Crosses             LBG                  HateLove

Devotional - week of January 6, 2008


KEEP TALKING

 

By faith Abel offered to God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain, through which he obtained witness that he was righteous, God testifying of his gifts; and through it he being dead still speaks.  Hebrews 11:4

 

In the eleventh chapter of Hebrews, the author mentions a number of Old Testament individuals and some of their experiences of faith. The author mentions Abel first. He says this about him: “through his more excellent sacrifice made by faith he being dead still speaks.”

 

Since Abel’s faith is still speaking, then all of the experiences of faith mentioned in Hebrews 11 are still speaking. Hebrews 12:1 indicates this when it declares that the readers are “… surrounded by a great cloud of witnesses”—meaning all of the individuals of faith mentioned in chapter 11. The lives and acts of faith of all of them are saying to the reader, “Faith is the way to go.”

 

A departed person’s love that was expressed through great patience or generosity may be what still speaks to us. However, the Scripture never tells us that the people of love are still witnessing to us.

 

Why this emphasis on faith? People of faith know that God filled the heart of the person whose love is still speaking because of that person’s faith. By grace through faith, he received the love from God that characterized his life.

 

One reason the servants of God are reluctant about their life ending on earth is the thought that there is much more kingdom work to be done.

 

Hebrews 11 and Hebrews 12:1 tell us that we can continue to have a ministry on earth even after leaving this earth. We can keep talking in the same manner as those who are mentioned in Hebrews 11 and 12:1. We can join the cloud of witnesses in leaving the message that faith is the way to go.

 

It is thrilling to know that we will be a part of the cloud of witness for years to come as we demonstrate our faith to others by living out our union with Christ now.

 

A person who is struggling to live by faith in God should understand that living out our union with Christ removes the struggle.