Hebrews 12: 1-2 Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.
Fix our eyes
There is a song I absolutely love by Dave Horn called Fix our Eyes. I think one of the reasons this song is so powerful is its strong use of actual scripture. Nothing touches the heart like the word of the Lord. Dave sets a beautiful verse from Hebrews 12 to music. Dave led our church service this week at our church, and it’s always such a blessing when he and his wife Sabra come to visit. They have such a love for the Lord and an ability with fun and joking to make scripture come alive and connect (at least for me) in a whole new way. Whenever I read the scripture above – especially Hebrews 12:2, I think of Dave’s song. The beauty is, I have that verse memorized now because of his song. I suggest you listen to it, maybe even download it.
I love the idea of fixing our eyes on Jesus. It is only when we get distracted by the world and our own sinful desires that we get ourselves into true trouble. When we start to put our focus on things that are temporary and not eternal, we can lose site of what is important.
Author of my faith
Did God write my faith? That’s not the kind of authorship scripture is talking about here. One of the definitions of Author is “An originator or creator of something, esp. a plan or idea”. He is the one who came up with the idea to give me faith. To allow me to know Him and trust in Him. He had a plan for me – that I would have faith in Him, and come to know Him as my Lord and Savior.
Perfecter of my faith
The word Perfect (the root word of perfecter) is defined in many ways, and many of the definitions listed enlighten what this idea of Jesus being the perfecter of my faith might mean.
per·fect (pûrfkt) adj.
1. Lacking nothing essential to the whole; complete of its nature or kind.
2. Being without defect or blemish: a perfect specimen.
3. Thoroughly skilled or talented in a certain field or area; proficient.
4. Completely suited for a particular purpose or situation: She was the perfect actress for the part.
- Completely corresponding to a description, standard, or type: a perfect circle; a perfect gentleman.
- Accurately reproducing an original: a perfect copy of the painting.
6. Complete; thorough; utter: a perfect fool.
7. Pure; undiluted; unmixed: perfect red.
8. Excellent and delightful in all respects: a perfect day.
Lacking nothing essential to the whole; complete of its nature or kind.
When Christ Jesus is the perfecter of my faith, He makes my faith complete, not withholding anything I would need.
Being without defect or blemish: a perfect specimen.
My faith, if it were my own creation would be tainted by my very sinful nature. It would not be trustworthy, but because Jesus is the author of it, it can be a perfect specimen (if I don’t get in the way).
Thoroughly skilled or talented in a certain field or area; proficient.
Jesus skillfully creates our faith, knowing the troubles and tribulations that will face us throughout our lives here on earth, he makes sure our faith is complete.
Completely suited for a particular purpose or situation
Jesus makes our faith perfect for the situations we will face. Whether it is that we don’t get into the college we want or that we have had to grow up with abusive parents or family members. No matter what the situation we find ourselves in, Jesus has provided us with a faith He is responsible for making perfect. He created it, He’ll make it work in our lives, no matter what the situation.
Accurately reproducing an original
As Christ works this perfecting in our faith, we can find ourselves becoming a more true reproduction of the one who created us. We were created in His image, and only through the perfecting of our faith through Jesus Christ do we have the opportunity to find out what that really means. If not fully realized here on earth, then in heaven when we meet Him face to face and our faith reaches its ultimate perfection.
Complete; thorough; utter
Only Jesus can make our faith complete. If we try to be the author of our faith, we’re going to find our faith is short-lived. If we try to will ourselves to believe, it just won’t work. Faith is only made complete, fully realized through Christ Jesus.
Pure; undiluted; unmixed
Our faith, if we created it or tried to make it perfect would be completely clouded by our sin. Everything we would try to make better would be watered down by self-seeking behaviors, selfishness, pride and more. It is only through Christ who is perfect and the perfecter can we have a faith that is pure, not messed up with our sins.
Excellent and delightful in all respects
Have you ever known people who feel like their faith is a burden, keeping them from having fun and enjoying all this world has to offer? Jesus’ promises are not of this world, and they’re eternal. Only Jesus can create faith in us that is excellent and delightful in all respects. He is the one who transforms what feels like restrictions into blessings and challenges into growth.
Come Let us fix our eyes on Jesus
Like a horse with blinders on I want to keep my eyes on Jesus so that I might know Him more fully and not get distracted with all the things of this world the devil tries to use to get me off course. With my eyes fixed on Jesus, I will be able to run with endurance the path Christ has laid out for me.
Who for the joy set before Him
One of the things that I think Dave Horn does so well is opening up scripture so that I see more of what is there. When he performs this song, he makes sure to point out that the “joy” set before Jesus is us – You and me. We are the Joy set before him. The reason He endured the cross despising its shame. You’re the reason He went on the cross. Not to point out your sin, but to save you from your sin that would otherwise block you from the beauty of the Son of God, and the relationship God wants to have with you.
What do you have your eyes fixed on? What are you looking at?