Faith has no evidence and cross-reference radio specifically how you can get a free copy of this teaching. But this is a foundational section of Hebrews that is going to set the pace for what is to come in the remaining verses of this 11th chapter.
We will only take verses 1 through 3. Faith has evidence enough and the world would like to tell themselves that faith has no evidence. They feel that gets them off the hook and are no longer accountable to a personal God. But we know better. We who believe know that we do not simply believe because we want to. We know that we believe also because there is proof, there is evidence, and that is what is being said right here straight out from our scripture. This is, of course, one of the great chapters of the Bible. And being in Hebrews, it is much like being in the Old Testament. But we're not in the Old Testament. We're in the New Testament, and the New Testament is putting everything in the Old Testament in its proper place before the Son of God, Jesus Christ.
Now this chapter has many nicknames, if you will. For example, the Hall of Faith, the Heroes of the Faith. But I like to think of it as the Hall of Grace. The kindness and the goodness of God is all over the experiences of the characters that will be mentioned in the latter verses. Now for many religious people, for many who claim to believe in God, action faith plays a small role in their lives. They may go to church, they may engage in ritual, they may talk a lot about faith, but when it comes to acting on their faith, they often fall far short. And the characters that, again, are going to be listed in this section, and it certainly is not an exhaustive list, they were those who believed and acted upon their beliefs in spite of opposition, in spite of trouble from within and from without, in spite of doubt. They pressed forward, and they are being held up before us by the Holy Spirit as heroes of our faith and grace. But before we get to them, we have to see what's behind it, what is involved in becoming one who acts upon their faith consistently throughout their life. And so we look now at the first verse, Hebrews chapter 11, verse 1. Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.
Now again, as I mentioned, there's going to be a lot of work here, your hamsters are going to have to pedal a lot and fast to keep up, but we cannot sidestep these things. Again, man should not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God. What good is a Bible if it's not opened up in God's own house and considered?
What good is the Bible if the fruit of doing that never finds its way into a lost world with damned souls? It is supposed to mean something and do something. Well, he begins this first verse with that word, now. Duh, in the Greek.
Kind of works, does it not? Duh, faith is the substance of things hoped for. The now links what he is going to say with what he said in the 10th chapter.
Remember, this was a letter written. There were no chapter divisions, no verses, he just continued the flow. And in chapter 10, on the 30th verse, just look up a little bit, two verses before we get to our text. He says, the just shall live by faith. He's quoting that great Old Testament prophet, Habakkuk. Now, again, if you're not a Bible student, you go, Habakkuk? Habakkuk.
It's a name that is worth knowing, especially the life. But who are the just? When Habakkuk said the just shall live by faith, well, those are believers.
Those who believe in God and want to line up with him, not with the world. You're going to come into a lot of pressure to not do that. You younger Christians, as you go out into the workplace, as you go out into the universities, the colleges, wherever you find yourself, there's going to be this pressure put on you to be a chameleon, to blend in with your background, but to not stand alone for Christ. You better learn how to defy it early on. Don't give an inch.
It's not worth it. The world has nothing spiritually to offer you but death and death eternal. Get it into your noggin that God is true, his word is dependable, that the devil can mess with the mind without touching the brain.
This is why there are so many brainiacs that are going to hell. Well, let me get back on course. Live by faith. Live by it. That's action.
Do something with it. Instead of just, I went to church today, now what? Faith is that ever-developing being part of us. It involves repentance that is turning from sin. Without that, there is going to be no faith. Then it involves saving faith that is turning to the Savior, Jesus Christ and no other, on purpose, deliberately, admitting you're a sinner, admitting he is who he says he is, and admitting that what he says about man, including you, is true. And then, from repentance to saving faith, there should be serving faith, faith put into action, doing something with your repentance and your confession of faith.
Collectively, these are illustrated in this chapter. But here in this section, he says, substance, faith is the substance. It's not a theory. It's real.
