Hebrews 11:1 Defining Faith

Hebrews 11:1

Have you ever tried to define faith?

When I was a child, my mom would say, faith is believing that when you sit down in a chair, the chair will be there and hold you up (you won’t fall on the floor) even though you can’t see the chair as you sit down.

You might say faith is choosing to believe something is true, without being able to see it or prove it with the scientific method.

The Bible gives us this definition of faith.

Now faith is assurance of things hoped for, proof of things not seen.

Hebrews 11:1

With faith we can know truth about things we hope for and it’s proof of things we cannot see. It’s a decision to believe God’s promises to us.

Hebrews 11 gives us examples of 11 different people in the Old Testament and how their faith saved them.

Abel had faith that if he brought God a sacrifice according to God’s instruction, he would be made righteous.

Enoch walked with God and was taken to heaven without dying. Hebrews 11:6 says without faith it’s impossible to please God.

Noah had faith and built an ark though he had never seen a flood.

Abraham obeyed believing he would receive an inheritance.

Sarah received faith and was able to conceive a son.

Isaac gave the blessing to Jacob and Esau concerning their future.

Jacob blessed each of his sons.

Moses was hidden to be saved from the Pharaoh’s order. Moses also left Egypt following God’s direction in his life.

The walls of Jericho fell after 7 days of marching around the city and Rahab was saved.

All of these examples required great faith of each person to believe God’s promises to them would be fulfilled. And they acted on their faith.

Thousands of years after Abraham, Jacob, and Moses, we know the promise of the Messiah was fulfilled. We, too, look forward to the better reward of a heavenly country just as these patriarchs did.

What is faith? Believing and trusting what you know is true and acting on your belief with the assurance God will keep his promises to you.

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