Therefore since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight and the sin that clings so closely, and let us run with perseverance the race that is set before us.
It was faith that enabled Israel to pass through the Red Sea while the Egyptians perished. All the men and women of the Old Testament conquered by faith. Faith allowed some to receive their dead back alive. The same faith sustained others who were badly mistreated.
But all of these people, although they had faith, did not receive the promise of God in Christ.
Despite the emphasis on obeying the Law in the Old Testament, it was faith that led all of the great people in Israel’s history. Faith is the unshakable trust that God is with us whether we are conquering kingdoms or are being sawn in two.
There are some people who want to return to the Old Testament Law. They say that we are “grafted in” and must therefore live as the Hebrews did. But this chapter says that those old-time believers are actually made perfect in us. We have a better promise, a higher revelation, and so the older promise is no longer needed.
Thank you Lord for the faith of those who trusted you before Jesus. Help me to trust you in all things every day. Amen.