40.Day.Week4

JULY 25

ALL SAINTS DAY

HEBREWS 11:39-40 | And all these, though commended through their faith, did not receive what was promised, 40 since God had provided something better for us, that apart from us they should not be made perfect.

No one is perfect. Not even Enoch, who strolled into heaven on his own two feet. Nor the mangled martyrs who entered Eternity the hard way (HEBREWS 11:5, 35). Only Jesus, through suffering and obedience, has achieved the ultimate human perfection that God has promised all his saints (2:10).

All the heroes of faith in Hebrews 11 died without obtaining the promise. This was not through any lack of faith on their part. It was according to God’s plan — that apart from us they should not be made perfect (:39-40).

None of us is perfect without all of us. After enduring and achieving so much on their watch, the saints of old are still waiting for their ultimate reward. To be crowned with glory and honour alongside Jesus and with all of us. They wait with eager longing — for us.

And here we grumble over train delays and petty disruptions. Here we strive to keep one family together through Covid-19. And pastors are holding their breath to see how many of their sheep will come back when churches can gather again.

Likewise, the readers of Hebrews struggle to remain faithful under fire. The author reminds them that they are not alone. And neither are we. The Book of Hebrews insists on the indivisible unity of all God’s people across every generation. We are all in this together.

Though separated in time and space, we are all on the same team. We all finish the race at different times. But we all win in the long run — provided we don’t cheat or drop out along the way.

Our brothers and sisters who have gone before us remain uncrowned. Abel, Enoch, Abraham, Sarah, Rahab, Peter, Paul, Francis of Assisi, Martin Luther, C.S. Lewis, Mother Teresa, John Stott, Billy Graham, Reinhard Bonnke, Ravi Zacharias, J.I. Packer, Chiu Ban Yit, Benjamin Chew, and all the others. They are waiting for us. Like fans in a packed stadium, they cheer us on, eager for us to finish, so that we can all be crowned together. As one.

And we too must wait for all who come after us. No one is complete without all of us. To be glorified all together, is a great delight (JOHN CHRYSOSTOM). O how I want to be in that number! When the saints go marching in.

ALL SAINTS DAY

HEBREWS 11:39-40 | And all these, though commended through their faith, did not receive what was promised, 40 since God had provided something better for us, that apart from us they should not be made perfect.

No one is perfect. Not even Enoch, who strolled into heaven on his own two feet. Nor the mangled martyrs who entered Eternity the hard way (HEBREWS 11:5, 35). Only Jesus, through suffering and obedience, has achieved the ultimate human perfection that God has promised all his saints (2:10).

All the heroes of faith in Hebrews 11 died without obtaining the promise. This was not through any lack of faith on their part. It was according to God’s plan — that apart from us they should not be made perfect (:39-40).

None of us is perfect without all of us. After enduring and achieving so much on

 

JULY 25

their watch, the saints of old are still waiting for their ultimate reward. To be crowned with glory and honour alongside Jesus and with all of us. They wait with eager longing — for us.

And here we grumble over train delays and petty disruptions. Here we strive to keep one family together through Covid-19. And pastors are holding their breath to see how many of their sheep will come back when churches can gather again.

Likewise, the readers of Hebrews struggle to remain faithful under fire. The author reminds them that they are not alone. And neither are we. The Book of Hebrews insists on the indivisible unity of all God’s people across every generation. We are all in this together.

Though separated in time and space, we are all on the same team. We all finish the race at different times. But we all win in the long run — provided we don’t cheat or drop out along the way.

Our brothers and sisters who have gone before us remain uncrowned. Abel, Enoch, Abraham, Sarah, Rahab, Peter, Paul, Francis of Assisi, Martin Luther, C.S. Lewis, Mother Teresa, John Stott, Billy Graham, Reinhard Bonnke, Ravi Zacharias, J.I. Packer, Chiu Ban Yit, Benjamin Chew, and all the others. They are waiting for us. Like fans in a packed stadium, they cheer us on, eager for us to finish, so that we can all be crowned together. As one.

And we too must wait for all who come after us. No one is complete without all of us. To be glorified all together, is a great delight (JOHN CHRYSOSTOM). O how I want to be in that number! When the saints go marching in.

Prayer Track

■ Today, let us celebrate the indivisible unity of all the generations that have gone before us in the journey of faith. Dear Lutherans, Martin is waiting for you. Dear Presbyterians, Calvin is waiting for you. Dear Anglicans, Cranmer is waiting for you. Dear Methodists, the Wesleys are waiting for you, singing hymns to pass the time. Dear Pentecostals, Seymour is waiting for you. Dear Charismatics, Bennett is waiting for you. Dear All, may we value our timeless Oneness in Christ. May we treasure our rich spiritual heritage. May we have the humility and maturity to learn from and build on the lasting legacy of our fathers and mothers in the faith. Pray.

