Nov 13 Celebrating the Faith of Jesus in Us!
The Faith of Jesus in us is our connection to Abraham.
A Verse to Remember:
He kept on going because he kept his eyes on the one who is invisible. Hebrews 11:27b.
Gospel Story: John 8:39-59 Jesus reveals the importance of Abraham when speaking to believing Jews he says, “if you were really the children of Abraham, you would follow his example” (vs39) … “Abraham rejoiced as he looked forward to my coming. He saw it and was glad.” vs. 56
Today’s Scripture: Hebr 11: 13-19 13 All these people died still believing what God had promised them. They did not receive what was promised, but they saw it all from a distance and welcomed it. They agreed that they were foreigners and nomads here on earth. 14 Obviously people who say such things are looking forward to a country they can call their own. 15 If they had longed for the country they came from, they could have gone back. 16 But they were looking for a better place, a heavenly homeland. That is why God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared a city for them.17 It was by faith that Abraham offered Isaac as a sacrifice when God was testing him. Abraham, who had received God’s promises, was ready to sacrifice his only son, Isaac, 18 even though God had told him, “Isaac is the son through whom your descendants will be counted.” 19 Abraham reasoned that if Isaac died, God was able to bring him back to life again. And in a sense, Abraham did receive his son back from the dead.
The entire Jewish faith and identity is established through their connection to “Father Abraham”. Abraham is also a forerunner for those of us who know God through faith in Jesus Christ. Abraham modelled for us a righteousness with God that comes “by faith”… Scripture is clear, Abraham saw God’s plan in Jesus before we did! His faith/belief/trust in God’s promises is what made him right with God, in God’s eyes.
Jesus confirms this when he says, “Abraham rejoiced as he looked forward to my coming. He saw it and was glad!” Paul puts it into focus for us as well, “if you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s offspring, heirs according to the promise.” Abraham was the first one to get right with God by trusting God “by faith”.
Connecting our faith to Abraham is a really big deal? The author of Hebrew’s want his audience to know that if they truly want to be faithful to their jewish identity, a faith that is rooted and grounded in the revelation of God that comes through Abraham, then they truly need to embrace Jesus Christ as Messiah and walk like Abraham did in a righteousness (being made right with God) that comes “by faith”
And why might this connection to Abraham important to you and I? It’s a super important reminder that from from the very beginning, when God first chose a people through whom to reveal Himself, it has always been God’s desire that His people live by faith in Him (relationship) not in and by the law. The “Message” version of Galatians 3:5-10 makes the connection to Abraham and God’s heart clear:
5-6 Answer this question: Does the God who lavishly provides you with his own presence, his Holy Spirit, working things in your lives you could never do for yourselves, does he do these things because of your strenuous moral striving or because you trust him to do them in you? Don’t these things happen among you just as they happened with Abraham? He believed God, and that act of belief was turned into a life that was right with God.7-8 Is it not obvious to you that persons who put their trust in Christ (not persons who put their trust in the law!) are like Abraham: children of faith? It was all laid out beforehand in Scripture that God would set things right with non-Jews by faith. Scripture anticipated this in the promise to Abraham: “All nations will be blessed in you.”9-10 So those now who live by faith are blessed along with Abraham, who lived by faith—this is no new doctrine!