The book of Hebrews is written to Jewish Christians who are struggling with keeping their faith in the face of persecution. The writer encourages them to stay strong. Hebrews 11 is a review of some of God’s people who lived by faith. This week we will focus on some of these “Heroes of Faith”
MONDAY: Hebrews 10:35-39
1. Read Hebrews 10:35-39. What does God promise those who do not “throw away their confidence”? Make a list of some things that may tempt someone to “lose your confidence” in God. Have you ever been tempted to lose your confidence in God? Who or what helped you to persevere? Are you struggling with your confidence with God now? If so, who can you talk too help you stay strong?
2. How does God say his “righteous one” will live? While we wait to meet God we have to options: Live by faith or shrink back. What does God says will happen to those who shrink back? To those who believe?
3. What do I need to do help me not to “shrink back” in my faith? Are their some schedule changes I need to make? Relationships I need to change? Habits I need to develop or give up? Identify some changes you can make in your life that will strengthen your faith. Share them with someone and ask them to help you make those changes.
TUESDAY: Hebrews 11:1, 6 FAITH DESCRIBED
1. How would you describe “faith” if asked to do so using one word?
What verbs does the Hebrew writer use in verses 1 and 6 to describe faith?
2. What do you “hope for” in Christ? We do not see heaven. Are you confident that you are going?
3. The “ancients” were commended be cause they believed God’s promises and His handling of the future even though they had no tangible evidence proof of that future other than God’s truthfulness. What fears about the future do you have? How can your faith in God help you alleviate those fears?
4. Taking the verbs you found in verses 1 and 6 write your own definition of faith in God. Share it with someone.
WEDNESDAY: UNDERSTANDING BY FAITH (Hebrews 11:3)
1. God continues to commend the ancients who lived by faith by giving us some specific examples. 18 times the writer uses the phrase “by faith”. We will look at some of them to see how we are to live by faith.
2. Read Hebrews 11:3. As believers what do we understand by faith?
No one was around when the universe began, therefore we believe it was spoken into existence by God or was an accidental big bang we have to accept our belief by faith. Talk with your family about what they are taught in school about the beginning of the world. Compare what they are taught with the following verses: Psalm 33:6-9, Genesis 1:1, Psalm 139:13-16
3. In what do evolutionists want us to put our faith? Which do you think takes more faith?
THURSDAY: BY FAITH ABEL OFFERED
1. Read the story of Cain and Abel in Genesis 4:1-16. Besides the Hebrews 11 and Genesis 4 Cain is mentioned two other times in the Bible: I John 3:12, Jude 11. What words are used to describe Cain? Read Matthew 23:5. How is Abel described?
2. Read Genesis 4:3-6. What was the difference between Abel’s sacrifice and Cain’s? What does the words “fat portions” and “first fruits” show about Abel’s sacrifice?
3. God did not dislike Cain’s sacrifice because it was not an animal but God disliked the attitude in which Cain offered his sacrifice. He took “some” of the fruits. It was not an offering given out of faith.
4. How does Abel still speak to us today? What is he telling us?
FRIDAY: BY FAITH ENOCH…
1. Read Hebrews 11:5 and Genesis 5:22-24. What unusual blessing did Enoch receive?
2. How is Enoch’s relationship with God described in Genesis 5:24? Would you describe your relationship with God as “walking with God”, “running ahead of God”, “running from God”, or “lagging behind God”?
3. What does the phrase “walking with God” imply about Enoch’s relationship with God?
4. By faith Enoch did not experience death. What do we as Christians, by faith, know about physical death (See John 11:25-26, I Corinthians 15:54-57)?
5. How has your view of death changed since becoming a Christian? What question does Jesus ask Martha in John 11:26? How do you answer that question?
SATURDAY: THE IMPORTANCE OF FAITH
1. Read Hebrews 11:6. Playing off of Enoch’s commendation of one who pleased God what do we learn about the importance of faith in our lives?
2. What two facets of faith in God are needed if I am to come to God?
3. Has their ever been a crisis or situation in your life where you wondered of God existed? (Read Job 23:8-10 - How did Job deal with wondering about God’s presence in the midst of his hard times. What did he conclude? How have you come “forth as gold” when you kept faith in tough times?)
4. Whom does God reward? How does one earnestly seek God? How would you contrast an earnest seeker with an occasional seeker? Which type of seeker are you? How can knowing that God rewards you keep you going?