Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Daily Light - January 4, 2011

Daily Light from the Lighthouse
40 Days of Faith

"By faith Abel offered to God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain,
through which he obtained witness that he was righteous,
God testifying of his gifts; and through it he being dead still speaks."
Hebrews 11:4

Do you know someone that just can't be quiet? They have what some call the gift of gab, although at times we are not sure how much of a gift it really is. No matter what the topic of conversation is they are either an expert on it or have numerous stories to tell concerning the subject. You have to wonder if they spend most of the night talking in their sleep as well. Often, it is not so much that we mind the amount of talking as it is we just wish that what they had to say was worth listening to.
Abel had the distinction of being the second son of Adam and Eve. We are given very little detail about his life, but we are sure that it was an interesting one. For years he and his brother Cain had been brought up with the knowledge that things weren't the way they were originally meant to be. Surely the stories of the Garden had been repeated to them time and again. They listened as their parents spoke about all that there was to eat of in the Garden, the peace with the animals that lived there with them, and most importantly the walks with God in the coolness of the day. With sadness Adam and Eve also rehearsed the fall and their sin. Perhaps this is where they told of the first sacrifice so that their nakedness might be covered. Abel looked down at his own clothes and knew the cost, then he gazed over at the sheep that he was called to protect and serve and knew what must be done.
By faith Abel gave to God his best. He did not give what seemed pleasing in his sight but what he knew would be pleasing in God's sight. This sacrifice was not about him; it was about his God. By faith we do not give to God what makes us happy, but instead we are to give what glorifies our heavenly Father. Abel's sacrifice not only cost him a lamb from his flock, but it also cost him his life. His own brother despised him for being righteous. There will always be those who hate God's people and their righteousness, because they hate God. We must not get discouraged in this but realize that we are called to live by faith for God's pleasure not ours. A life of faith is a never ending testimony for the Lord.
Even today when we hear, think, or speak of Abel we can still hear his voice. For Cain the voice was a haunting one, because it reminded him of his unrighteousness. For those that are living by faith the voice of Abel is one of encouragement. Living by faith may cost us everything here on this earth, but it is rewarded by the Almighty and no one can take that away. Live by faith so that your voice will be heard long after you leave this world. Righteousness proclaimed is a message that can never be silenced.
May you speak loudly by faith today!

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