hebrews 11:3 sermon

"How do you know I have a son? Does He press the overtures of His gospel? Grace doth not make men simple, but rather perfects human learning. The Bible is meant for the instruction of those of every age, country, and class; it is not meant to teach only a few superior minds, but to afford spiritual food for the whole human race. (2)The majesty and greatness of God.2. Donald Hagner puts it this way (Encountering the Book of Hebrews [Baker], p. 142): From the examples of faith lifted up in this chapter it seems clear that what is not primarily in view is what we feel or possess—assurance, confidence—but rather, how faith substantiates, or gives substance to, what is promised, how it provides evidence of what is believed about unseen and hoped-for realities. It serves to stir you up to act faith. If we see personality in an effect, reason says there must have been personality in the cause. The universe was absolutely created by Go&, Faith Apprehending the Mystery of Creation, The Mystery of Creation Revealed to Faith, The mystery of creation revealed to faith, Faith apprehending the mystery of creation. This is not a merely artificial distinction. "Lift up your eyes on high, and behold, Who hath created these things." Are you not differently impressed and affected?1. S. Candlish, D. D.)That the world was framed in an accurateT. Instead of questioning the watch concerning its maker, you now question the maker concerning his watch. It sees Him as the author of order ("the worlds were framed"; Gr., καταρτίζω, to make thoroughly right or fit). Of nothing; which does not denote any matter of which they were formed, but the term from which God brought them; when they had no being He gave them one (Colossians 1:16; Romans 11:36). "The heavens declare the glory of God; the firmament showeth his handicraft." In that case you proceed to reason out from the manifold proofs of design in nature's works the idea of an intelligent Author, and to draw inferences from what you see respecting His character, purposes, and plans. (5) We learn hence the properties of faith to have knowledge, assent, and obedience in it; therefore it is not a blind reliance, but a clear, distinct persuasion of such truths, concerning which human discourse can give us no satisfaction. That God existed before the visible universe. Manton, D. D.: —I. Are you not differently impressed and affected?1. How does all of this relate to Hebrews 11? It is apparent, however, even in these and similar passages, that created things are mentioned, not as arguments, but rather as illustrations; not as suggesting the idea of God, the Creator, but as unfolding and expanding the idea, otherwise obtained. You at once conclude that it did not grow there, and that it could not be fashioned by chance. said the baron, "by speaking in this way." "O Lord, how manifold are Thy works! By faith we understand that the universe was formed by God's command, so that what is seen was not made out of what was visible. 3. Hebrews 11:3 English Standard Version (ESV). But now in matters of religion, we had need of external and foreign helps. Are you not differently impressed and affected?1. The worlds were framed by the word of God. None discern truths with more comfort and satisfaction than a believer; it solves all doubts and riddles of reason. 2:10; James 2:14-26). And seeing whatever we have is from Him, it should be used and employed for Him: For "all things were created by Him and for Him" (Colossians 1:16).3. The evil of sin is no positive being, it being but a defect or want, and therefore is not reckoned among the things which God made, but owed its existence to the will of fallen angels and men. The disposition and apt placing of all things.4. To ILLUSTRATE THIS BY SOME SIMILITUDES OUT OF SCRIPTURE.1. All things whatsoever, besides God, were created (Revelation 4:11). I answer, They were all "very good" (Genesis 1:31). WHEREIN THIS ORDER AND BEAUTY OF THE WORLD DOTH CONSIST.1. But now, suppose that while you are thus engaged, with the watch in your hand, a living person suddenly appears before you, and announces himself, and says, It was I who made this watch — it was I who put it there. Nay, you may begin in this way to know God. It is most pleasing and useful to cultivate such a habit as this. S. Candlish, D. D.)That the world was framed in an accurateT. Boston, D. D.)The fact of creation an object of faithR. I. God is our Sovereign Lord Proprietor, and may do in us, on us, anal by us, what He will (Romans 9:20, 21).4. George Muller was another man who made God’s promises real by faith, and proved in a visible way the reality of the invisible God. 4. He has always, as He did at first, revealed Himself, not circuitously by His works, but summarily and directly by His Word. It is not to be taken here in a large sense, as sometimes it is used in Scripture, for any production of things wherein second causes have their instrumentality, as Psalm 104:30. HEBREWS 11:21 “JACOB WORSHIPPING UPON HIS STAFF” A) Jacob was a man … There is no case so