I am old enough to remember the first landing of man on the moon. What an exciting event that was...what a marvelous culmination of a decade of the space program, the tumultuous decade of the 1960's. Civil unrest, the war in Viet Nam, Hippies, the Cold War, the Beatles...wow what a decade that was. But certainly a peak was reached when Neil Armstrong made that "small step for man, one giant leap for mankind" in 1969. As we have been studying the book of Hebrews it occurred to me that our faith in the Lord Jesus is like the flag that Neil planted on the moon in 1969. It was, and is, proof that man had gone to a world that had only existed in his far off dreams for thousands of years. When we plant our trust in the death and resurrection of Jesus, as payment for our sins on a personal basis, we have planted our flag in Heaven itself. That flag of faith remains planted in Heaven for us and so we have absolute assurance that one day we will walk in Heaven, as surely as Neil Armstrong walked the moon. The reason this is important is that, once we are assured of our place with God in Heaven, we are free to live for Heaven's purposes rather than the limited purposes of this world. The things of this world, like our fleshly life itself, are temporary and ultimately failing to provide the greatest satisfaction. We learn in Hebrews that God will one day end this world, but the next world...designed and built by God...will never end. That is the world where our flag of faith is planted. So we are called in Hebrews to run an endurance race here...a marathon where we are tested and challenged by false and shallow substitutes but where we keep looking up at our flag planted in Heaven. If we live that kind of life we will wave like the flag of faith itself and point the way for others to an eternity with God!
Hebrews 10:35 So do not throw away this confident trust in the Lord. Remember the great reward it brings you! 36 Patient endurance is what you need now, so that you will continue to do God's will. Then you will receive all that he has promised.
Hebrews 11:1 Faith is the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen; it gives us assurance about things we cannot see.
Hebrews 12:1 Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge crowd of witnesses to the life of faith, let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us up. And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us. 2 We do this by keeping our eyes on Jesus, the champion who initiates and perfects our faith.
Hebrews 12:26 When God spoke from Mount Sinai his voice shook the earth, but now he makes another promise: "Once again I will shake not only the earth but the heavens also." 27 This means that all of creation will be shaken and removed, so that only unshakable things will remain.
28 Since we are receiving a Kingdom that is unshakable, let us be thankful and please God by worshiping him with holy fear and awe.