Sermons

Summary: Living by faith is not about the here and now, but the hereafter!

Hebrews 11:13 All these people were still living by faith when they died. They did not receive the things promised; they only saw them and welcomed them from a distance, admitting that they were foreigners and strangers on earth. 1 4People who say such things show that they are looking for a country of their own. 15 If they had been thinking of the country they had left, they would have had opportunity to return. 16 Instead, they were longing for a better country-a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared a city for them -NIV

Title: Living By Faith in A Heavenly Country

Intro: Our country finds itself in the midst of problems and turmoil! (Pandemic, social injustice, economic woes, etc.) What the heroes of the faith teach us is that we are to not fixate on an earthly, but a heavenly country. They teach us the principals of “living by faith” which are:

I. Living by Faith, understands first of all that the promises of God, and the life of faith is built upon, not so much the here and now, but rather the here-after!

Hebrews 11:13a All these people (that we have considered thus far in this study- Abel, and Enoch, and Noah, and Abraham and Sarah) were still living by faith when they died.

A) Point?

1. Their faith didn’t end at the grave, it was intended to take them beyond the grave!

John 3:16 For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.

a) This is an elementary idea regarding what living by faith is about!

Hebrews 11:1a Now faith is the substance of things hoped for,

Romans 8:24b Who hopes for what they already have? 25 But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently

Q: What were Abel, and Enoch, and Noah, and Abraham and Sarah waiting patiently for?

Hebrews 11:13b They did not receive the things promised;

Q: What were the things ultimately promised?

Hebrews 11:16b a better country-a heavenly one

2. Point of this?

a) I think of a song…

This world is not my home

I'm just a-passing through

My treasures are laid up

Somewhere beyond the blue.

The angels beckon me

From heaven's open door

And I can't feel at home

In this world anymore.

Oh Lord, you know

I have no friend like you

If heaven's not my home

Then Lord what will I do.

The angels beckon me

From heaven's open door

And I can't feel at home

In this world anymore.

3. Their perspective?

Hebrews 11:13c admitting that they were foreigners and strangers on earth.

Harry Blamires, in his classic book, The Christian Mind. He writes, “A prime mark of the Christian mind is that it cultivates the eternal perspective. That is to say, it looks beyond this life to another one” (p. 67).

a) We have largely lost this in contemporary evangelicalism. For too many believers our focus has become that of this world: What can Jesus do for me in the here and now? Heaven is nice and hell must be terrible, but those aren’t matters of concern for the present. We have lost the eternal perspective!

John MacArthur- I remember watching in horror and disgust as angry mobs swept through Los Angeles, killing people and setting thousands of buildings on fire. Under the cover of chaos, countless people ransacked and looted every store in sight. I saw entire families—moms, dads, and little children—loading their cars and trucks with anything they could steal. That was the most graphic demonstration of lawlessness I’ve ever seen. It was as if they were saying, “I’m not satisfied with the way life’s treating me, so I’m entitled to grab everything I can—no matter who gets hurt in the process.” Perhaps we don’t realize how selfish and restless the human heart can be until the restraints of law and order are lifted and people can do whatever they want without apparent consequences. Then suddenly the results of our godless “me first” society are seen for what they are. Instant gratification at any cost has become the motto of the day. That’s in stark contrast to people of faith like Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, who trusted in God even when their circumstances were less than they might have expected. God promised them a magnificent land, but they never possessed it. They were, in fact, strangers and refugees in their own land. But that didn’t bother them because they looked forward to a better place—a heavenly city.

4. That is why Paul wrote…

Colossians 3:1 Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. 2 Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. 3 For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. 4 When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory. 5 Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature:

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