Friday, May 27, 2022

Finishing Well

Friday, May 27, 2022 

Finishing Well by Donnie O'Fallon

Sam, in his last Sunday and his final sermon at North Side, challenged us to Finish our Race Well! You see, to be saved is to begin and be in a new race. The author of Hebrews is exhorting his Christians readers to go on to victory in spite of their struggle and trials. I believe the writer of Hebrews was the Apostle Paul. He says to them in Hebrews 12:1-2 these words: 

“Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set bear us, looking unto Jesus, the founder and perfected of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the same, and is seated at the right of the throne of God.” (ESV)

In Chapter 12  of Hebrews, Paul gives the example and application of the Hero’s Of the Faith in chapter 11. The context is the setting of a relay race. 

*   The Place: A great arena

*   The Preparation: The readers are preparing to run their race.

*   The Effort: The manner of running

*   The Aim: To be victorious for Jesus’ sake

This relay race in the Christian life is a team effort. This team of runners are preparing to run in competition. The continuity of such an effort is this: The first runners are to run as if he/she is the only one who would cross the finish line. The runner in the third heat has a good time because the first runners picked up and came on and did their very best. 

He is saying the runners of the first two heats have not, and will not, receive a reward until all the runners are in and the final finish line is crossed.

The Christian life is so tied to the ones who have gone before, and those who are yet to come, and those who are caught in the middle. We will have the incentive to give our very best in our own day as we run our race. Salvation is the gift that puts us in the race.

1.     Get In the Race - Ephesians 2:8-9. There are three kinds of folks in the world: a) those who make things Happen, b) those who watch things happen, c) those who wonder what happened? Don’t have a hope so salvation, have a know so salvation. get in the race.

2.     Don’t be Slowed Down“…lay aside every weight and sin…” Paul also said, “This one thing I do.” The goal of the Christian life is to be played out in pleasure, business, recreation, and interests in every part of life.

3.     Don’t be Tripped Up “…that besets us…”, besets means to entangle, habits, pleasures, self-indulgences associating.

4.     Don’t Quit Running“…run with endurance.” The Greek word, “agony” means a second effort, a struggle in conflict.

5.     Finally Keep your Eyes on the Goal - “…looking Unto Jesus.” Our glance is to be on the path of life, but our gaze must remain on our Lord, our strength; our refuge our help our hope! 

Jesus says to you and me, “I put you in the race, I’m the goal you run to, I’m the strength with which you run.” Never lose sight of the of the prize!

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