This Scripture is clear. If we desire God’s approval we must have faith, the faith which trusts God in everyday circumstances of life and doesn’t waver when things don’t go our way. Biblical faith doesn’t have its origin in man but in God. It’s faith that responds to what God has said by acting on it. To agree with God’s Word is one thing. To act upon it is a different thing. The ‘people in days of old’ who won God’s approval were those who responded in faith to His word.
The first of the heroes of faith mentioned in Hebrews Chapter 11 is Abel. His offering was acceptable but his brother Cain’s wasn’t. Abel’s offering was acceptable to God, not just because it was a blood offering, whereas Cain’s wasn’t, but it was acceptable because of Abel’s faith. In obedience he gave his best to God with a sincere and pure heart. God sees the motives behind actions and looks for sincerity of heart.
So what is faith? Biblical faith is dynamic faith. It’s not a strategy for getting what we want from life. It’s not a means of attaining health and wealth. That’s cheap faith. Biblical faith is enabling faith. It enabled our heroes of faith to obey God and see His word fulfilled. By faith they were able to hold on to the promises of God with certainty. They had true ‘hope’ in their hearts that God would do the impossible.
The men and women ‘in days of old’ who had faith were enabled to obey God. By faith they overcame their deepest fears and pressed on though they couldn’t see the way ahead. Step by step they walked in obedience. True faith enabled the early Christians to follow Jesus in spite of being persecuted, even to death. Because they were looking for a kingdom that can’t be shaken, their faith didn’t waver (Hebrews 12:28). They kept it firm to the end.
We must have this same faith if we’re going to please God. Biblical faith is living faith because it’s faith in a living Person. This kind of faith is the antidote to worry and fear. It’s not the size of our faith that counts, but the One in whom we place our faith. Maybe today you have some doubts. Maybe God gave you a promise in the past that hasn’t yet been fulfilled. Remember faith is the evidence of things we can’t see. Hold God’s promise in your heart and don’t waver, even if God takes some time to bring it into being.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, thank You for Your faithfulness and for Your unbreakable word. Help me to trust in Your promises, and live my life today with my faith fixed firmly in You. When I can’t see the way ahead, please keep me secure in the knowledge that You’re trustworthy, and You will fulfil that which You have promised. I pray in the name of Jesus. Amen.