Hebrews 11:1–12:8

Heroes of Faith

11 Now faith is the reality z of what is hoped for, the proof a of what is not seen. b For our ancestors won God’s approval by it.

By faith we understand that the universe was c created by God’s command, d e so that what is seen has been made from things that are not visible.

By faith Abel offered to God a better sacrifice than Cain did. By faith he was approved as a righteous man, because God approved his gifts, and even though he is dead, he still speaks through his faith. f

By faith Enoch was taken away so he did not experience death, and he was not to be found because God took him away. g For prior to his removal he was approved, since he had pleased God. h Now without faith it is impossible to please God, for the one who draws near to Him must believe that He exists and rewards those who seek Him.

By faith Noah, after he was warned about what was not yet seen and motivated by godly fear, built an ark to deliver his family. By faith he condemned the world and became an heir of the righteousness that comes by faith. i

By faith Abraham, when he was called, obeyed and went out to a place he was going to receive as an inheritance. He went out, not knowing where he was going. j By faith he stayed as a foreigner in the land of promise, living in tents with Isaac and Jacob, coheirs of the same promise. k 10 For he was looking forward to the city that has foundations, whose architect and builder is God. l

11 By faith even Sarah herself, when she was unable to have children, received power to conceive offspring, even though she was past the age, since she m considered that the One who had promised was faithful. n 12 Therefore from one man—in fact, from one as good as dead—came offspring as numerous as the stars of heaven and as innumerable as the grains of sand by the seashore. o

13 These all died in faith without having received the promises, but they saw them from a distance, p greeted them, and confessed that they were foreigners and temporary residents on the earth. q 14 Now those who say such things make it clear that they are seeking a homeland. 15 If they were thinking about where they came from, they would have had an opportunity to return. 16 But they now desire a better place—a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for He has prepared a city for them. r

17 By faith Abraham, when he was tested, offered up Isaac. s He received the promises and he was offering his unique son, 18 the one it had been said about, Your * seed will be traced t through Isaac. u v 19 He considered God to be able even to raise someone from the dead, w and as an illustration, x he received him back.

20 By faith Isaac blessed Jacob and Esau y concerning things to come. 21 By faith Jacob, when he was dying, blessed each of the sons of Joseph, and he worshiped, leaning on the top of his staff. z a 22 By faith Joseph, as he was nearing the end of his life, mentioned the exodus of the Israelites and gave instructions concerning his bones. b

23 By faith, after Moses was born, he was hidden by his parents for three months, because they saw that the child was beautiful, and they didn’t fear the king’s edict. c 24 By faith Moses, when he had grown up, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter 25 and chose to suffer with the people of God rather than to enjoy the short-lived pleasure of sin. d 26 For he considered the reproach because of the * Messiah to be greater wealth than the treasures of Egypt, since his attention was on the reward. e

27 By faith he left Egypt behind, not being afraid of the king’s anger, for Moses persevered as one who sees Him who is invisible. f 28 By faith he instituted the * Passover and the sprinkling of the blood, so that the destroyer of the firstborn might not touch the Israelites. 29 By faith they crossed the Red Sea as though they were on dry land. When the Egyptians attempted to do this, they were drowned. g

30 By faith the walls of Jericho fell down after being encircled by the Israelites for seven days. 31 By faith Rahab the prostitute received the spies in peace and didn’t perish with those who disobeyed. h

32 And what more can I say? Time is too short for me to tell about Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, i David, Samuel, and the prophets, j 33 who by faith conquered kingdoms, k administered justice, obtained promises, shut the mouths of lions, l 34 quenched the raging of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, gained strength after being weak, became mighty in battle, and put foreign armies to flight. m 35 Women received their dead—they were raised to life again. Some men were tortured, not accepting release, so that they might gain a better resurrection, 36 and others experienced mockings and scourgings, as well as bonds and imprisonment. n 37 They were stoned, o p they were sawed in two, they died by the sword, they wandered about in sheepskins, in goatskins, q destitute, afflicted, and mistreated. 38 The * world was not worthy of them. They wandered in deserts and on mountains, hiding in caves and holes in the ground.

39 All these were approved through their faith, but they did not receive what was promised, 40 since God had provided something better for us, so that they would not be made perfect without us. r

The Call to Endurance

12 Therefore, since we also have such a large cloud of witnesses s surrounding us, let us lay aside every weight and the sin that so easily ensnares us. Let us run with endurance t the race that lies before us, keeping our eyes on Jesus, u the source and perfecter v of our faith, who for the joy that lay before Him w endured a cross and despised the shame x and has sat down at the right hand of God’s throne.

Fatherly Discipline

For consider Him who endured such hostility from sinners against Himself, so that you won’t grow weary and lose heart. y In struggling against sin, you have not yet resisted to the point of shedding your blood. And you have forgotten the exhortation that addresses you as sons:

My son, do not take the Lord’s discipline lightly

or faint when you are reproved by Him,

for the Lord disciplines the one He loves

and punishes every son He receives. z a

Endure suffering as discipline: God is dealing with you as sons. For what son is there that a father does not discipline? But if you are without discipline—which all b receive c—then you are illegitimate children and not sons. d

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