From a Sunday Morning
Forming Our Generation For God
Hebrews 11:3 says, “By faith we understand that the universe was formed at God’s command.” The word “universe” is the Greek word “aion” which means “ages, generations, universe, periods of time.” The word “command” is the Greek word “rhema” which means “a spoken word”. It refers to God revealing his word. Rotherham translates this verse as: “By faith we understand that the ages have been fit together by declaration of God.”
Chapter 11 is about the elders(11:2) who heard God’s rhema (spoken word, or plan) for them in their aion (time period or generation.) Men like Abel, Enoch, Noah, Abraham all understood God’s plan and purpose for their life and obeyed. These men “formed” the time period they lived in because they heard and obeyed God’s command for their lives and understood what He was doing in their generation.
Notice that the listing of generations that God spoke to began in the garden and go all the way through the Old Testament and the years leading up to the time of the writing of this letter to the Hebrews. The list of names cover the entire scope of history. God forms history from beginning to end through people. This includes you today.
There are five things to notice about
the people listed:
1) They were given a unique task that no one before or after would copy. Only one ark was built. No one will again build the ark, offer their son, deliver Israel, or hide the spies. You can not copy. You must hear God yourself.
2) The now/but not yet concept that means they did not receive what was promised because we have not reached the end, but they did receive the part of the promise they needed to fulfill their part in history. (Hb.11:13,39; 6:15)
3) Greatness was often achieved in the most simple way.. Isaac blessed Jacob, Jacob worshiped as he was dying, Joseph spoke of the future exodus. These men simply handed the promises of God to the next generation.
4) Every one of us is connected to a continuum of events. We are not a lone identity. God will connect us and our “time period.”
5) The force of our lives is our personal righteousness. We must “strengthen our feeble arms and weak knees” (we ourselves must live righteously), “make level paths (set an example and be a light to others), “so the lame may not be disabled, but rather healed (those lost in this generation may see the truth clearly through your life.) (Hb.12:12-13)
People help “form”
their generation because
they obey God’s command for their lives and understand what He is doing.