Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, – Hebrews 12:1 (ESV)
Many of us are faced with hardship, sufferings, and maybe even persecutions, and we tend to think we need to muster up more strength to get through it all. The endurance that is spoken of here is not an endurance of independency but one of complete dependence upon God in Christ by the work of the Holy Spirit. To try to do it our way in our strength is Sin. For in the very next verse, the writer tells us to FIX our eyes on Jesus, who is the author and perfecter of our faith. Jesus is the one who has started our faith and Jesus is the one who will see that it is perfected! We are called to Fix, strain, look intently at Jesus!
Therefore through the tough persecutions, hardship, and sufferings we don’t lean or look to the world for understanding but we are to acknowledge God in ALL things and He will direct our paths!
Jesus had this to say to His disciples after he had taught them about how He is the true vine.
“If the world hates you, know that it has hated me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would love you as its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you. Remember the word that I said to you: ‘A servant is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted me, they will also persecute you. If they kept my word, they will also keep yours.”
The Key is in the verses ahead; to abide in Jesus, for apart from Him we can do nothing that will bring God glory!
If we are In Christ we are a New Creation, the Old has gone and the New has Come! 2 Cor 5:17
If we are in Christ – the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world. Gal 6:14
It is so easy to forget these truths that God has written in His Word because the world offer so many quick solutions. Let us not lose heart but let us endure with the strength that God provides. As we do this He will do what He said; let us humble ourselves before God and He will exalt us in due time (1 Peter 5:6). He is faithful to keep His Word, He cannot Lie!