■ It’s easy to identify with departed generations. The dead don’t quarrel. The challenge is to keep faith between living generations, the ones older and the ones younger than our own. Watch and pray. The Singapore Church is in a generational transition. The ugly issue of ageism has surfaced. It’s real and raw. It cuts both ways. On the one hand, the hold-on generation is reluctant to make room for the young. Wise up: A poor youngster with some wisdom is better off than an old but foolish king who doesn’t know which end is up (ECCLESIASTES 4:13 THE MESSAGE). On the other hand, the hurry-up generation is prematurely grabbing the baton. Wake up: Immaturity is given a place of prominence, while maturity is made to take a backseat. I’ve seen unproven upstarts riding in style, while experienced veterans are put out to pasture (ECCLESIASTES 10:6-7 THE MESSAGE). Let us repent of our carnality that breeds competition, contempt, and conflict. May we instead complement one another with our gifts. May we collaborate with great synergy across the generations. Confess: Though we all finish the race at different times, we are all on the same team. None of us is perfect without all of us. For Christ’s sake, we must get our act together.

■ None of us is complete without all of us. Envision that glorious Day when all the saints are crowned together as one. Meanwhile, make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace (EPHESIANS 4:3). Declare with joy: There is one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God, one Father (EPHESIANS 4:5-6). There is one Vine, many branches (JOHN 15:5). One Church, many congregations. One Body, many members (1 CORINTHIANS 12:12). One mind, one heart (ACTS 4:32). One purpose (ACTS 1:8, PHILIPPIANS 2:2). Align. Agree. Pray.

■ Everyday, celebrate our unity in diversity. Speak blessings of greater oneness, greater anointing, greater faith exploits from generation to generation: Anglican. Assembly of God. Baptist. Bible-Presbyterian. Brethren. Christian Nationals’ Evangelism Commission. Church of Singapore. Evangelical Free. Foursquare. Independent Charismatic. Independent Conservative. Lutheran. Methodist. Orthodox. Presbyterian. Reformed. Roman Catholic. The Salvation Army.

Prayer Track

■ Today, let us celebrate the indivisible unity of all the generations that have gone before us in the journey of faith. Dear Lutherans, Martin is waiting for you. Dear Presbyterians, Calvin is waiting for you. Dear Anglicans, Cranmer is waiting for you. Dear Methodists, the Wesleys are waiting for you, singing hymns to pass the time. Dear Pentecostals, Seymour is waiting for you. Dear Charismatics, Bennett is waiting for you. Dear All, may we value our timeless Oneness in Christ. May we treasure our rich spiritual heritage. May we have the humility and maturity to learn from and build on the lasting legacy of our fathers and mothers in the faith. Pray.

■ It’s easy to identify with departed generations. The dead don’t quarrel. The challenge is to keep faith between living generations, the ones older and the ones younger than our own. Watch and pray. The Singapore Church is in a generational transition. The ugly issue of ageism has surfaced. It’s real and raw. It cuts both

ways. On the one hand, the hold-on generation is reluctant to make room for the young. Wise up: A poor youngster with some wisdom is better off than an old but foolish king who doesn’t know which end is up (ECCLESIASTES 4:13 THE MESSAGE). On the other hand, the hurry-up generation is prematurely grabbing the baton. Wake up: Immaturity is given a place of prominence, while maturity is made to take a backseat. I’ve seen unproven upstarts riding in style, while experienced veterans are put out to pasture (ECCLESIASTES 10:6-7 THE MESSAGE). Let us repent of our carnality that breeds competition, contempt, and conflict. May we instead complement one another with our gifts. May we collaborate with great synergy across the generations. Confess: Though we all finish the race at different times, we are all on the same team. None of us is perfect without all of us. For Christ’s sake, we must get our act together.

■ None of us is complete without all of us. Envision that glorious Day when all the

saints are crowned together as one. Meanwhile, make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace (EPHESIANS 4:3). Declare with joy: There is one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God, one Father (EPHESIANS 4:5-6). There is one Vine, many branches (JOHN 15:5). One Church, many congregations. One Body, many members (1 CORINTHIANS 12:12). One mind, one heart (ACTS 4:32). One purpose (ACTS 1:8, PHILIPPIANS 2:2). Align. Agree. Pray.

■ Everyday, celebrate our unity in diversity. Speak blessings of greater oneness, greater anointing, greater faith exploits from generation to generation: Anglican. Assembly of God. Baptist. Bible-Presbyterian. Brethren. Christian Nationals’ Evangelism Commission. Church of Singapore. Evangelical Free. Foursquare. Independent Charismatic. Independent Conservative. Lutheran. Methodist. Orthodox. Presbyterian. Reformed. Roman Catholic. The Salvation Army.