desperate, but faith may get sure footing with respect to it in the power and Word of God. The whole world is but God's shop, where are the masterpieces of His wisdom and majesty; these are seen very much in the order of causes, and admirable contrivance of the world. II. How long might one sprinkle colors upon canvas, with a careless hand, before they would make the exact picture of u man? It was for His own glory (Proverbs 16:4; Romans 11:36). He supposes you to be previously unacquainted with such a work of art. This wisdom of God shown in creation is assuredly not meant to be devoid of influence upon His rational, responsible creatures; it should teach submission on the part of man, and beget pious trust in his heart. So in developing the theme of enduring faith, our author’s first point is that faith is the means of realizing spiritual reality. The wise government and conservation of all things according to the rules and laws of creation. observed the other. While this is an interesting question, before understanding the age of the earth we need to understand the "Who" of Creation. Is not your position instantly changed? Devils being angels, are God's creatures; but God did not make them evil, or devils, but they made themselves so. The history of human philosophy consists largely of a series of records of the vain efforts of men to account for the universe apart from the true cause of its origin. "Can you fancy I am blind?" And there are these three attributes of God that especially shine forth in this work of creation, namely, His wisdom, power, and goodness.IX. It is stated that in our sky there are one hundred millions of stars visible by the aid of a telescope, each of which is the center of a cluster of tributary stars, making together "a great multitude which no man can number." observed the other. We see some creatures are ravenous; other creatures are poisonous; all are frail, and still decaying and hasting to their own ruin. Much of natural religion depends upon it, and holy Scripture fully recognises its propriety. (2)The majesty and greatness of God.2. The foreigner answered with cool indifference, that he knew nothing about God, for he had never seen Him. No notice was takes of this observation at the time; but the next morning the baron pointed out to the visitor a beautiful picture which hung on the wall, and said, "My son drew that!" Grace doth not make men simple, but rather perfects human learning. There is the daylight of glory, which is the sun when it arises in its strength and brightness; and there is the light of faith, which is like the moon, a light which shines in a dark place; then there is the weak and feeble ray of reason, which is like the light of the lesser stars. We should use all the creatures we make use of with an eye to God, and due thankfulness to Him, the Giver; employing them in our service, soberly and wisely, considering they stand related to God as their Creator, and are the workmanship of His own hands.5. in wisdom hast Thou made them all: the earth is full of Thy riches." returned the baron. "Why, I see the sun travelling through the skies and shedding its glories over one of the greatest countries in the world; and I behold a mighty river at my feet, and a vast range of woods, and pastures, and orchards, and vineyards, and cattle and sheep feeding in rich fields." 3. Still, even in this method of discovering God, if your faith is to be of an influential kind at all, you must proceed, when you have made the discovery, just to reverse the process by which you made it; and having arrived at the conception of a Creator, you must now go back again to the creation, taking Him along with you, as one with whom you have personally become acquainted, and hearing what He has to say concerning His own works. It discovers the glory of God. The world is not a work of chance, but of counsel and rare contrivance. Many truths are less wonderful than this.(T. By faith Moses gained God’s approval, even though he received the world’s scorn. "The worlds were framed by the word of God." Hebrews 11:3 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓] Hebrews 11:3, NIV: "By faith we understand that the universe was formed at God's command, so that what is seen was not made out of what was visible." The world is not a work of chance, but of counsel and rare contrivance. Again, on the other hand, observe what weight this idea, if fully realised, must have, if you regard the Lord Himself as saying to you, in special reference to each of the things which He has made: I created it, and I am now testifying to you that I created it. There was not the least defect in the work; but everything was beautiful, as it was the effect of infinite wisdom as well as almighty power. asked the baron. said the baron, "by speaking in this way." Oh! "Faith speaks of God ordering things "according to the good pleasure of His will" (Ephesians 1:5), and reason hears and is satisfied. There is the daylight of glory, which is the sun when it arises in its strength and brightness; and there