Faith Continues Steadfast by Looking to God

mosespartingtheredsea200pxBy faith, Moses renounced the power and privileges of a son of  Pharaoh’s daughter. He chose to suffer maltreatment with God’s people. He chose to reject the fleeting pleasures of sin. He counted the reproach of Christ as greater wealth than the wealth of Egypt.

“By faith he left Egypt, not being afraid of the anger of the king, for he endured as seeing him who is invisible” (Heb. 11:27). He was looking to the reward. Because of that, Moses left Egypt by faith. When he left Egypt, he was not afraid of the anger of the king. That was an act of faith also.

Moses endured in his faith in God. The verb “endured,” from kartereo, means “persevere” (Gingrich); “endure patiently, persevere, persist.” (Friberg). This is an important quality of true faith—endurance. True faith perseveres.

How did Moses endure in his faith in God? The writer gives us the reason in v. 27—“for he endured as seeing him who is invisible.” Translated literally, the Greek reads, “for, as seeing the Invisible One—he endured” (Heb 11:27, YLT). Moses endured because he “saw” the unseen God.

Does this mean that the writer is talking about Moses seeing God? No, because his emphasis is more of the faith of Moses, rather than on the visions of Moses. He is not so much concerned with Moses’ seeing God literally, as in Moses trusting God actually. The writer is speaking more about Moses’ endurance of faith, rather than his visions of faith. (Attridge) He is referring to Moses’ steadfast faith in the purposes of God when he left Egypt. (Ellingworth) The context is about looking to a future reward of God (v. 26). Thus, the writer is saying that Moses’ faith endured because he is looking unto the invisible God, i. e., the faithfulness of God and the fulfillment of the promises of God. On the same vein, the writer can then urge his readers to “run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus” (Heb. 12:1-2).

A good example of Moses’ God-focused faith is when he kept the Passover. “By faith he kept the Passover and sprinkled the blood, so that the Destroyer of the firstborn might not touch them” (Heb. 11:28). God promised to deliver Israel from the Egyptians. But God had to judge the Egyptians. His judgment came with the death of every firstborn in Egypt. Yet God promised that He will spare the firstborn of Israel. Now because Moses looked forward to the fulfillment of God’s salvation of Israel, he kept the Passover.

The Passover was a memorial of God’s passing over the houses of the children of Israel in Egypt. It was a memorial of how the LORD spared the Israelites from the destroyer of the firstborn. The LORD commanded the Israelites to kill the Passover lamb. They were to dip hyssop in the blood of the lamb. They were to touch the two doorposts of their houses with the blood of the lamb. When the LORD saw the blood of the lamb on the doorposts, He passed over the door. He did not allow the Destroyer to enter the house to strike them.

By faith, Moses kept the Passover. He established the Passover for Israel. It was an act of faith. It shows that he fixed his eyes on God’s plan to save Israel. Moses’ faith endures because it keeps on believing on the fulfillment of the purposes of the invisible God.

Conclusion

Faith cancels the fear of man. Faith chooses the plan of God over the pleasures of sin. Faith counts on God’s future reward over worldly wealth. Faith continues steadfast by looking to God.

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