What Pleases God

Bill Brinkworth

Beginning in Hebrews 10:38 and continuing throughout the chapter, Paul writes about another important spiritual concept that the Hebrews needed to understand. He wrote about faith. This concept was also prevalent throughout Old Testament times, and should have been recognized by the Hebrews.

More about “faith” is continued in Hebrews 11. It is in Heb. 11:1 where one will read the best definition of what faith really is: “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.”  Faith is what one has when he is convinced that without visual proof, what he is desiring will come to fruition. Those with faith know what they require will happen! The expectation is so great that it is actually “substance”.

Much of the chapter gives highlights from the lives of believers the Hebrews would have known, and how faith was the driving force behind what they accomplished. Over nineteen Old Testament saints were cited in “God’s Hall of Faith” for their great faith in their mighty God. Three examples of the faith of Abraham (vss. 8, 9, 17), four from Moses (vss. 24, 27-29) were in the list, as were those of Abel, Enoch, Noah, and many others.

Not only were some of the accomplishments of noted saints specifically mentioned, but also general references to other heroic steps of faith by others. “Prophets” in general were cited for their faith (vs. 32).  Also, unnamed heroes of the faith that would not move from righteousness, but hung onto their faith even unto their death were also listed in verses 33-37. Many of the unnamed may have been known by those Paul wrote to, as many Christians were facing persecution and still would not waiver in their faith, even at the cost of their lives.

Faith is the crucial thread that runs from the earliest believers, throughout the Old and New Testaments, and even today. We can do all kinds of things that we may think please God. Some people are even convinced that their good intentions and works are enough to please Him. Without faith, verse six says, “… it is impossible to please him…” The one thing that all believers must have, if they want to please God, is uncompromising, unwavering, and unrelenting faith in their heavenly Father — whatever He requires of them!
“But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.” Hebrews 11:6

“Faith is firm persuasion and expectation, knowing that God will perform all that He has promised to the believer in Christ; and this persuasion is so strong and complete that it assures the believer of possession, even now, of those things for which he exercises faith … Faith does not look to God with a cold heart and clouded thoughts concerning things to come.” — Oliver B. Greene

This article was featured in The Bible View #615.

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