is the light of faith, which is like the moon, a light which shines in a dark place; then there is the weak and feeble ray of reason, which is like the light of the lesser stars. You receive, perhaps, the same truths as before, but with a freshness and a force unknown before. in wisdom hast Thou made them all: the earth is full of Thy riches." said the baron, "by speaking in this way." God, who is Spirit, is eternal. For this is that act of the mind which, in a religious sense, is called faith.III. It stimulates thought; it awakens admiration, etc. Faith sees a beginning of the universe (John 1:1). "Why, I see the sun travelling through the skies and shedding its glories over one of the greatest countries in the world; and I behold a mighty river at my feet, and a vast range of woods, and pastures, and orchards, and vineyards, and cattle and sheep feeding in rich fields." Does He speak to you concerning other matters, intimately touching your present and future weal? That matter is not eternal. Devils being angels, are God's creatures; but God did not make them evil, or devils, but they made themselves so.V. It is apparent, however, even in these and similar passages, that created things are mentioned, not as arguments, but rather as illustrations; not as suggesting the idea of God, the Creator, but as unfolding and expanding the idea, otherwise obtained. The mutual ministry and help of the creatures one to another.6. Hebrews 11:3, ESV: "By faith we understand that the universe was created by the word of God, so that what is seen was not made out of things that are visible." IV. In that case you proceed to reason out from the manifold proofs of design in nature's works the idea of an intelligent Author, and to draw inferences from what you see respecting His character, purposes, and plans. He supposes you to be previously unacquainted with such a work of art. How did it come there, and how were its parts so curiously put together? LET'S HAVE FAITH! To answer all the objections of reason, and settle the truth in the soul, and to improve it for spiritual uses and advantages, and to facilitate the belief of other truths upon this ground; did He make the world out of nothing? "The heavens declare the glory of God; the firmament showeth his handicraft." It is not to ascend from nature up to nature's God, but to descend from God to God's nature; not to hear the creation speaking of the Creator, but to hear the Creator speaking of the creation. That was God, and He only.1. To be without faith in God's Word is to be "void of understanding" respecting His works. Thus " through faith we understand that the worlds were made by the Word of God; so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear." That God is the Creator of the visible universe. It discovers the odiousness of sin that disjointed the frame of nature.(T. God created all things, the world, and all the creatures that belong to it. YOU are all of you familiar with this idea, that, in contemplating the works of creation, you should ascend from nature to nature's God. WE UNDERSTAND THE TRUTH AND WONDERS OF THE CREATION BY FAITH, AND NOT BY REASON.1. The baron then took his visitor to the village and showed him a neat building which his son had fitted up for a school, where the children of the poor were daily instructed free of expense. "I shall soon have a very exalted opinion of him." That cannot be, for the apostle himself enjoins you, however in respect of meekness you are to be like children, still in understanding to be men. We understand and believe this, not as a deduction of reasoning, but as a matter of fact, declared and revealed to us. This the Scripture plainly testifies (Genesis 1:1). Hebrews 11:3 By faith we understand that the worlds were prepared by the word of God, so that what is seen was not made out of things which are visible. Faith is the means of understanding the origin of all that is (11:3). (4) It informs us that religion is not illiterate. 2. Instead of questioning the watch concerning its maker, you now question the maker concerning his watch. You hold it in your hand; you begin to examine its structure, to raise questions in your own mind, and to form conjectures. You speculate concerning his plans and purposes. This is not a merely artificial distinction. II. Such faith takes the future promises of God and makes them real in the present. How do rewards fit in with faith? That was God, and He only.1. Sight doesn't always secure certainty, and there may be the most absolute certainty without it. "Why, because I have seen his works; I am sure he must be both clever and good, or he would not have done all you have shown me." Let the people of God be ever so low, they can never be lower than when they were not at all (Isaiah 65:18).6. The only remedy and cure for this is faith, and external revelation from God. "Can you fancy I am blind?" Oh! III. "Indeed!" We see some creatures are ravenous; other creatures are poisonous; all are frail, and still decaying and hasting to their own ruin. God has but to utter his