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Risk

Hebrews 11:23-31

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“By faith Moses, after he was born, was hidden by his parents for three months, because they saw that the child was beautiful, and they didn’t fear the king’s edict. [24] By faith Moses, when he had grown up, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter [25] and chose to suffer with the people of God rather than to enjoy the short-lived pleasure of sin. [26] For he considered reproach for the sake of the Messiah to be greater wealth than the treasures of Egypt, since his attention was on the reward. [27] By faith he left Egypt behind, not being afraid of the king’s anger, for he persevered, as one who sees Him who is invisible. [28] By faith he instituted the Passover and the sprinkling of the blood, so that the destroyer of the firstborn might not touch them. [29] By faith they crossed the Red Sea as though they were on dry land. When the Egyptians attempted to do this, they were drowned. [30] By faith the walls of Jericho fell down after being encircled for seven days. [31] By faith Rahab the prostitute received the spies in peace and didn’t perish with those who disobeyed.” (HCSB)

 Whenever I’m walking down a hallway, I can’t resist stopping and reading the motivational posters hanging on the wall.  I saw a couple of parody posters this past week that I got a kick out of.  The first one says, “Idiocy:  Never underestimate the power of stupid people in large groups.”  The second one says, “Meetings:  None of us is as dumb as all of us.”

 Parodies aside, I saw a quote this last week that should be on one of those posters if it isn’t already, it says,  “Excellence is the result of caring more than others think is wise, risking more than others think is safe, dreaming more than others think is practical, and expecting more than others think is possible.”
 Today we are talking about “risking more than others think is safe.”

 In the previous passage, we learned that one component of faith is the ability to follow God even when it is counter intuitive.  Abraham was willing to go to the land that God would show him without a roadmap or an explanation.  Some would call it blind faith, I’d call it seeing faith—the kind of faith that can see without sensorial stimuli.  In our study together, we discussed that Abraham wasn’t simply following his intuition and ignoring the sensorial information, he was trusting God.  His faith was the evidence of unseen things.

 The section of scripture we are studying today focuses on another great hero of the faith—Moses, but Moses isn’t the only person mentioned.  Faithful people are not Lone Rangers; God surrounds them with other faithful people who make them successful.  The writer of Hebrews begins this section by mentioning a righteous woman—his mother, and ends it by mentioning one with an unrighteous lifestyle—Rahab the prostitute.  In between, it chronicles some of Moses’ greatest accomplishments:  leading the exodus, instituting the Passover, and crossing the Red Sea on dry land.  It also mentions the work of his protégé, the conquest of Jericho.

 I’ve mentioned the importance of teamwork here, but I also want you to see that Moses’ work continued long after he was gone.  Actually, he never realized the fullness of his work, that didn’t happen until he passed the mantel of leadership over to Joshua, who would lead the conquest into the Promised Land.  God used these people to deliver His people from captivity, one thing they all had in common with one another was their willingness to set aside their own agendas to be a part of a great cause.

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