Faith is not just a feeling or conviction, it is a “Noun of Action”
- Noun of action is a special kind of noun that has a verb for root word – E.g. love, belief, faith. These nouns demand actions before they can exist.
- In James 2:18, But someone will say, “you have faith, and I have works” show me your faith without your works, and I will show you my faith by my work.
- James also said in James 2:17 that Faith without work is dead. It is not faith
Hebrews 11:1 Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see
- Many people quote this verse without the first word “Now”, but “now” suggest that the verse is just a conclusion of what was written previously in Hebrew 10: 19 – 39 (Read Bible)
1) Hold unswervingly (resolute, firm) to our hope (Hebrew 10:23)
- Jesus’s Ultimate sacrifice is The Basis for the Hope and Confidence – it grants access to God
# The blood of Jesus that was shed > A new and living way opened for us > there is no more guilt > we have Full assurance > we can draw near to God
# This is the essence of Christian’s belief, this symbolises who we are
- Knowing this we must “spur” (stir/provoke) each other on to love and good deeds. v24
# Sometimes you might be hurt by others and it can be painful but it is necessary
# We should keep the fellowship going, but not to gossip v25
2) Stop deliberately Sinning (Hebrew 10:26)
- If we willingly and knowingly keep on sinning, we cancel the effect of Jesus’ sacrifice. By doing so we are disqualifying ourselves the access to God
- This is refers to continuous sins that we do not care and are not trying to get out
3) Persevere Through Suffering, do not throw away your confidence (Hebrew 10: 32 – 36)
- Faith doesn’t mean no suffering, we live in an imperfect world, even Jesus suffered
- Faith dictates how we respond to suffering, it enables us to endure through and persevere.
- God will help us to endure through, remember the basis of Jesus’s Sacrifice v34
A life of faith is about holding on unswervingly to our hope, stop deliberately sinning, persevering through suffering and not throwing away confidence
Operationalizing what we know
- How we face uncertainty?
# ”…I know whom I have believed, and am convinced that he is able to guard what I have entrusted to him until that day.” 2Tim 1:12
# Know that God is there for you and you can endure through anything
- How we Face Mistakes?
# When we committed a mistake, calm down and pray, for God can do miracles
# “…And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” Romans 8:28
- How we face death?
# The maturity of our faith drives our responses to death –even some Christians might response very negatively and can be difficult to others who care for them
# Paul had faith even in jail, he wrote “For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain.”
We must check on our actions in difficult times – they should reflect our Faith
Hebrew 10: 19 – 39
19 Therefore, brothers and sisters, since we have confidence to enter the Most Holy Place by the blood of Jesus, 20 by a new and living way opened for us through the curtain, that is, his body, 21 and since we have a great priest over the house of God, 22 let us draw near to God with a sincere heart and with the full assurance that faith brings, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water. 23 Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful. 24 And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds,25 not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.
26 If we deliberately keep on sinning after we have received the knowledge of the truth, no sacrifice for sins is left, 27 but only a fearful expectation of judgment and of raging fire that will consume the enemies of God. 28 Anyone who rejected the law of Moses died without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses. 29 How much more severely do you think someone deserves to be punished who has trampled the Son of God underfoot, who has treated as an unholy thing the blood of the covenant that sanctified them, and who has insulted the Spirit of grace? 30 For we know him who said, “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,”d and again, “The Lord will judge his people.”e 31 It is a dreadful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.
32 Remember those earlier days after you had received the light, when you endured in a great conflict full of suffering. 33 Sometimes you were publicly exposed to insult and persecution; at other times you stood side by side with those who were so treated. 34 You suffered along with those in prison and joyfully accepted the confiscation of your property, because you knew that you yourselves had better and lasting possessions. 35 So do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded.
36 You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what he has promised. 37 For, “In just a little while, he who is coming will come and will not delay.” 38 And, “But my righteous one will live by faith. (the just shall live by faith – KJV) And I take no pleasure in the one who shrinks back.” 39 But we do not belong to those who shrink back and are destroyed, but to those who have faith and are saved.