Hebrews 11.17-22 – Future Faith // Advent

Corrie Ten Boom said

Never be afraid to trust an unknown future to a known God. 

So how do we know what He is going to do in the future then?

Where does our future faith come from?

The ultimate guarantee for our future faith, the ultimate proof for us to have the kind of faith seen in Hebrews 11.17-22 is what we will gather in about 12 days to celebrate.

Even though there are so many all throughout His Word to us, the ULTIMATE proof of God’s ability and willingness to provide for you today and all of your tomorrows was sending His Son to take on flesh and live among us.


The word advent itself means “arrival” or “an appearing or coming into place.”. 

We often speak of Christ’s “first advent” and “second advent”; that is, His first and second comings to earth.

His first advent would be the incarnation, literally, when He took on flesh — Christmastime.

As the Old Testament faithful longed for their Messiah to come, so we now long for their Saviour to come again.

He did it, He came, He lived, He died, He rose, He ascended, He said He is coming again, and He will come again. The ultimate touch point of our future faith is actually in the past, Christmas, and Easter, the life, the work, the person of Jesus.

Abraham and family all showed faith in the future, all showed faith in the future faithfulness of God. Let us live our lives now as if God will be there for you and yours tomorrow. Let us use this advent season to push us forward to future faith.

Hebrews 11.12 – One Man

Our faith compels us to trust and move towards the things of God as revealed in His Word, and through the person of Jesus.

Our faith compels us to trust in the faithfulness of God, as Sarah did in Hebrews 11.11. Both Abraham and Sarah moved in faith.

Where do we go with our faith?

Ultimately, to the city we read of in Revelation 21, the city whose designer and builder is God.

How do we get there?

Therefore from one man, and him as good as dead, were born descendants bas many as the stars of heaven and as many as the innumerable grains of sand by the seashore.

Hebrews 11.12

How then? Through faith in One man.

Just as through one man were born descendants as many as the stars of heaven and as many as the innumerable grains of sand by the seashore, by faith in One man your sins are forgiven.

This One man is far greater than the old one man, your access to God is assured, your permanent residence in this city guaranteed, and your faith that you are moving forward in is justified. 

Because of the faith of one man, Abraham, God’s people had a human heritage and lineage, and now, for us, because of the faithfulness of One Man, Jesus, we can be God’s people, each and every one of us. 

We can move towards that heavenly city.

We can move forward in faith.

Faith in One Man.

Hebrews 11.6 – Why Faith?

…without faith it is impossible to please him, for whoever would draw near to God must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him.

Hebrews 11.6

The writer/speaker to the Hebrews didn’t say that it is difficult to please God without faith. 

He didn’t say something like ‘You will need to work really hard…‘ to please God.

He said that it is impossible.

…without faith it is impossible to please him…

Is your aim to please God?

Is the master passion of your life to live the best life you can according to what God says life should be, or is the master passion of your life living your best life now according to what you think life should be?

We also read

…he rewards those who seek him.

It doesn’t say that God rewards those who are sincere in all they do.

It doesn’t say that God rewards those who try to be moral…principled…’good’…simply come to church and agree…

…he rewards those who seek him.

Are you seeking Him in all you do?

But How do we seek Him?

“Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me. 2 In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? 3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also. 4 And you know the way to where I am going.” 5 Thomas said to him, “Lord, we do not know where you are going. How can we know the way?”

6 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. 7 If you had known me, you would have known my Father also. From now on you do know him and have seen him.”

John 14.1-7

How do we please God? In faith.

How do we seek God? In faith.

It is faith that pleases Him.

It is those who seek Him through faith in Jesus He rewards.

Relationship with God is only possible when the barrier of our sin has been removed by trusting in Jesus, putting our faith into action.

Jesus died on that cross to take our punishment, to pay our debt, to give His sinless life as a worthy sacrifice, and for the one who believes, to allow us to live in His presence for eternity.

That is why faith.

Faith – Hebrews 11.1

Yesterday at Saar Fellowship we had an all-age family service talking about faith

Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, 

the conviction of things not seen.

Hebrews 11.1

We talked about what faith is not, and then said that faith is confidence or trust in a person or thing.

Everyone put trust into action when they sat on the chairs provided; their physical senses told them that the chair was worth trusting, and our faith is what allows us to trust things of a Spiritual nature.

So far in Hebrews then, we have been encouraged to put our faith into the Word of God, and the work that Jesus did and does for us.

As Hebrews 11 progresses, we will see a great list of people who put their faith into action. The point for the Hebrews, and for us, is that because these regular people were able to put their faith into action, so can you.

Faith is so important, without it we cannot ever please God (11.6), and it is so important that everything rests on it.

Dr. John Lennox said this,

Faith is not a leap into the dark, but a step into the light.

Where do we step then, by faith?

Into the light, into the light of the world.

Where do we put our faith, our hope, our trust?

In God and in His Word, which all points to One person…

We have faith in the faithfulness of Jesus.

We have faith in how good Jesus is.

We have faith in how much faith Jesus has, how faithful He is, how full of faith He is, don’t we?

