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 finisher 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. Hebrews 12:1-2.

Today your LORD (יהוה) God (אלהים) says:

Keep your eyes on Jesus. Why? He is the Word I sent to heal and deliver you from your destructions. Psalm 107:20; John 1:14. Keep looking at My Word in any situation and My Word will bring you out of your darkness to the light of day, so keep looking until the morning star rises in your hearts. 2 Peter 1:19. The path of the righteous is like the light of dawn which gets brighter and brighter until perfect day. Proverbs 4:18. My Word is a light to your path and a lamp to your feet. Walk in the light of My Word for in the darkness of the world, the flesh and the devil you stumble over obstacles in your path because you do not see them. There is a way that looks right to a man but ends in death, so lean not on your own understanding, keep your eyes on Jesus and lean on Me.

And that leads to today’s Life Lesson in our series on the unfathomable riches I have put in Christ for you: “Jesus, the author and finisher of faith.”

This description of Jesus was written in Greek, so let us look back to that. The word you see translated “author” is the Greek word archégos (ἀρχηγός) which means founder, leader. It is from arxḗ, which means “the first” and ágō, which means “to lead,” so the first in a long procession; a file-leader who pioneers the way for many others to follow. Arxēgós does not strictly mean “author,” but rather a person who is originator or founder of a movement and continues as the leader – i.e. “pioneer leader, founding leader.”

The word you see translated as “finisher,” and sometimes as “perfecter,” is the Greek word “teleiótés (τελειωτής),” which means a consummator, completer, bringing a process to its finish.

Jesus told you a lot about faith. He looked at people’s faith and termed it little faith, much faith, great faith, and no faith. He asked when the Son of Man returns would He find any faith on the earth? Before healing people He often asked if they had faith that they would be healed. And often He told people it was their faith that saved them and made them whole. My part is the power and your part is to mix My promises with your faith. Nothing is too hard for Me. Nothing is impossible for Me. Nothing is too wonderful for Me. And all things are possible when you have faith in that.

But how do you get faith? I give you the answer in the ministry of Jesus—the crowds came to HEAR and be healed. First they heard about Jesus, for the news about Him spread among the people, and then they came to hear Him and to be healed of their sicknesses. Luke 5:15. And sometimes I tell you that the crowds were pressing in to hear, they came to be filled with the good news He was preaching with authority and not like their scribes. “Now it happened that while the crowd was pressing around Him and listening to the word of God, He was standing by the lake of Gennesaret.” Luke 5:1. Miracles, signs, wonders come by faith in My promises, but if these are not happening in your life it is because your faith is not full enough to drive out the things contrary to My Word that are trying to take over your life and steal your victory in every realm of your life.

I tell you how faith comes but many do not do it and just want the result but there is only one way to increase your faith, and it is not by begging Me to do it for you. Faith comes by hearing, and hearing My Word. Romans 10:17. You have to get so full of My Word that doubt is driven out.

Be careful what you hear for that is where your faith or fear will grow and overflow, that is, with what you fill yourself with. The mouth speaks from the heart’s abundance. And you speak what you have faith for and what you say will manifest in your life at some point if you keep saying the same thing whether it be good or evil, whether it be My Will or that of the devil. For the measure with which you measure is measured back to you and more besides. If you are diligent in hearing and speaking My Word, the manifestation of My promises of healing, provision, prosperity, deliverance, protection, direction, renewal, and restoration will manifest in your life at the time you are full, but if you are diligent about listening to and speaking immoral, idle, rebellious, fearful, or depressing words contrary to Mine, those will be manifesting in your life. Like Job, what he feared came on him, and he blamed Me for it. Finally, he put his hand over his mouth, retracted what he said, and started walking in love towards Me and his neighbor and all the good things he longed for came to pass in his life. People were amazed at the transformation that took place but they could have had the same results by changing their words and thoughts. I had to show up and talk with Job but you have a whole book of My Words which he did not have.

