Hebrews Chapter 11, often referred to as the Heroes of Faith chapter, is one of my favorite chapters in the Bible. The writer names many who chose to lead a life surrendered to God; ordinary people like you and I. They did not possess super-powered skills. Yet, they relinquished their life to God, allowing Him to do extraordinary things through their lives; accomplishing God’s eternal purposes. These Heroes of Faith trusted God through faithful obedience. They had faith not in themselves, but in God. They took God at his word. They believed God could do what he said He could and He would do what He said he would. “All these people were still living by faith when they died. They did not receive the things promised; they only saw them, and welcomed them from a distance. And they admitted that they were aliens and strangers on earth.” Hebrews 12:13 “These were all commended for their faith, yet none of them received what had been promised.” Hebrews 12:39. The Heroes of Faith realized their home was an eternal home not of this world.
I have read this chapter many, many times. As I read it today, verse 38 jumped, leapt, lit-up, and got my attention. “The world was not worthy of them.” Two ways to understand this verse. First – These people wandered in deserts and mountains, in caves and holes in the ground; by society’s standards they would’ve been looked down upon. Yet the Bible says the world was not worthy of them. The world was not worthy to have them in their presence. I wondered if God looking at my life would say, “The world is not worthy of Sandra’s presence”; I suspect not.
Second – “The world was not worthy of them”; exact wording, yet with a different meaning. Their heart, their life, all focused on heaven – the eternal, not here on earth. Living each day with an eternal perspective; the earth held nothing for them. They found nothing worthy in earthly existence. The Heroes of Faith, Abraham, Joseph, Moses and all those listed accomplished much for God while going about their everyday lives. And, I suspect, never realizing their names would be recorded as examples for all generations to come.
Where is my focus? Until recently on the earthly. Age tells me I don’t have tons of years ahead of me. The reality – none of us know if today is our last day on earth. How do we, how do I, live a life of eternal purpose? How do I live a day-to-day “heavenly/eternal existence” in a foreign land known as earth and not get caught up in the things of this world?
Until next time,
“See to it that no one takes you captive through philosophy and empty deception, according to the tradition of men, according to the elementary principles of the world, rather than according to Christ.” Colossians 2:8