The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

© Jeanne E Webster

Hebrews 11—a brief

First generation Jewish Christians suffered the soul-splitting surgery of having to give up long-held traditions, only to be persecuted by family and foe alike.   Their most crushing anguish: Christ had not yet returned . . . and there was no apparent sign that He would return.

The Book of Hebrews exhorts them to hold fast to their faith in Christ.  Chapter 11 is a form of trail of tears of God’s people as they had sojourned towards the Promised Land.    Example after example of those who lived by faith in God is accounted as a good report, signifying their righteousness in the eyes of God.  “By faith. . .” they lived and died, ever advancing towards their goal.   Study this chapter.  It is a soul awakener, a study in Christian economics.  The price on the world market had been steep:  torturing, stoning, cutting apart by swords, burning alive in pots of hot oil, lunches for lions, wandering destitute, sick and tormented.  The writer of Hebrews affirms in v. 38, “Of whom the world was not worthy.”

Christians today have the same goal, and at times, comparable anguish while seeking our eternal home.  We face times of weakness, trials, pain and sufferings, persecutions, cruel mocking, bonds and imprisonment.  And, yea, even death.   Our brothers and sisters in many countries face these trials on an everyday basis.  May we be comforted in the promise that faith sustains; emotions fade away.

Heb. 12:1 “Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight and the sin that so easily besets us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us.”

Seek the joy that comes from doing God’s will.  Even though the fruit is unseen, know that it is there!

Shalom

14 comments on “The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

  1. I’m so glad you mentioned Hebrews 11 and reminded us of, not only the big heroes of the faith (Abraham…), but those who were “destitute.” (vss 36-38). When I couldn’t find a job some folk pointed me to Hebrews 11 and urged me to have faith. But faith is not only for provision; faith is also to get us through the dark night of the soul when everything is against us. Always, Yahweh shows himself faithful. As the Psalmist says, “I am young, and now I am old, but I have never seen the righteous begging for bread.”

  2. God is speaking to me today in so many ways…”let us run with patience the race that is set before us”, I did needed to be reminded to hold tightly on to my faith and to live my life on the path God put me on. Thank you.

  3. mtsweat says:

    An encouraging challenge Jeanne. This great cloud of witnesses… indeed God’s gift to us, and we should strive to become the cloud of witnesses. p.s. really expected to see Clint Eastwood here. Blessings good friend.

    • Blessings! Yes, the writer of Hebrews was a great encourager, then and now. As the days ahead get darker, I for one need all the encouraging I can get from the only source I trust. . . God’s Word.

      PS: Re: Clint
      He had a previous engagement, where I don’t know! Gotta love him! 🙂

    • What a cloud of witnesses! They blazed a trail clear through the Old Testament into the end of the New Testament. And to this day, the embers remain as testimony to God’s truth and grace. Amen indeed! 🙂

  4. Justin says:

    Hebrews 12:1 is my favorite verse! Of course there are many other “favorites” I have too. haha. Thanks for sharing. 🙂

    I wrote on Hebrews 12:1 a while back. If you have time check it out: http://iwanttobelieveingod.com/2012/04/25/looking-unto-jesus/

  5. Lyn Leahz says:

    The walk in Christ Jesus is never, ever easy…it is a difficult one. When we are mixed in with the world, and so many sinning around us, doing things our flesh longs to do..our corrupt flesh…yet, at the same time, we are set apart. I wish more people would really meditate on what “carrying our cross” means. I think when they come to the full knowledge of the suffering and anguish bestowed upon Jesus Christ when He ‘carried His cross’ and then hung from it after having enormous nails drilled through his wrists and feet…then they can come to understand that the cross we must carry, oftentimes, does not compare to the burden of His.

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