The Faith of the Sons of God
In the letter to the Hebrews, Paul describes faith:
“Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.”
– Hebrews 11:1
In short, it is the ability to believe without seeing. Continuing on, Paul enumerates the experiences of several of the men and women of old as examples of faith. (Hebrews 11:2-38) And he concludes:
“These were all commended for their faith, yet none of them received what had been promised, since God had planned something better for us so that only together with us would they be made perfect.”
– Hebrews 11:39-40
Our hope is a better hope because it leads to freedom, sonship and everlasting life in the heavens with the Father. Nevertheless, we can look at their examples as an assurance that exercising faith has its rewards. Moreover, rather than passively marveling at the faith of the men and women of old, we should be discovering those qualities in ourselves and becoming new expressions of bold and faithful living for our generation and future generations to look upon. To future generations, we will be the ‘men and women of old.’
And who knows, the “trials of many kinds” may have enormous value to the Father, beyond the value to ourselves. (James 1:2) We do not believe that our achieving perfection is for the sole purpose of glorifying ourselves. There must be a purpose to all the effort the Father and the Son put into creating man, raising him to perfection, even sending the Christ who suffered on our behalf. Surely there will be work for us to do.
“Later Jesus found him at the temple and said to him, “See, you are well again. Stop sinning or something worse may happen to you.” The man went away and told the Jewish leaders that it was Jesus who had made him well. So, because Jesus was doing these things on the Sabbath, the Jewish leaders began to persecute him. In his defense Jesus said to them, “My Father is always at his work to this very day, and I too am working.’”
– John 5:14-17
As such, we wonder, as we keep our minds fixed on the things above (Colossians 2:2), if there are certain assignments in the heavens for those of us who have exercised extraordinary faith under difficult circumstances. We can imagine there may be tasks that require the services of Sons who can work faithfully in isolation from their brothers; perhaps assignments in other confused worlds like ours; perhaps assignments on newly developing worlds. Take, for example, the high priest Melchizedek:
“This Melchizedek was king of Salem and priest of God Most High. He met Abraham returning from the defeat of the kings and blessed him, and Abraham gave him a tenth of everything. First, the name Melchizedek means “king of righteousness”; then also, “king of Salem” means “king of peace.” Without father or mother, without genealogy, without beginning of days or end of life, resembling the Son of God, he remains a priest forever.”
– Hebrews 7:1-3
We wonder if Melchizedek was such a perfected soul on assignment to our planet! After all, it is written in Revelation that some of us will serves as “a kingdom and priests.” (Revelation 5:10) Is not that was Melchizedek was?
Whatever the case, we can be confident that our hard work at perfecting our faith will be for a grander purpose. So while we are here, let us do our utmost to grow in faith, cherishing our divine freedom, and working as ambassadors of the Christ, and in service of one another.
“Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another, for whoever loves others has fulfilled the law.”
– Romans 13:8