command, and that command at once becomes an embodied and- beautiful reality. To ILLUSTRATE THIS BY SOME SIMILITUDES OUT OF SCRIPTURE.1. Faith knows God as Creator by her simple dependence on Scripture declaration. It is not to ascend from nature up to nature's God, but to descend from God to God's nature; not to hear the creation speaking of the Creator, but to hear the Creator speaking of the creation. It discovers the glory of God. Both faith and works come from God. Again, the goodness of things is their perfection; and so everything was made agreeable to the idea thereof that was formed in the Divine mind. Certainly you do well to search out all those features in creation which reflect the glory of the Creator. It is true, there are some relics of reason left for human uses, and to leave us without excuse (John 1:9). Consider the subject of creation in the light simply of an argument of natural philosophy, and all is vague and dim abstraction. To answer all the objections of reason, and settle the truth in the soul, and to improve it for spiritual uses and advantages, and to facilitate the belief of other truths upon this ground; did He make the world out of nothing? Thus all beasts, cattle, and creeping things, and the body of man, were at first made of the earth and the dust of the ground; and the body of the first woman was made of a rib taken out of the man.II. They refused to bow down to Nebuchadnezzar’s idol, which caused the offended king to threaten to throw them into the blazing furnace. (6) It is the nature of faith to subscribe to a revelation in the Word, though reason give little assistance and aid. That God is the Creator of the visible universe. Our sins are as a secret fire that hath melted and burnt asunder the secret ties and confederations of nature.1. You will always be on guard. While the term is roughly equivalent to “world,” it allows for what modern science has established, that time is related to matter. You hear not what the mechanism has to say of the mechanic, but what the mechanic has to say of the mechanism. Does He tell you of your condition in respect of Him, and of His purposes in respect of you? V. FAITH REGARDING THE UNSEEN. It showeth us the excellency of order; how pleasing order and method is to God: God hath always delighted in it. That cannot be, for the apostle himself enjoins you, however in respect of meekness you are to be like children, still in understanding to be men. In this world reason had been enough, if man had continued in his innocency. WHO MADE THE WORD AND GAVE IT A BEGINNING? IX. In. To ILLUSTRATE THIS BY SOME SIMILITUDES OUT OF SCRIPTURE.1. "He must be a clever youth," returned the Frenchman, blandly. In this world reason had been enough, if man had continued in his innocency. In even the smaller parts of the Creator's workmanship we trace the operation of a wisdom, alike in larger and in smaller objects; in the star, and in the insect; in the elephant, and in the fly; in the mightiest of forest trees, and in the smallest tuft, or even blade of grass. His mind then was his only bible, and his heart his only law; but he tasted of the tree of knowledge and hereby he and we got nothing but ignorance. It is practically most important. So that the Scriptural method on this subject is exactly the reverse of what is called the natural. But even if He does not, let it be known to you, O king, that we are not going to serve your gods or worship the golden image that you have set up.”. You speculate concerning his plans and purposes. God is a most glorious being, infinitely lovely and desirable, possessed of every perfection and excellency. We understand and believe this, not as a deduction of reasoning, but as a matter of fact, declared and revealed to us. "Indeed!" More particularly — see, first of all, what weight this single idea, once truly and vividly realised, must add to all the other communications which He makes on other subjects to you. And this reason itself teacheth: for whatsoever is eternal, the being of it is necessary, and it is subject to no alterations. (3) It shows us the great advantage that we have by faith, and by the written Word. the green earth below tell of our Father's home; if day and night, light and darkness, are symbols of the word God has spoken out of himself in the creation of the world." Consider the subject of creation in the light simply of an argument of natural philosophy, and all is vague and dim abstraction. "The worlds were framed," or arranged, or adjusted by the word of God. For this is that act of the mind which, in a religious sense, is called faith.III. THUS, IN A RELIGIOUS VIEW, AND FOR RELIGIOUS PURPOSES, THE TRUTH CONCERNING GOD AS THE CREATOR MUST BE RECEIVED, NOT AS A DISCOVERY OF YOUR OWN REASON, FOLLOWING A TRAIN OF THOUGHT, BUT AS A DIRECT COMMUNICATION FROM A REAL PERSON, EVEN FROM THE LIVING AND PRESENT GOD. You will not believe the personal information that the person shares with you, because you think, “I don’t trust this guy!”. 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