Examples of Faith in Action

11 Now faith is the realization of what is hoped for, the proof of things not seen. For by this the people of old were approved. By faith we understand the worlds were created by the word of God, in order that what is seen did not come into existence from what is visible.

By faith Abel offered to God a greater sacrifice than Cain, by which he was approved that he was righteous, because[a] God approved him for his gifts, and through it[b] he still speaks, although he[c] is dead. By faith Enoch was taken up, so that he did not experience death, and he was not found, because God took him up. For before his removal, he had been approved as having been pleasing[d] to God. Now without faith it is impossible to please him, for the one who approaches God must believe that he exists and is a rewarder of those who seek him. By faith Noah, having been warned about things not yet seen, out of reverence constructed an ark for the deliverance of his family, by which he pronounced sentence on the world and became an heir of the righteousness that comes by faith.

By faith Abraham, when he[e] was called, obeyed to go out to a place that he was going to receive for an inheritance, and he went out, not knowing where he was going. By faith he lived in the land of promise as a stranger, living in tents with Isaac and Jacob, the fellow heirs of the same promise. 10 For he was expecting the city that has foundations, whose architect and builder is God. 11 By faith also, with Sarah[f],[g] he received the ability to procreate[h] even past the normal age[i], because he regarded the one who had promised to be faithful. 12 And therefore these were fathered from one man, and he being as good as dead, as the stars of heaven in number and like the innumerable sand by the shore of the sea.

13 These all died in faith without receiving the promises, but seeing them from a distance and welcoming them, and admitting that they were strangers and temporary residents on the earth. 14 For those who say such things make clear that they are seeking a homeland. 15 And if they remember[j] that land from which they went out, they would have had opportunity to return. 16 But now they aspire to a better land, that is, a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed of them, to be called their God, for he has prepared for them a city.

17 By faith Abraham, when he was tested, offered Isaac, and the one who received the promises was ready to offer his one and only son, 18 with reference to whom it was said, “In Isaac your descendants will be named,”[k] 19 having reasoned that God was able even to raise him from the dead, from which he received him back also as a symbol. 20 By faith also Isaac blessed Jacob and Esau concerning things that were going to happen. 21 By faith Jacob, as he[l] was dying, blessed each of the sons of Joseph and worshiped, leaning on the top of his staff. 22 By faith Joseph, as he[m] was dying, mentioned about the exodus of the sons of Israel and gave instructions about his bones.

23 By faith Moses, when he[n] was born, was hidden for three months by his parents, because they saw the child was handsome, and they were not afraid of the edict of the king. 24 By faith Moses, when he[o] was grown up, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter, 25 choosing instead to be mistreated with the people of God rather than to experience the transitory enjoyment of sin, 26 considering reproach endured for the sake of Christ[p] greater wealth than the treasures of Egypt, for he was looking to the reward. 27 By faith he left Egypt, not fearing the anger of the king, for he persevered as if he[q] saw the invisible one. 28 By faith he kept the Passover and the sprinkling of blood, in order that the one who destroyed the firstborn would not touch them. 29 By faith they crossed the Red Sea as if on dry land; the Egyptians, when they made the attempt[r], were drowned. 30 By faith the walls of Jericho fell down after they[s] had been marched around for seven days. 31 By faith Rahab the prostitute did not perish with those who were disobedient, because she[t] welcomed the spies in peace.

32 And what more shall I say? For time would fail me to tell about Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, David, and Samuel and the prophets, 33 who through faith conquered kingdoms, accomplished justice, obtained what was promised, shut the mouths of lions, 34 extinguished the effectiveness of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, were made strong from weakness, became mighty in battle, put to flight enemy battle lines. 35 Women received back their dead by resurrection. But others were tortured, not accepting release, in order that they might gain a better resurrection. 36 And others experienced mocking and flogging[u], and in addition bonds and imprisonment. 37 They were stoned, they were sawed in two, they died by murder with a sword, they wandered about in sheepskins, in goatskins, impoverished, afflicted, mistreated, 38 of whom the world was not worthy, wandering about on deserts and mountains and in caves and in holes in the ground. 39 And although they[v] all were approved[w] through their faith, they did not receive what was promised, 40 because[x] God had provided something better for us, so that they would not be made perfect without us.


  1. Hebrews 11:4 Here “when” is supplied as a component of the temporal participle (“was”)
  2. Hebrews 11:4 I.e., his faith
  3. Hebrews 11:4 Here “although” is supplied as a component of the participle (“is dead”) which is understood as concessive
  4. Hebrews 11:5 Literally “to be pleasing”
  5. Hebrews 11:8 Here “when” is supplied as a component of the temporal participle (“was called”)
  6. Hebrews 11:11 Literally “with her, Sarah”
  7. Hebrews 11:11 Some manuscripts have “even though Sarah herself was barren”
  8. Hebrews 11:11 Literally “power to deposit seed”
  9. Hebrews 11:11 Literally “beyond the time of maturity”
  10. Hebrews 11:15 Some manuscripts have “they had been remembering”
  11. Hebrews 11:18 A quotation from Gen 21:12
  12. Hebrews 11:21 Here “as” is supplied as a component of the temporal participle (“was dying”)
  13. Hebrews 11:22 Here “as” is supplied as a component of the temporal participle (“was dying”)
  14. Hebrews 11:23 Here “when” is supplied as a component of the temporal participle (“afraid of”)
  15. Hebrews 11:24 Here “when” is supplied as a component of the temporal participle (“was”)
  16. Hebrews 11:26 Literally “the reproach of Christ”
  17. Hebrews 11:27 Here “if” is supplied as a component of the participle (“saw”) which is understood as conditional
  18. Hebrews 11:29 Literally “of which attempt making”
  19. Hebrews 11:30 Here “after” is supplied as a component of the temporal participle (“had been marched around”)
  20. Hebrews 11:31 Here “because” is supplied as a component of the participle (“welcomed”) which is understood as causal
  21. Hebrews 11:36 Literally “received experience of mocking and flogging”
  22. Hebrews 11:39 Here “although” is supplied as a component of the participle (“were approved”) which is understood as concessive
  23. Hebrews 11:39 Some manuscripts have “And all these, although they were approved”
  24. Hebrews 11:40 Here “because” is supplied as a component of the causal genitive absolute participle (“had provided”)