Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.
For by it the elders obtained a good testimony – Hebrews 11: 1-2
The book of Hebrews 11 is full of great feats accomplished by men usually termed ‘The Heroes of Faith’. They were not so called because of any great abilities they possessed neither had they any attractive human qualities that gave them such a famous place in the kingdom. These men were not prominent by any human standard, but Heaven made them so. They achieved feats humanly impossible only by the hand of God. God met all these men as weaklings who themselves acknowledged the fact. Some of them were already written off by their contemporaries, but God proved their generation wrong by making greatness out of their lives.
What Faith Is
Hebrews 11 begins by telling us that faith is ‘the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen’. Faith is simply engaging the Word of God to do the humanly impossible; it is taking God at His Word. Faith is not a mere passive ‘belief’ or ‘wishful thinking’ but an active adventure into the unseen with God in the lead. Faith is daring! It is acting based on God’s Word. Faith surpasses fact; it is based on the faithfulness of God. The world believes in the principle of ‘seeing is believing’ but the opposite is the case in the Kingdom of God. In the Kingdom, we don’t see to believe, we rather believe to see it come to pass. Every man God used in the Scripture was used on the premise of faith. The author of Hebrews puts it thus: “But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him”– Hebrews 11:6. Without faith it is ‘impossible’ to please God. This implies that nothing else can substitute faith in the Kingdom. Not mere knowledge, not eloquence, not charisma. Faith is the language of the Kingdom. It is the key medium of exchange in the Kingdom by which we access Heaven’s resources to affect our world. The elders (Heroes of Faith) could only obtain good reports by faith. If we must please God and become instruments for the humanly impossible, then Faith is inevitable.
Men Who Dared The Impossible For The Kingdom By Faith
On the matter of faith, God has not left us in the dark, but has provided some examples of men who through faith conquered their world for God. For Moses, he had an impediment of speech: “…Oh my Lord, I am not eloquent, neither before nor since You have spoken to Your servant; but I am slow of speech and slow of tongue.” The LORD’s response to Moses was “…Who has made man’s mouth? Or who makes the mute, the deaf, the seeing or the blind? Have not I, the LORD?” – Exodus 4:10-11. This Scripture reveals Moses’ human incapability at the time God called him.
It is amazing to know that the same man who complained of not being eloquent was later revealed to us by the Holy Ghost through Steven in Acts 7:22 as being “…learned in all the wisdom of the Egyptians, and was mighty in words and deeds.” How can a man who was weak in speech when God called him suddenly become mighty in words and deeds? That must be by the Mighty Hand of God. That same timid and ineloquent man at the back side of the wilderness later became a god to Pharaoh such that the Bible records that Moses was great in the sight of Pharaoh and his servants. Pharaoh’s palace was at a standstill whenever Moses showed up. Moses’ story truly confirms the saying that ‘God does not choose the humanly qualified but qualifies the chosen’. At the heart of God’s mighty power was Moses’ faith. Heaven has so much to offer but faith is the medium by which we receive these provisions for our lives. Although God declared in Genesis 8:22 that “While the earth remains, seedtime and harvest, cold and heat, winter and summer, and day and night shall not cease”, yet Joshua altered the course of time and nature by taking a day out of time in order to defeat the enemies of Israel by faith. Gideon demonstrated faith when his army was screened to 300 men against an innumerable company of the Midianite army and they had the victory. The gigantic, terrifying, Philistine warrior, Goliath was brought down and killed by a stone from the sling of a little Shepherd boy called David. This was an act of faith in God by the young David. How about Esther? She, through her unflinching faith in God overturned the stiff decree of the king and placed her life on the line to deliver her people, and God was with her. The list goes and on…
And what more shall I say? For the time would fail me to tell of Gideon and Barak and Samson and Jephthah, also of David and Samuel and the Prophets: who through faith subdued kingdoms, worked righteousness, obtained promises, stopped the mouth of lions, quenched the violence of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, out of weakness were made strong, became valiant in battle, turned to flight the armies of the aliens. Women received their dead raised to life again. Others were tortured, not accepting deliverance, that they might obtain a better resurrection. Still others had trial of mockings and scourging, yes, and of chains and imprisonment – Hebrews 11:32-36.
Dear friend, what is your excuse today? Are you like Moses in speech? God is able to turn that around and make you mighty in words. Are you like Gideon by your family background? God needs no consultation from your family background to give you a worthy future and make you great. Are you like Jeremiah by your age? That’s not an issue with God; He is the Maker of the great! Are you like Jephthah by your birth (born illegitimately)? He is the One who gives men their true identity. Each of these men (Heroes of Faith) had issues that would have disqualified them by human standards, but God saw beyond their weaknesses and deficiencies and was ready to give them fresh starts. These men all had something in common which turned their weaknesses into strength – FAITH.
Hey, can you now stop looking at your inabilities and failures and start looking unto Jesus (Hebrews 12:2)? When the next batch of the Heroes of Faith will be inducted into God’s Hall of Faith, will you be numbered among them? What’s that Kingdom assignment you’ve been given, but fear seems to have overwhelmed you? Begin to feed your faith with God’s Word and see your fear starve to death (Romans 10:17). Let faith rise in you for that assignment that looks impossible. Jesus said, “… Have faith in God” – Mark 11:22. Faith in your ability will only lead to a fall. Faith in men will bring cycles of disappointment but faith in God is what brings a man to fame. God is the Master Specialist in impossibilities. Peradventure before you came to Jesus you were walking by your physical sight, but now, “We walk by faith, not by sight” – 2 Corinthians 5:7. Maybe, before now you were living by your human strength and abilities, but “Now the just shall live by faith…” – Hebrews 10:38. Until you see the invisible with the eyes of faith you cannot do the impossible. In order to dare the impossible, we must see the invisible. In fact, there is no ‘impossibility’ in the dictionary of faith because with God, ALL THINGS are possible. In other words NOTHING shall be impossible! Trust Him today and see mountains leveled before you. Shalom!