“So do not throw away your faith; it will be richly rewarded. You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what He has promised… For he that is righteous shall live by faith.” (Hebrews 10:35-38)
As the author of the book of Hebrews continues giving doubting disciples reasons why they should not throw away their faith, he says they should keep the faith because they need faith for living. Authentic disciples know they are saved by faith, but the disciples to whom he was writing had forgotten that they are also called to live by faith.
He quotes the key verse of Habakkuk’s prophecy written to suffering people. When we are suffering we need reminders that God has given us the faith to persevere and do the will of God in our crisis – until we receive what God has given us, the faith to believe will ultimately happen according to His promises.
I have observed a direct correlation between spiritual growth and suffering. The Greek word translated “persevere” in these verses is a quality God grows in those who are living by faith while they are suffering, according to the Apostle Paul (Romans 5: 3-5). Other authors of the New Testament agree with Paul.
The immediate response of many authentic disciples when they find themselves in a difficult situation is: “Lord, get me out of here!” When that doesn’t happen they are sometimes tempted to throw away their faith. The message conveyed by these verses is “Don’t throw away your faith. You need your faith to live through your crisis.”
Is this a message you need to hear today?
Dick Woodward, 03 December 2010