God has given us a Great Cloud of Witnesses:
May they encourage us to better Trust, Obey, and Serve our Lord.
Introduction: James 4:14 "Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a lithe while and then vanishes." Stand strong in Christ; don't be a "muckraker".
A. We are saved by Faith, but Faith is not blind. Hebrew 12;1-2": Wherefore, seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses. let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which does so easily ensnare us, and let us run with patience (endurance) the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus,.. "
B. Conclusions. We are Blessed; we have God's Word; we have the blood of Jesus that saves us by faith, we have his Holy Spirit within us; God hears our prayers and answers them; we can have moment to moment fellowship with Him; we are part of the universal church. Thank you Lord!
Psalm 119:98-100, 105; Romans 6:21; Ecclesiastes 12:13-14; John 17:1.3,8,11,14,15,20,21,23; Romans 10:9-10, Romans 13:11-12; Romans 15:4-6
1. Many witnesses given to us by God:
a. The record of the Bible
(1) Those who lived before us as witnesses of their faith and of the goodness of God: Genesis, Job, Psalms, Ecclesiastes, Acts, Romans 16: so many!. Hebrews 11 records many of God's people who's faith gave them courage to stay the course: Abel, Enoch, Noah, Abraham, Sarah, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph, Moses, Rahab, Gideon, Barak, Sampson, Jephthah, David, Samuel, the prophets, and others who died for their faith.
b. Created Life: Do you receive Blessings each day seeing God speak through His creation.
(2) God's Word from Genesis through Revelation: Truths that strengthen our faith: Psalm 119, Proverbs 1, Psalm 73, Luke 16: 19-31, John 3, Matthew 6:14, John 15:4-11, Romans 6:21, Romans 8:28-39, John 17, Revelation 3:14-22, Revelation 20-22.
(1) What does God say to you when he shows you Mayflies? (2500 different species)
(2) What does God teach you from watching birds?
(3) What does God teach you when enjoying or when being frustrated from your pets?
(4) What does God teach you using other insect types? (choose from approximately 1 million of those named by humans)
(5) Nature enriches our lives, point to the creator, and teaches us about ourselves: Genesis 1:24-25; Exodus 8; Job 39-40; Psalm 103:15-16; Psalm 104:14,21,27; Proverbs 6:6, 30:24-31; Matthew 6:26-30; Matthew 10: 29-31
c. The Cosmos: Clearly teaches the power and glory of God: Psalm 19:1-3; Job 38-41
d. People have touched our lives some for good; some for bad: These witnesses teach us how to live. Many people have touched our lives for good; some have strengthened us in Christ. Think of who has influenced your life by seemingly insignificant things that you still remember. Other people may have changed you for the better. Propose, each day to strengthen someone with a word of kindness, or a kind act, or sharing God's Truth with them, and you will be Blessed and will be a Blessing.
e. God's Holy Spirit: Without God's Holy Spirit, we cannot know God. When we accept Jesus as Savior and Lord, the Holy Spirit indwells us, gives understanding and gives guidance that unbelievers do not have. We need to listen to His voice. John 7: 38-39; John 14:16-18, 26; John 16:13; Romans 8:16, 26; 2 Corinthians 2:9-10; 1John 2:27