Useful Bible Studies > Hebrews Commentary > chapter 11

The faith of Abraham

Hebrews 11:8

Abraham is sometimes called Ďthe father of faithí. Perhaps that phrase refers to verses like Galatians 3:9 and Galatians 3:29. Those verses describe people who have faith as Abrahamís children. In other words, such people benefit from the promises that God gave to Abraham.

But, as we have seen, Abraham was not the first person in the Bible to show faith (active belief and trust in God). However, Abrahamís faith was especially important. Genesis 15:6 describes his faith. Abraham believed God, and so he received a right relationship with God. When Paul wanted to emphasise the importance of faith, he twice referred to that verse. See Romans 4:1-3 and Galatians 3:6-9.

Noah (Hebrews 11:7) and Abraham had very different lives. But they both received faith in the same way, that is, from Godís word.

Godís word warned Noah about the great flood. Godís word invited Abraham to receive land as a gift. The two messages were very different, but both men had to trust God completely. Noah had to prepare for an event that he had not yet seen. Abraham had to go to a country that he did not know. He did not even know where he was going.

But both menís reaction was the same. They believed God, and they obeyed him. In other words, they had faith. Their actions showed complete belief and trust in God.

And that is why God rewarded those men. They did not merely receive a place to live. They received a right relationship with God. And that relationship came from Godís promises to them.

Next part: God chooses when to carry out his promises (Hebrews 11:9)


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© 2014, Keith Simons.