You can touch it. He says there's evidence. Evidence, the visible, unseen. You can't get there without faith. You cannot see what God has that is not visible but can be seen without faith. And then he says there's a testimony.
That's a historical fact. They did it. You did it.
You're doing it. Others will do it. Substance, evidence, and testimony, these things belong to faith. Without them, it's not action. It's a philosophy. And that's not much use in the world of sin. The unsurrendered, if you're sitting here this morning, you're listening online, or maybe you'll listen later through the radio or a CD recording or something, a podcast, maybe you're not a believer. You're not surrendered to Jesus Christ. You cannot understand.
You can get some of it but not enough of it. Because faith is the key. Faith unlocks the revelation of God. And without that key, there's no unlocking the unseen. Just because it's not visible doesn't mean it's not there.
We'll get to some of that as we move on. But Paul wrote this in Corinthians. He said, the natural man, that's the person that is just born.
That's all. Born once, natural, untouched by God, natural, born in sin. Every single person born is born in sin.
There's only been one exception. By faith the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God. For they are foolishness to him, nor can he know them because they are spiritually discerned. So you go on maybe some YouTube site and you see an atheist ragging on the faith. And then you look at the not being, not attacking them, but saying like it is. You look at the dim-witted comments.
Spiritually dim-witted. And you say they cannot discern. They cannot see it. It's foolishness to them.
They don't have the key. And so, settling for, incidentally, speculation, not revelation. They settle for it.
Well, I think God is. And they just make it up. Or they buy into something that's been handed down from someone else who's made it up, without the spiritual feature, without any punch in it, without any truth that is spiritual and right and good. We often hear them say, well, all religions are the same. No, they are not. There's one that is different from all of them.
There's nothing like them. This is one reason why you can talk Buddha or Mohammed or anybody else in the workplace, but you mentioned Jesus Christ. You've got to fight. Faith is, that's what he says. Faith is. It's an attitude of the soul. Hope is an experience that flows from that attitude.
Hope is not a demand. It is an expectation that God is going to do right. Faith holds one to the one who is to be believed, and that is the Christ.
No matter what. That's what faith is. You will hold to Christ no matter what. Otherwise, there would be no martyrs. Martyrs would not be held up high.
But you can be martyred and not be a disciple. What does it matter if you give your body to be burned and you have not love? For example, what kind of love? The love that comes from a relationship with Christ.
Being twice born. One naturally, one spiritually. So faith trusts in the person of Jesus Christ and his power. Nahum, the prophet. You say, huh? Again, if you don't know the scripture, there's another prophet you don't know.
Habakkuk and Nahum. God spoke through these people. You should know them.
Then it won't do you any harm. They'll do you good. He wrote, Yahweh is good. A stronghold in the day of trouble. He knows those who trust in him.
He knows them. It's the value of prayer and trust. Even if you don't get what you're praying for and trusting in, God knows you're trusting in him. That's what counts more than anything that you could ever gain as far as answered in prayer. That you're known by God and that you're approved by God. It's illustrated in the book of Esther that God will lift up his scepter to you and say, come in. Hebrews chapter 11, the one we're in, verse 27, has the key to this faith thing. Hebrews 11, 27, by faith he, that is Moses, forsook Egypt, not fearing the wrath of the king, for he endured as seeing him who is invisible.
There it is. Faith sees the invisible as seeing him who is invisible. They emphasize that. It takes hold of the unseen realities even towards the future, even towards eternity, that other senses don't pick up. You have other senses that are constantly scanning and they never pick up what faith picks up. You have touch, you have smell, you have hearing, you have sight. As sensitive as the skin is, the eye, how sensitive it is at the touch, at a piece of dust, they can never do what faith does. I wouldn't say it's the sixth sense like the world of psychology likes to say it is.
I will say it's the superior sense. It is that which holds every other sense, every other part of us in place to do something meaningful. And so it clings, faith does, to the unseen realities of God as fact. It acts upon them and is upheld by God. You get support from God.
