Summary: Running the race of life as a Christian.
Introduction: Have you seen that reality T.V. show called “The Amazing Race”? It takes different teams of people and has them running from one exotic location to another trying to be the first to arrive at the final destination. It’s kind of a crazy show as most reality TV shows are, but it’s premise is laden with symbolism that is applicable to the race that we all must run called “Life”.
Life is one amazing race, isn’t it? It begins with a process called birth & ends with the culminating event called death. In between those two momentous events is where we all find ourselves right now! The process of life and how we live it is an extremely serious matter because where we spend eternity depends on how we run this amazing race of life!
In this passage of scripture, the Hebrew writer tells the Christians of the first century to be aware of how they run the race of life. As Christians in the 21st century, I believe and the bible teaches that we still need to be aware of how we run the amazing race of life! Today, I want to share with you three points that each of us should consider as we run the amazing race of life!
I. OTHERS ARE WATCHING HOW WE RUN OUR RACE!
The Hebrew writer begins this chapter by using the word “WHEREFORE”. The wherefore serves linguistically as a coordinating conjunction to tie the aforementioned thoughts in chapter 11 to the present applications presented in chapter 12. He had just talked about all the great hero’s of faith Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, & Moses; and he makes the point that as Christians we have a great heritage a veritable cloud of witnesses looking down upon us – a cheering section in the clouds – urging us on to victory in Jesus as we run life’s amazing race!
The truth of the matter is that we all have a great cloud of witnesses surrounding each of us as we live our lives day by day. It matters to others how we live because the only sermon some people will hear is the one you preach with your life! I disagree with the popular philosophy of the world that says “It’s your life to live as you want to live”. The bible teaches that each of us are bought and paid for with a price & that price was the precious blood of Jesus Christ. We are to live in such a way that our lives reflect the fact that we are new creatures in Christ Jesus.
(cf. II Cor. 5:17, Rms. 12:1-2 )
II. MANY OBSTACLES PREVENT US FROM RUNNING THE RACE WELL!
Have you ever seen Olympic athletes as they prepare to compete in a race? They will all begin to strip away the warm-up suits and the sweat pants in anticipation of the race that they are about to run. They don’t want anything binding or restrictive that would hinder them from running all out!
In much the same way the Hebrew writer tell Christians that we are to lay aside those things that would hinder or restrict us spiritually as we run this race of life! When I was in high school I considered myself an athlete, and we would wear ankle weights all day long. Then when it was time for the game we’d take off those weights and man, it seemed like we could fly! That’s the idea behind the Hebrew writer’s admonition; lay aside those things which will hinder you from running all out as a Christian and making heaven your home!