Think about Enoch. He was one of two people that never tasted death. (Elijah was another). God simply took him to be with him.

Why? Because “he walked with God.” When the Old Testament was translated into Greek, they translated “walked with God,” as “pleased God.”

In short, to please God, you need to walk in close relationship with God. But you cannot walk  in close relationship with God if you don’t believe he exists, believe that he loves you, and believe that he’s looking out for your best. It is simply impossible.

How about you? Do you want to live a life pleasing to God? Do you want to have his commendation in your life?

Then ask yourself: Do I truly believe he exists? Do I really believe he loves me? Do I truly believe he is looking out for my best?

Until you can answer yes to all three questions, you’ll never be able to truly please him.

Where is your heart today?

 

About bkshiroma

I'm from Hawaii, but have been in Japan as a missionary/English teacher since 1995. I'm currently going to a church called Crossroad Nishinomiya, an international church in Nishinomiya, a city right between Kobe and Osaka. Check out their website: crossroad-web.com 私がハワイから来ましたけど1995年に宣教師と英会話の教師として日本に引っ越しました。 今西宮にあるクロスロード西宮という国際の教会に行っています。どうぞ、そのホムページを見てください: crossroad-web.com
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