Saturday, April 28, 2018

2018.04.28 Hopewell @Home ▫ Hebrews 11:20-22

Questions for Littles: Whose faith does v20 describe? Whom did Isaac bless by faith? Concerning what did Isaac bless them? Whose faith does v21 describe? When does he demonstrate that faith? Whom does he bless? What else does he do when he blesses them? Whose faith does v22 describe? When does he demonstrate that faith? Of what does he make mention? Concerning what does he give instructions? 
In the second half of week’s sermon text, the demonstration of faith shifts from reflection of God’s love to confidence in God’s power. Abraham didn’t actually have to see Isaac resurrected on Mount Moriah, because the Lord prevented him from slaying his son.

In these three verses, the man exercising faith most certainly needs to be sure of resurrection. First, there’s Isaac, who thought he could die any moment (cf. Gen 27:2). Even at that point, Isaac is fighting the Lord’s words from when the twins were still in the womb. Yet, when he realizes that God’s word cannot be undone, the Lord strengthens his faith, and Isaac blesses his sons with sure, resurrection-hope.

Then, there’s Jacob. Jacob, who was terrified for his life of Esau not once but twice. Jacob, who was devastated when he thought Joseph was dead. Jacob, who was devastated when he thought Benjamin was dead. Jacob had treated death like an insurmountable obstacle his whole life. Now, he’s sitting on his literal death-bed, but he’s not devastated; he’s worshiping. He’s blessing his grandsons and bowing his head in worship over the top of his staff.

Finally, there’s Joseph. Joseph has been certain of his future in this life ever since he had those dreams as a boy. But this verse isn’t about his future in this life. This verse is about what comes after his death: the exodus, just as God has promised.

But Joseph is sure of a future for more than Israel. He’s sure of a future for himself. Joseph knows that even after he dies, and his body has decomposed, he won’t be done with his bones yet.

And he wants Israel to know it too. He wants them to hope not in the promised land in Canaan, but in the Lord as their dwelling place. He wants them to trust God not merely for rewards in this life, but for an everlasting life of the never-ending reward that is the Lord Himself.

He plans on glorifying and enjoying God forever, soul AND body. And, dear reader, the Holy Spirit has given us this passage so that you would too.
What plans do you have for your body at death? Whom will it teach what?
Suggested Songs: ARP30 “O Lord, I Will Exalt You” or HB209 “Thine Is the Glory”

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