Summary: If we want to see faith deliver for us, we must break faith down to see what is involved and how to act on it. In this message, we will examine the substance, hope and security of faith.
Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. Hebrews 11.1
The word “substance” has also been translated as confidence, confident and assurance. It implies the use of a sub-structure or foundation.
ILL: The Gate of the Fortress of Purandhar, India was built in 1290 by The Rajah of Bedar. The rajah was informed by his craftsmen that the site was quagmire into which any structure would presently collapse.
In his desperation he listened to a dream in which he was advised to build the gate upon a golden underpinning. He excavated two great cavities in the marshy ground. Each of the excavations measured 35 feet square and 12 feet deep. The royal treasury was emptied of 50,000 gold bricks weighing 4,320 grains each.
This precious hoard totaling 37,500 pounds—worth $16,000,000 today—was lowered into the ground to form the foundation upon which the gate was built. Both the gate and its 14-karat foundation are still there. Their presence is attested by two copper plates—upon which the rajah engraved a historic record of the operation and the treasure.
Faith is to believe what we do not see; and the reward of this faith is to see what we believe.—Abraham Lincoln
We must have a solid, foundational faith in something, then we can have a hope in it.
While we do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal. 2 Corinthians 4.18
ILL: Missionary Hudson Taylor sailed to his mission in China. Very close to the shore of cannibal islands the ship lost wind, and it was slowly drifting shoreward unable to go about. The savages were eagerly anticipating a feast.
The captain came to Mr. Taylor and asked him to pray for the help of God. “I will,” said Taylor, “provided you set your sails to catch the breeze.” The captain declined to make himself a laughing stock by unfurling in a dead calm. Taylor said, “I will not undertake to pray for the vessel unless you will prepare the sails.” And it was done.
While engaged in prayer, there was a knock at the door of his stateroom. “Who is there?” The captain’s voice responded, “Are you still praying for wind?” “Yes.” “Well,” said the captain, “you’d better stop praying, for we have more wind than we can manage.”
If we will just act on hope just the slightest bit, God is able and, many times, willing to respond.
For we were saved in this hope, but hope that is seen is not hope; for why does one still hope for what he sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, we eagerly wait for it with perseverance. Romans 8.24-25
And you would be secure, because there is hope. Job 11.18
Security applies assurance. We know that we can have faith in an invisible God with substance. We have a hope in His salvation, and we can be secure and sure of that salvation because of hope.
And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand. John 10.28
This verse tells us that we have security in our place with His family, and that He is not about to let anything steal us away.