August 22, 2018 Ponder
Working on a message series from Hebrews 11, I am reminded of how much faith those heroes had and it was based on so little information. It is good for me to remember how privileged I am to have a completed Bible. The early followers of God lived Hebrews 11:1 – “faith that made them sure of what they hoped for and confident of what they did not see.”
I struggle with Adam and Eve listening to the counterfeit god, Satan. They were living in the Presence of Creator God and in a perfect environment. At least Adam was aware of some of the creation events – actually participated in the creation of Eve from his own body. He went to sleep alone and woke up with a wife. Pretty amazing!
One could believe that this first couple had enough information to see through the crafty deceit of Satan and tell him to go away. But what about Abel? Think of what he did not have – yet he still honored God with an obedient heart.
Abel did not see inside the Garden of Eden. He lived with parents who themselves were disobedient and knew nothing about parenting that comes from ancestors and peers. We have no information to suggest that they were a part of the discussions that led to their offerings – Abel to obey and Cain to do his own thing.
Example is a powerful influence in human development. God designed the human race to have parents who would demonstrate love for God, an attitude of respect for authority and a work ethic that would contribute to the building of a strong community. Abel had little or none of this – yet he offered the correct sacrifice and is remembered as a righteous man.
I have an entire Bible of example and still find myself struggling with lack of faith. I am challenged and encouraged by the faith of Abel.
-Pastor Bill Ehmann