As we continue to focus on what faith that pleases God looks like, we now come to Sarah, the wife of Abraham. We call Abraham, “the father of our faith”. But Sarah also demonstrates a faith pleasing to God. Often, we think real faith must be perfect without any defects. But in this chapter, we have found among the occupants of the hall of faith, imperfect, flawed people. That should make us all feel more at home in the family of faith. The common denominators should be that we all believe God’s word and trust Him enough to appropriately obey God’s word. That is the ultimate sign of a true believer.
Another important feature seen in true believers is the characteristic of having a view for eternity, having an eternal outlook rather than merely focused on the things of this life. That’s why the Holy Spirit describes these faithful in the following words.
These all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off, were assured of them, embraced them and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth. For those who say such things declare plainly that they seek a homeland. And truly if they had called to mind that country from which they had come out, they would have had opportunity to return. But now they desire a better, that is, a heavenly country. Therefore, God is not ashamed to be called their God, for He has prepared a city for them.” (Hebrews 11:13–16, NKJV)
This text captures some key words that describe every true believer.
Even though they didn’t immediately receive God’s promises, they, with the eyes of faith, “saw them afar off”, and were “assured of them”, and therefore, “embraced them”, and “confessed” that they were waiting for a promise yet to be received in heaven. Therefore, God is not ashamed of them”. Lord help us to possess and demonstrate that sort of faith in our lives!
In like manner, people today believe God’s word about Jesus, and embrace the truth of the Gospel, and are saved.
For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” (John 3:16, NKJV)
that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. For the Scripture says, “Whoever believes on Him will not be put to shame.”” (Romans 10:9–11, NKJV)
In Him you also trusted, after you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation; in whom also, having believed, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise,” (Ephesians 1:13, NKJV)
May we be a people who embrace the good news of the Gospel and share it with others.