Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Finishing Well

"Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.
For consider Him who has endured such hostility by sinners against Himself, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart."
Hebrews 12:1-3

The writer of Hebrews likens living the Christian life to running a race. In the previous chapter, which is commonly called the "Hall of Faith", we see a roll call of those who have gone before us and endured the extreme challenges to their faith all the way to the end of their lives. This "cloud of witnesses" finished well and certainly they are an encouragement to us. But it is Jesus Christ, the one who initiated our faith and who is perfecting it, that we are to fix our eyes upon. He is the supreme example of finishing well. Christ fixed His eyes on the joy He would receive after enduring the cross, receiving the reward of sitting down at the right hand of the Father. Remembering the price He paid so that we could enter the race, helps us to keep running and not lose heart. 

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