32 How much more do I need to say? It would take too long to recount the stories of the faith of Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, David, Samuel, and all the prophets.
33 By faith these people overthrew kingdoms, ruled with justice, and received what God had promised them. They shut the mouths of lions,
34 quenched the flames of fire, and escaped death by the edge of the sword. Their weakness was turned to strength. They became strong in battle and put whole armies to flight.
Hebrews 11:32-34 (NLT)
Welcome to the 23rd installment on my study of faith from Hebrews 11. This time, the writer grouped many people together under the banner of faith. Through faith, they achieved the impossible. Here is a list of their achievements through faith:
1. overthrew kingdoms
2. ruled with justice
3. received what God had promised them
4. shut the mouths of lions,
5. quenched the flames of fire
6. escaped death by the edge of the sword.
7. weakness was turned to strength.
8. became strong in battle and put whole armies to flight.
In this article, we are going to look into each of them in details because I believe they are for us, believers and the only way we can have these achievements is through faith.
The term “kingdoms” here refers to the dominion of the enemy. In today’s context, it refers to the Kingdom Of Darkness. Satan had dominated the world since the fall of Man. After Jesus died and rose again, Satan’s right over this world had been legally terminated. However, he is not leaving. He is still exercising control in killing, stealing and destroying. Why didn’t God stop him? The answer is this is not his job. He had returned the authority of this world back to us.
18 Jesus came and told his disciples, “I have been given all authority in heaven and on earth.
19 Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.
20 Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you. And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”
Matthew 28:18-20 (NLT)
Jesus got all the authority back. If you are in him, the authority is yours as well. This means, as believers we too have the access on all the authority in heaven and on earth. However, having all this authority is useless unless we put them to use.
Most people in this world are still living the limiting lifestyle at the mercy of the devil because they do not know Jesus had taken back the authority of heaven and earth for them. Many are poor, sick, depressed and suffering because they did not know that they are supposed to live in the blessing of God. This is why we need to tell them the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Only they will they be set free. Free to live their lives in prosperity, health, long life, joy, peace and with every blessings from God. When we give them the Gospel, we overthrow the Kingdom of Darkness in their lives.
Please note that when Jesus said “go and make disciples of all the nations”, he did not mean every Christian must become missionaries or go for mission trips. This is the lie I got from my previous church. The Bible tells us that every member of the church is like a member of the same body. Therefore, not every Christian is to follow the exact footsteps of Kenneth Copeland in bringing the Gospel to the world. You may be called to be a mission financier. Your role is to make lots of money and channel a portion of it into ministries that are involved in bringing the Gospel to the world. Or you may be called as a doctor, help people to live long enough for the Gospel to reach them. No matter what role you are in, play it well and in faith because you are overthrowing the Kingdom of Darkness in people’s lives. Your reward will be great.
If you can’t think of any specific role you can play, just aim to be a financier. Allow me to convince you why you should be one. Financiers are rich. As a mission financier, you will have riches on earth and in heaven. If you already have a role, just take on another one as a mission financier. There is not limit on the amount of roles you can play. What you need most is faith.
Ruled With Justice
People who live by faith are the best people to be in authority because they can rule with justice. I have written another article entitled, “When The Godly Are In Authority The People Rejoice” posted on January 29, 2008 that gives further explanations on this issue. I suggest you to read it.
Received What God Had Promised Them
If you have been reading my articles, this part should not be a problem to you.
24 I tell you, you can pray for anything, and if you believe that you’ve received it, it will be yours.
Mark 11: 24 (NLT)
Shut The Mouths Of Lions, Quenched The Flames Of Fire & Escaped Death By The Edge Of The Sword.
These situations are found in the book of Daniel. Daniel and friends were working for a foreign government where they very faced with jealous civil servants who wanted to kill them. There could be times where you realize that people are plotting against you even though you have not offended them. People just hate you. Even right now as you read this article, there could be people out there talking bad about you and plotting to remove you from your job. Welcome to the world of politics.
If you are in this position, God has a word for you: “Fear not for I am with you.” Your God is always with you. He who is in you is greater than he who is in this world. So what if your enemies have succeeded in throwing you to the lions, flames or used a sword against you? Your God is greater than all of them. If he can deliver Daniel and his friends, he can deliver you. All you need to do is to trust in him and live in faith.
Weakness Was Turned To Strength
I like this part. Who does not have weakness? The question we should ask ourselves is not whether we have any weakness. The real question we should ask ourselves is whether we can trust our God to fulfill the desires of our hearts regardless of our weakness.
Most people in the world are negative because they focus on their weakness. When asked on why they are not as successful as they wished to be, they will give you all types of answers like, not enough education, cannot speak well, no connection, IQ too low, too young, too old, born in the wrong race, born in the wrong country, born with the wrong color of skin, born in the wrong family and all types of excuses. The irony is, whatever weakness you think is hindering you, there are people with the same weakness become rich.
Focusing on our weakness will take you nowhere. Instead we should build our faith because through faith God can turn our weakness into strength.
Became Strong In Battle And Put Whole Armies To Flight
The moment you have decided to live by faith, you are sending shockwaves to the pit of hell. They have an earthquake (or should I call it hellquake?) there. The Kingdom Of Darkness will list you as an enemy and you will be attacked. Satan will send his armies of devils and religious people to attack you. Their only objective is to get you off faith.
Kenneth Copeland is the best example of modern day Christian being persecuted by lies and slanders of the religious people. The enemies have been doing all they can to get him off faith. However, just because they are doing all they can, it does not mean they must succeed. Hebrews 11:32-34 tells us that through faith we will become strong in battle and put whole armies to flight. In other words, we are destined to win. Our victory is guaranteed by God himself. The only way we can lose is when give up before our victory. So, don’t give up. Victory is yours.
Kenneth Copeland did not give up. As a result he got richer and his ministries grow larger while his enemies are still drowning in their bitterness and hate.
In conclusion, faith I what you need to overcome every obstacle that stands in you way. Through faith, you can achieve anything you desire.