You have to still do your part, that's why it's not easy. And it holds up faith in those who stand in the face of that which contradicts God. Faith is additional sight that the world again has not. And whatever faith they may have, we say it's counterfeit. They don't like us for saying that. They want us to lock step with them. They want us on the reservation and to stay there.
And don't you dare come off that reservation. You go to where we tell you to go and don't believe outside the box. And we defy it and therefore the persecution comes. Do you know that faith is what defeats death?
I don't mean it stops death. Faith defeats death because it overcomes lies about God. Lies about God caused death in the Garden of Eden.
Satan the liar brought all mankind down to it. And truth about God restores our eternal life to man. Jesus said, you shall know the truth and the truth shall set you free. But without faith you cannot do it. Without trusting God, without believing it based on evidence. Unseen facts about God can only be touched by faith. Trusting Him according to the scripture.
That's how it is set up. Isaiah chapter 40 verse 8, the grass withers, the flowers fade. But the Word of God, it stands. What God has said, no human being, no climate change, who is going to upset that?
Poor polar bears. Anyway, let's stay focused. We're not, that's me. Matthew 4 verse 4, as I mentioned, man should not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God. How profound is that? It's such a simple statement coming from the very throne in heaven of God. You live by my word, all of it. Tozier, again, is A.W.
Tozier. It takes the whole Bible to make a whole Christian. I love that statement. And you know how many Christians don't want to get, receive instruction from the pulpit. They'd rather get it from the internet or glean it somewhere. But they don't want to sit in a church and receive the word.
They want to be entertained. And it's unfortunate. Churches that entertain have full parking lots. Churches that preach the word, they don't, as a rule. John's Gospel 7 verse 38, Jesus speaking, He who believes in me, as the scripture has said, out of his heart will flow living waters, living waters singular. Hebrews 11 verse 6, without faith it is impossible to please God, for he who comes to God must believe that he is and, and that he is a rewarder of those who trust him, who, the verse says, diligently seek him through hard work. So again, you come to a church, you say, I can't keep up with this. It's hard. There's no diligence there. And Paul says, study to show yourself approved, a worker who does not need to be ashamed.
Study means hard work. Is God not worth that much? Here's some things about faith. You cannot dismiss it. Faith is such a big topic.
You cannot exhaust it, but you cannot dismiss it either. Faith is not centered on what one can get out of this life, but of where you go after it. How many Christians think faith is something to get something in this life, to have fun with?
A better house, a better car, a better lifestyle. That's not faith. It doesn't mean those things are wrong in and of themselves, but that's not what faith is centered in. Faith is not centered in objects. It's centered in a person.
What does he want with my life? It lays hold of what Jesus has said, what he has done, and what he has foretold. That's big prophecy coming to pass in our lifetime.
Just the last 50 years alone are astounding. In detail, setting up the stage for the big show. You go to a theater, and if you happen to get there early enough, you're allowed in while the stagehands are putting the props in place. You can see what's going on, where this is going. If they set up a battlefield, well, it's going to be a battlefield scene.
If they set up a kitchen, there's going to be food involved or something. Christ has set the stage through the prophecies in Scripture. Faith leaps into the light because of it, based on evidence enough, according to the Scripture. Trusting God. That is our shield of life. And so Paul says, take up the shield of faith.
You're going to need that. If you're going to block what's going to come at you, and there is going to be a lot, especially the children of the world. The world is attacked with things. Part of being under the curse. We're attacked with the same things and our faith.
Doubts to challenge us, to push us away, to make us useless. How many Christians right now? I believe in Jesus Christ, my Lord and Savior.
I believe I'm a sinner and only by Him I'm saved. Will not come into the house of God because they're doing their thing. I think that's noble. And I understand, I don't want to sound malicious, but it's not right.
