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Summary: 5 elements for running and winning in your Christian race

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RUNNING TO WIN

Hebrews 12:1-2

Intro: When I study a message I try to address these six questions. Who was it written to and who is doing the writing, what is the subject that is being discussed, when was it written, where was it written, why was it written and how was it written. I feel like that I if I can address those questions I can get a good grip of the context being written about. Hebrews was written to people who were being persecuted because of their faith in Christ. Many of these Hebrew Christians’ had left Judaism and turned to Christ and the writer is concerned they may give up n the face of opposition and return to the heresy they were delivered from. So in an effort to explain to and encourage them the writer compares the Christian life as to a person who is in a race. In this day and time many have become discouraged and quit running. In the story of “Hare and the Tortoise” the reason the hare lost the race is because he thought he had it one and took a long nap. In his slumber the tortoise passed him and won. My friend it is not about how fast you can run the race it is just about how you finish. I want to preach this morning on the subject, “RUNNING TO WIN.” To win the race you have got to get in. In this race there is not a first prize or second prize or a third prize. The Bible just says there is a prize and everyone who finished the race wins the prize.

I. TO WIN THE RACE YOU HAVE GOT TO HAVE SOME INSPIRATION

A. Behind every great winner there is some inspiration. Someone who stood in that person life

B. I don’t know of a better place to start than Hebrews 11 by looking at all of those who have already completed the race and became our heroes

C. (Hebrews 12:1) Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses…

D. This does not mean that all of those people in Hebrews 11 are spectators to what is going on on earth

E. Rather they witness to us by their lives of faith and endurance and set a standard for us to duplicate

1. I am talking about Abel obtaining a righteous witness by what he sacrificed to God

2. I am talking about Enoch who walked with God and gave us hope of the rapture in Genesis 5

3. I am talking about Noah who found grace in the sight of God but moved with fear to save his house

4. Abraham who obeyed God and patiently endured for the sake of the promise of God (Genesis 22:16-18)

II. TO WIN THE RACE YOU HAVE GOT TO HAVE SOME PREPARATION

A. (Hebrews 12:1) Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us…

B. I am drawn to the portion of that verse that says, Let us lay aside every weight and the sin

C. Here the writer is talking about two different things

1. Weights – ogkos: burden or hindrance

2. Sin – hamartia (ha-mar-tee-ah): offences or sin

D. The Christian life is one that call for discipline and endurance

E. That is why a runner in this race must strip themselves of all the weights that will beset them


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