“By faith…”

Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. For by it the elders obtained a good report. – Hebrews 11:1-2

The 11th chapter of Hebrews is the chapter of the men who pleased God. Listen to their names: “By faith Abel offered unto God a more excellent sacrifice;” “By faith Enoch was translated;” “By faith Noah built an ark;” “By faith Abraham went out into a place that he should afterwards receive;” “By faith he sojourned in the land of promise;” “By faith Sarah bare Isaac;” “By faith Abraham offered up Isaac;” “By faith Moses gave up the wealth of Egypt;” “By faith Isaac blessed Jacob;” “By faith Jacob blessed the sons of Joseph;” “By faith Joseph, when he died, made mention of the departure of the children of Israel;” “By faith the Red Sea was dried up;” “By faith the walls of Jericho fell down;” “By faith the harlot Rahab was saved;” “And what more shall I say? for the time would fail me to tell of Gideon, and of Barak, and of Samson, and of Jephthae, of David also, and Samuel, and of the prophets.” But all these were men of faith. Others mentioned in Scripture, have done something; but God did not accept them. Men have humbled themselves, and yet God has not saved them. Ahab did, and yet his sins were never forgiven. Men have repented, and yet have not been saved, because their’s was the wrong repentance. Judas repented, and went and hanged himself, and was not saved. Men have confessed their sins, and have not been saved. Saul did it. He said to David, “I have sinned against thee, my son David;” and yet he went on as he did before. Multitudes have confessed the name of Christ, and have done many marvellous things, and yet they have never been pleasing to God, from this simple reason, that they had not faith.

“Without faith it is impossible to please God.” And I gather it from the fact that there never has been the case of a man recorded in Scripture who did please God without faith. ~ C.H. Spurgeon