The Race Isn’t Over Yet!

Hebrews 11:39-12:3

39 And these all, having obtained a good report through faith, received not the promise: 40 God having provided some better thing for us, that they without us should not be made perfect.12 Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God. For consider him that endured such contradiction of sinners against himself, lest ye be wearied and faint in your minds.

As the writer of Hebrews looks back on his “Hall of Faith” something stands out to him. Though they were faithful to the end, none of them lived long enough to see the promise of God fulfilled. But they were still able to press forward and endure all for the promise that they had been given in God. So from Adam forward; all of history, all the promises, all those who followed Christ in faith, marched on toward Calvary. There the promise would be realized, redemption would be won and their faith would be completed.
Then in chapter 12 he moves us from the museum to the arena. All of those who we have been reading about over the last couple of weeks are there in the stands motivating us on as we follow Christ. It is almost like the relay race where runner after runner has finished their lap and passed the baton. Now the finish line is in sight and the baton has been passed to us. Those who have run before us are there cheering us on. Our eyes are set on the finish line – Christ. 
Paul said it this way,
13 Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, 14 I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus. (Phil 3:13-14)
Can you see the beads of sweat as they roll down his forehead? The straining muscles as Paul calls on every last bit of strength he possesses? His eyes were fixed on that goal – on Christ! And at the end of his life as he prepares to cross that finish line he tells his trusted friend Timothy, “I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith.” (2 Tim 4:7) Just like the Old Testament saints who kept there eyes on the horizon looking toward Calvary, Paul kept his eyes on Jesus as he ran his lap, with the faithful cheering him on as he crossed the finish line and received his reward. Now it is our turn – we have the baton – the goal is before us and all the saints who have gone before us stands as examples for us to just keep running
Today as we ReFocus our hearts and minds on Christ let us run the race that God has set before us. Just as we have looked at and considered the awesome things that God has done through the lives of those who have gone before us, I like to imagine that these giants of faith are in the stands, on the edge of their seats as we run our lap waiting to see God do the amazing in our lives!