- Hebrews 11:36-40
- Heb 11:36 (KJB)
- And others had trial of cruel mockings and scourgings, yea,
moreover of bonds and imprisonment:
- Many other witnesses for Christ had faced the mocking tongues of their
detractors. Even in our modern day, Christians are mocked for their belief
in Christ and this happens in both open and subtle ways. Then many had faced
scourging which was just about a death sentence because the scourge was a
whip with pieces of bone or metal in the leather designed to inflict greater
pain with every lash. The bits of bone or metal would go deep into the flesh
and rip it when it was pulled out for another lash. Christians were placed
into prison such as the Apostle Paul and Peter were both placed in prison.
In many countries, western included, Christians are being sentenced to
prison for bringing the true gospel. In the Old Testament Joseph was placed
in bonds. (Gen 39:20 KJV) And Joseph's
master took him, and put him into the prison, a place where the king's
prisoners were bound: and he was there in the prison.
Joseph’s crime was that he was faithful to God and that
is all that it takes in this sin cursed world to be persecuted.
- Heb 11:37 (KJB)
- They were stoned, they were sawn asunder, were tempted, were
slain with the sword: they wandered about in sheepskins and goatskins; being
destitute, afflicted, tormented;
- Tempted - Enticed to sin
- Destitute - To be last (of place, dignity, or condition), to lack, or to
- Afflicted - Oppressed
- Tormented - Being treated evilly
- The apostle Paul was stoned at Lystra and left for dead.
(Acts 14:19 KJV) And there came thither
certain Jews from Antioch and Iconium, who persuaded the people, and,
having stoned Paul, drew him out of the city, supposing he had been
dead. There is a traditional belief that King
Manasseh had Isaiah placed in a tree log and sawn in two. Whether it was
Isaiah or another, the fact that this mode of death was real because it is
recorded here in Scripture. One who was tempted to sin was the Lord Jesus
Christ Himself as Satan tempted Him in the wilderness. This is the boldness
of sin that it even thinks that it could tempt God. Doeg the Edomite had
killed 85 priests on the orders of King Saul.
(1 Sam 22:18 KJV) And the king said to Doeg,
Turn thou, and fall upon the priests. And Doeg the Edomite turned, and he
fell upon the priests, and slew on that day fourscore and five persons that
did wear a linen ephod. Elijah wore a girdle of
leather and John the Baptist wore camel’s hair and a leather girdle. Even
the Lord commented that those who wear soft clothing are in King’s palaces.
(Mat 11:8 KJV) But what went ye out for to see? A man clothed in soft
raiment? behold, they that wear soft clothing are in kings' houses.
The Apostle Paul knew what it was to be destitute as he
had many necessities in his ministry. (2
Cor 6:4 KJV) But in all things approving ourselves as the ministers
of God, in much patience, in afflictions, in necessities, in distresses,
Many were oppressed to the point that they even despaired
of life. Elijah was one who suffered from this. (1 Ki 19:4 KJV) But
he himself went a day's journey into the wilderness, and came and sat down
under a juniper tree: and he requested for himself that he might die; and
said, It is enough; now, O LORD, take away my life; for I am not
better than my fathers. The Christians were treated very
evilly as they were tormented by their foes.
(1 Cor 4:13 KJV) Being defamed, we entreat: we
are made as the filth of the world, and are the offscouring of all
things unto this day. Paul had stated that
Christians were the offscouring of all things. “Offscouring” was the filth
or scum scrapings which came out of a bowl when it was cleaned. This is how
the world viewed Christians then and it is how they are viewed now and that
is why we are tormented by the unbelievers since the creation.
- Heb 11:38 (KJB)
- (Of whom the world was not worthy:) they wandered in deserts, and in
mountains, and in dens and caves of the earth.
- The inspired writer injects a statement that this present sin cursed
world was not worthy of these Saints. Those who were the ones who did the
persecuting, those with power and fleeting prestige, could never equal the
strength of these believers. We must always realize one principle and that
is, “Christianity is not for Cowards.” These who wandered the earth as
strangers and pilgrims realize that there is something far better and
permanent waiting for them. This evil world could not allow holy people to
dwell in it. (John 15:19 KJV) If ye were
of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the
world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth
you. Even the Lord had stated that if Christians
were of the world, the world would love us but since we are no longer of
this world and seek the heavenly city, the world persecutes us.
- Heb 11:39 (KJB)
- And these all, having obtained a good report through faith,
received not the promise:
- Having obtained a good report - Having borne witness to or testified
- Just as the early patriarchs had died in faith without receiving the
promise, those in Israel such as David and Elisha had died in faith without
receiving the promise. The land of Canaan which they sought for would become
a reality on the last day when the Lord Jesus Christ would return and bring
all His children home to Heaven which is the promised land for every true
believer done through the ages. The promise is not a strip of land in the
Middle East because that is only fleeting but the promise has eternal
foundations and only Heaven is eternal.
(Ezek 37:14 KJV) And shall put my spirit in you, and ye shall live, and I
shall place you in your own land: then shall ye know that I the LORD have
spoken it, and performed it, saith the LORD.
The term “own land” does not refer to a physical land
because even the spiritually dead live in a physical land. The promise is
that God will place the Holy Spirit within us and that means we will be
spiritually alive and next He places us in our own land. If this was talking
about Israel, then every born again Christian must move to Israel but the
reality is that Christians are found all over the world, which means no
earthly country is in view. The “own land” of all the Christians worldwide
and throughout history is the heavenly Canaan, which is the eternal dwelling
place of all true believers.
- Heb 11:40 (KJB)
- God having provided some better thing for us, that they without us
should not be made perfect.
- (Eph 1:10 KJV) That in the dispensation of
the fulness of times he might gather together in one all things in Christ,
both which are in heaven, and which are on earth; even in him:
The promised Messiah, the Lord Jesus Christ was
the Savior of all the Old Testament Saints and is the Savior of all the New
Testament Saints. God provided something better then the Mosaic law and that
is salvation by grace in Christ. (Eph
2:14 KJV) For he is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down
the middle wall of partition between
us; The body of Christ is no longer divided
between Old and New Testament but it is one continuous body being built
through the added souls unto salvation. It is one cohesive body and not two.
The Old Testament Saints were perfect because they were saved as we are
today but the entire body of Christ is going to be perfected when it is
complete. Neither the Old Testament Saints nor the New Testament Saints
represent the fullness and maturity of the body but both together represent
the fullness of the body of Christ.