You have to be in, on the field of battle. We'll come to some more of that in a minute. But a difference between a saved person and an unsaved person is not that one has faith and the other does not have faith. The difference is what they have faith in or who they have faith in. Everybody exercises faith, believe it or not. You come into a building, you trust that the structure is not going to randomly collapse. But of course there's much more to faith than just trusting in proven laws of physics. The unbeliever, they trust something other than the scripture. We trust the scripture and that's where the contest is.
Faith being no greater than the object because, and the becausees are important, faith is not believing without evidence. Superstition is, that's what superstition is. Throw some salt over your shoulder to ward off the demons. Put a rabbit's foot in your pocket and you'll have a happy day. Whistle while you go through the cemetery and none of them will grab you.
Or whatever. It is faith, not superstition. We don't have to let the world dictate to us what proof is. Listen, if I stand here and say to a worldling, you know the pilgrims settled America in 1940 and they did it in Wyoming.
They would laugh. We have records. We have writings.
Oh, you trust those things? Then why do you mock the scripture? Why do you mock it when we trust the scripture?
Well, this is the battle that we are engaged in. Faith rejects what rejects scripture. That's part of faith too. So, here we go, the verses. Oh, I'll take this one from 2 Thessalonians. Now Paul is writing to the church, these new believers. They came to him when he came to them, beaten, he and Silas. They were scourged with canes in Philippi. They made their way to Thessalonica. They were chased around for their faith. And he gets there and he makes converts.
Hey, anybody want to be a Christian? Look at the beating we just took. And many of them said, yeah, anything is better than these fake idols. Well, not anything.
Truth is better. And so Paul boasts about them. Well, when he left Thessalonica because they chased him out of Thessalonica, they wrote to, they wanted to know what is going to happen at the end of the world. And so he writes to them. And he says, there is coming a political leader who the world is going to love. He's going to have charisma. But he's going to be a liar. He's going to act like he loves the Jews.
He's going to act like he's everybody's friend and he's not. And he gives us some information. He says, the coming of the lawless one is according to the working of Satan. With all power, signs and lying wonders. And with all unrighteous deception among those who perish because they did not receive the love of the truth that they might be saved. For this reason, God will send them strong delusion that they should believe the lie.
God says, fine. I've done everything I can to make you believe. You reject that. All right, take a lie. That's what you want.
Here you go. And so faith rejects what rejects scripture. They are rejecting scripture. Matthew 13, 12. False Christs and false prophets will rise and show signs and wonders to deceive if possible the elect.
Matthew 7, 20. Therefore, by their fruits you will know them. The lying wonders. You see them do things. You say, yeah, but these people are immoral. They are harmful.
They are frauds because of that. That's why the Lord says, by their fruits you'll know them. 1 Timothy 4, 1. Now the Spirit expressly says that in latter times some will depart from the faith giving heed to deceiving spirits. Doctrines of demons. Demons teach human beings and human beings don't even acknowledge their teachers.
Well, that's no surprise. Many of them don't acknowledge the Creator. They commit fraud. They sign someone else's name on the creation of the world. And that's what we're talking about here.
The Creator and all that He is doing. But He says in the end times they're going to leave the faith. That's the apostate church that will be very much alive and well during the days of Antichrist. 2 Timothy 4, 3. For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers.
They're already doing this. I didn't like what He said about cheesecake. It's never a doctrine. It's never, I don't like what He said about scripture.
It's always something else. You've been listening to Cross Reference Radio, the daily radio ministry of Pastor Rick Gaston of Calvary Chapel in Mechanicsville, Virginia. As we mentioned at the beginning of today's broadcast, today's teaching is available free of charge at our website. Simply log on to crossreferenceradio.com. That's crossreferenceradio.com. We'd also like to encourage you to subscribe to the Cross Reference Radio podcast. Subscribing ensures that you stay current with all the latest teachings from Pastor Rick. You can subscribe at crossreferenceradio.com or simply search for Cross Reference Radio in your favorite podcast app. Tune in next time as Pastor Rick continues teaching through the book of Hebrews right here on Cross Reference Radio.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-05-19 15:02:48 / 2023-05-19 15:12:10 / 9