The first parable My Son told demonstrates this to you. In it He likened My Word to seed that is sown on the soil of your heart. Those who received the Word and cultivated it with diligence had a return of thirty, sixty, and a hundredfold from that implanted Word that has the power to save you. The more diligence in hearing and doing the greater the harvest. But those who paid no attention to it, that is, gave it no value, had no results in their lives from My promises, and neither did those who received it at first but gave up and gave in when persecutions, trials, storms, contrary circumstances, challenges, anxieties, stress, fears or lusts for fleshy desires and earthy riches choked off the Word. And My Son was very clear about the devil’s primary way of stealing your health, wealth, joy, and peace is by stealing the Word from you the moment you hear it or by choking it off or scorching it out by trials, adversities, and fear, and if those do not work by enticements of the pride of life such as earthly fame and wealth, or by sexual immorality and other sensual temptations, addictions, and uncontrolled emotions. But his primary goal is to steal the Word so you do not get full of it and enforce your victory which I have given you over him in Christ Jesus. When you get full of My Word, you can resist him by faith and he has to flee from you and take the evils he had planned for your life with him. He comes to steal the Word, and then kill and destroy your life.

But My Son, the author and finisher of your faith, came that you would have LIFE and have it abundantly. And He told you that to do this you must remain in Him and His Words remain in you. For if you continue (remain, abide) in My Word, you will truly be My disciples (and the sign that you are a disciple is you bear much fruit), and you will know the truth and the truth will set you free. And what is truth? My Word is truth and My Word sanctifies you. He is the vine and you are the branches, it all begins in attaching to Him by receiving Him by faith as your Lord and it finishes in a life of much fruit, fruit that will endure, produced in you by the life of the vine. In Him, your life will flourish—it will blossom on the vine and produce fruit. You will flourish. And that is abundant life.

Jesus brought you the Word of Life and He is the Word of Life. Keep your eyes on Him, on My Word, and you will run your race without encumbrance. He is the beginning of your race and the finish of your race. He is preparing a place for you and He comes to take you there with Him. And you are building your life now on the foundation of Jesus, My Word, and when the edifice is completed it will be time to be promoted to a much larger scope of existence.

My servant Paul, by inspiration of My Spirit, wrote, “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith; in the future there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day; and not only to me, but also to all who have loved His appearing.” 2 Timothy 7-8. Jesus is the author and finisher of faith, your race, your fight, your reward. Keep your eyes always on the finish line and you will not take a detour but that is where you may end.

Therefore, since you have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding you, lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles you, and run with endurance the race that is set before you, fixing your eyes on Jesus, the author and finisher of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of My throne. Hebrews 12:2. And when you believed in your heart I raised Him from the dead and confessed with your mouth that Jesus is Lord, you were saved, made righteous, and I raised you up with Him and seated you with Him in Heaven. Ephesians 2:6. So keep seeking the things above, where Christ is, seated at My right hand Set your mind on the things above, not on the things that are on earth. For you have died and your life is hidden with Christ in Me. When Christ, who is your life, is revealed, then you also will be revealed with Him in glory. Colossians 3:1-4.

If you read this description of Jesus in context, you see that you are fixing your eyes on Him as the mark of the place your race starts (when you become the righteousness of God in Him) and its finish line (when you have finished the work I gave you to do on earth, that is, the life of good deeds I prepared for you in advance in Christ Jesus your Lord, Ephesians 2:10). And the journey is all about faith if you want to have an abundant life filled with the manifestation of all My magnificent promises. Forget not all My benefits, they are yours by faith. Get full of My Word and you will be full of faith.

“And they went out and preached everywhere, while the Lord worked with them, and confirmed the Word by the attesting miracles that followed.” Mark 16:20. Is that your life? It can be.

I love you. Keep your eyes on Jesus and you will know what life is all about—faith, which is the victory that overcomes the world, and faith works by love.