26th November 2022
Read (Hebrews 11v11-16)
Message (Scott Woodburn)
Do you remember how Eve rejoiced at the birth of her son Cain? She had no clue that Cain would be a faithless murderer but she did know that God had promised a child who would crush the head of Satan. So with the promise of God ringing in her soul she declared "I have gotten a man with the help of the Lord!" Cain wasn't the promised Saviour but his brother Seth would be included in the family tree of the promised Lord. Abraham would be mentioned in that family tree as well and miraculously so too would his son Isaac.
What was so miraculous about the birth of Isaac? His mother Sarah and his father Abraham were well past age when Sarah fell pregnant with her firstborn son (v11). Indeed when Sarah heard God's promise to bless her with a child she laughed. How could a woman of 90 and a man of 100 have a child? But Sarah's laughter would cease. She believed God and considered that He was faithful to all that He promised (v11).
Sarah miraculously conceived, Isaac was born and from this wee family came descendants as many as the stars in the sky and as the grains of sand by the sea (v12). Amazingly you and I are considered descendants of Abraham by virtue of our saving faith in Christ. We may not be physically related to him but we share the faith of Abraham and his wife Sarah. Paul explains it this way "If you are Christ's, then you are Abraham's offspring, heirs according to promise." (Galatians 3v29)
Abraham, Sarah and Issac all died without seeing the glorious fulfilment of God's promises but they "greeted them from afar" (v13). In other words they knew that even though they were strangers and exiles on earth they had a homeland and a country which was heavenly (v16). All of the Lord's promises may not have been fulfilled in their lifetime but regardless they knew that the promises of God were unshakeable and they would surely come to pass.
Faith believes that God can raise the dead. Faith believes that the Lord can bless an elderly couple with a child. Faith believes extraordinary and unseen things but faith in Christ is never misplaced and the faithful will never be put to shame.
Brothers and sisters, God is not ashamed of the faithful. We are at the same time justified yet sinful and on this side of glory we will fail constantly but the Lord remains unashamed of those who have believed His promises. We may know many hard days throughout the duration of our lives but our God has prepared for us a heavenly city (v16). We will dwell there at peace and we will never leave, it will be a place without sin or doubt or fear., a place were righteousness dwells and a place where Christ walks with His people.
I'm looking forward to that place. My faith is in Christ and my prayer is "come quickly Lord Jesus"
Q8 How doth God execute his decrees? God executeth his decrees in the works of creation and providence.