Monday, May 16, 2016

A Cloud of Witnesses

I have been pondering Hebrews 12:1. It is a difficult
verse with different opinions. I now throw my hat
into the ring!

'...seeing we also are compassed about with so great 
cloud of witnesses...let us run with patience the 
race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus...'

'...since we are surrounded by so great a 
cloud of witnesses...let us run with endurance, 
the race set before us, looking unto Jesus...'

'Since we have such a huge crowd of 
men of faith watching from the grandstand...let us 
run with patience, the particular race that God has 
set before us.' Living Bible.

Compassed about, surrounded in the Greek implies
those who are:
'about, above, 
on our behalf to see how it will go with us.'
It is positive.
They are rooting for our success!

The word in the Greek for 'witness' was a huge
surprise to me. It means, 'martyr.'

It would appear that those who have gone before and
suffered loss in their faith--David, Samuel, Barak--
and those whose blood was shed--Jeremiah, Peter, Paul,
are part of a group, that grows daily larger. They are
shouting to us:

'Wake up! Run! Don't give up! Courage, mate. 
No, get up! You can do it! Keep your eyes fixed 
on Jesus! There is a prize at the end. We made it, 
we are here, it is real, it is eternal. 
GO! GO! GO!'

Reader, I believe that those who have gone before are
aware of the believers who are running the race that
they have won. They are to us,
a great cloud of witnesses, 
who, strong in faith, have made it to the finish line.
The seen and the unseen must not be far apart, but
we in this dimension are the ones who can't see.

Those who are in prison are not alone;
those who are facing great loss, are not alone;
those who have died as martyrs, were not alone.

You are not alone.

Take courage, keep going, don't stop...

Jesus is our prize!

A hymn that my husband loves:
For All The Saints

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