Hebrews 10.26-39 – Remove, Remember, Remain

26 For if we go on sinning deliberately after receiving the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, 27 but a fearful expectation of judgment, and a fury of fire that will consume the adversaries. 28 Anyone who has set aside the law of Moses dies without mercy on the evidence of two or three witnesses. 29 How much worse punishment, do you think, will be deserved by the one who has trampled underfoot the Son of God, and has profaned the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified, and has outraged the Spirit of grace? 30 For we know him who said, “Vengeance is mine; I will repay.” And again, “The Lord will judge his people.” 31 It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.

32 But recall the former days when, after you were enlightened, you endured a hard struggle with sufferings, 33 sometimes being publicly exposed to reproach and affliction, and sometimes being partners with those so treated. 34 For you had compassion on those in prison, and you joyfully accepted the plundering of your property, since you knew that you yourselves had a better possession and an abiding one. 35 Therefore do not throw away your confidence, which has a great reward. 36 For you have need of endurance, so that when you have done the will of God you may receive what is promised. 37 For,

“Yet a little while,
    and the coming one will come and will not delay;
38 but my righteous one shall live by faith,
    and if he shrinks back,
my soul has no pleasure in him.”

39 But we are not of those who shrink back and are destroyed, but of those who have faith and preserve their souls.

What kind of people should we be?

Why should keep going to church (vv.19-25)?

What does being part of a body help us become?

We should be the kind of people for whom there will never come a time when we might give in to the temptation to declare that the whole thing was worthless (vv.26-31).

We should be the kind of people who refuse to remove ourselves from right relationship with God through a steadfast faith in the faithfulness of Jesus.

We should be the kind of people who remember what happened to us when we first gave our lives to Him (vv.32-38).

We should be the kind of people who remember the former days when after we were enlightened how we put up with and triumphed over everything that the world, the flesh, and the devil could throw at us.

We should be the kind of people who live by faith and do not shrink back (v.39).

Faith is what matters–God’s faithfulness to us, and our answering that with faith in Him.

We should be the kind of people who have faith in Jesus and preserve our souls, remain in Him.

39 But we are not of those who shrink back and are destroyed, but of those who have faith and preserve their souls.

Is that you?

Take Me To Church

And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.

Hebrews 10.24-25

Some may say, well, I go gather with Christians for breakfast once a month, or, I go to a home-group. Is that what we are talking about?

“The words, not neglecting to meet together, presumably refer to worship meetings…the Greek word suggests some official assembly.” (Guthrie)

We are talking, then, of the formal, organised, gathering and assembling of the church.

So, a home growth group is good, but not church, and not what we are talking about. It’s a supplement to your diet, not your diet.

Watching sermons from your favourite preacher on YouTube, is good, if they are biblically sound, but it’s not church. 

Reading devotionals is good, listening to podcasts is goo, but it is not church. 

None of those things are going to give you a hug when you are sad. 

None of those things are going to help you with your day-to-day life when you need practical help. 

None of those things are going to drive to your house when they hear you are having a tough time or have hurt yourself.

None of those things will rearrange their schedules or drop everything to do something for you.

None of those things I’m going to call you up and offer you a word of encouragement spontaneously because the Holy Spirit prompting them to do so.

Church does.

Church is a special thing, church is a unique thing, church is a holy and sacred thing that we must not neglect to be part of. 

We should want to be at everything with everyone all the time.

Practically, you will never be with everyone and at everything all the time…but is that your intention when you have a choice?

Given a choice, do you choose church, the living body of Christ?

Why do I need to go to church?

To fill our hearts with full assurance of faith.

To strengthen our hands to hold fast our confession.

To consider, to think deeply, how to stir one another up to love and good works.


N.T. Wright wrote that every Christian who comes through the door in the place of worship is a real encouragement to everyone else who is there. 

And for that reason we need to have the attitude of ‘take me to church’.

Hebrews 10.1-18 – Never, Never, Forever

Forgiveness costs somebody something, somebody absorbs the offence to offer forgiveness.

Jesus’ sacrifice was God’s final answer to the universal problem of human sin, and is the only way to be forever forgiven. He absorbed the offence for you.

The New Covenant that Jesus died to initiate has to do with an inner transformation. God changes the heart of man, and writes His law into our hearts. This is a deeper remedy than the blood of bulls and goats, this cleanses our conscience, this is a new birth of a new creation, this is real and true and lasting forgiveness.

Jesus offers you complete forgiveness,

you are forever forgiven. 

The forgiveness is so complete that God says He will never call to mind our sin, and when God says something, it happens.

I will remember their sins and their lawless deeds no more.

Hebrews 10.17

For us, we’ve go to do with sin exactly what God has done: forget about it.

We need to recognise it, admit we have sinned, realise it, realise that alone we can never cancel out that record, repent of it, turn away from it, and receive it, accept the forgiveness on offer. Acknowledge it, as God did in sending Christ, but have it dealt with and leave it unthought of.

Sin removes us from God and His presence,

forgiveness rejoins us. 

God sees you as positionally perfect, nothing to add to make you good enough in His eyes, He looks at you and sees the righteousness of Christ, God looks at us and He sees forgiven sinners, He sees you as perfect because there is nothing left to add in terms of forgiveness and reconciliation. 

So, where do we stand? We stand forgiven in His eyes with a repentant faith in Jesus.


This devotional was part of a message given at Saar Fellowship, hear it in full at saarfellowship.com