Summary: This is the 1st sermon in the series "Jesus Is Better- The Practice Of Faith".

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Series: Jesus Is Better- The Practice Of Faith [#1]


Hebrews 11:35-12:11


It is easy to get depressed, worn out, or just quit. It is difficult to lead a Christian life all the time. I have also noticed how easy it is to forget how blessed you really are.

Hebrews 11:35-40 (NIV)

“Women received back their dead, raised to life again. Others were tortured and refused to be released, so that they might gain a better resurrection. Some faced jeers and flogging, while still others were chained and put in prison. They were stoned; they were sawed in two; they were put to death by the sword. They went about in sheepskins and goatskins, destitute, persecuted and mistreated-- the world was not worthy of them. They wandered in deserts and mountains, and in caves and holes in the ground. These were all commended for their faith, yet none of them received what had been promised. God had planned something better for us so that only together with us would they be made perfect.’”

These people suffered for the sake of Christ. They lost everything and everybody; but it didn’t stop them. They knew that the one thing that mattered the most to them could not be taken from them- God.

We live in a day and age that Christians need to keep moving forward. We can’t give up just because things are tough. I remember when I played tennis in High School and we would have to run. I hated, (still hate) to run. My philosophy was you only need to run if you are being chased; but my coach disagreed. I needed to run to stay in shape so that when I played tennis matches I could endure through the entire match.

Hebrews 12:1a (NIV)

“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles.”

Christians, we need to run the race that God has set out for us to run. We need to run this race to win. We need to run.

In order to run your race to win, you must…

1. Throw off sin.

We try to make this complicated; but the bottom line is this- Sin is holding you back. You cannot move forward when you are held down by sin. The question is, “Are you willing to throw off everything that hinders”? The biggest problem most of us have concerning sin is that we don’t want to give it up. It’s a choice that you must make.

Hebrews 12:1b (NIV)

“Let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.”

In order to run your race to win, you must…

2. Run with perseverance.

The Christian life is not a sprint. That is the problem for most of us. We try to be spiritual for a while; but we get tired and we stop running. This race lasts your entire lifetime. We need to pace ourselves. Stop trying so hard to be spiritual and start following God’s race that has been marked out for you.

Hebrews 12:2-3 (NIV)

“Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.”

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