Coping with Uncertainty
Hebrews 11:8 By faith Abraham, when he was called to go out into a place which he should after receive for an inheritance, obeyed; and he went out, not knowing whither he went.
I. The Uncertain Conclusion – “…not knowing whither he went…”
There are a number of Bible illustrations of people that faced times of uncertainty that we could look at tonight.
1. Moses approached Pharaoh – having no idea what his reaction would be
2. Esther approached the king – not knowing what he would do. Her “If I perish, I perish” statement has been repeated down through the centuries.
3. The three Hebrew children facing the fire in Daniel 3:
- 16 Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, answered and said to the king, O Nebuchadnezzar, we are not careful to answer thee in this matter.
- 17 If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and he will deliver us out of thine hand, O king.
- 18 But if not, be it known unto thee, O king, that we will not serve thy gods, nor worship the golden image which thou hast set up.
I felt led to this particular passage because uncertainty for Abraham wasn’t just a one-time event.
For an extended time, he faced uncertainty every day of his life.
Every day of his life, Abraham woke up with nothing but uncertainty before him.
His wife had no certainty.
They had absolutely no idea where they were going.
You can’t get much more of an uncertainty than to be traveling with no known destination.
Every day, they packed up and started toward an unknown location.
Every day, they went to bed with no closure; no assurance of accomplishment; no answers.
APPLICATION: Since March, each of us have lived in a world of incredible uncertainties.
We are experiencing one of the most uncertain election outcomes in our nation’s history.
We live each day with the realization that we are one press conference away from school closures, church restrictions, etc.
Our jobs, our career, our livelihoods are all on a day-by-day status.
We live with the nagging thought that we are one cough; one fever from being diagnosed with Covid.
The stress; the toll it takes on one’s mind and body is incredible.
II. The Unmistakable Calling – “…when he was called to go out…”
He didn’t know the conclusion, but he did know the calling.
Abraham didn’t have any idea where he was being sent, but he knew Who was calling him.
He didn’t know the ending, but he had no questions about the beginning.
The outcome may be uncertain, but the directions and expectations of God are not.
What did God call you to do?
That hasn’t changed.
Our knowledge of the present will of God should counteract our ignorance of the future workings of God.
III. The Unhesitant Compliance – “…obeyed, he went out…”
“Never let the uncertainty of tomorrow determine your obedience today.”
Every day, though uncertainty loomed ahead of him like an unpainted canvas, he went out.
Though his future and the future of his family was a complete mystery, he went out.
Abraham obeyed, and went out – not knowing wither he went.
Never before in our generation have Christians had the opportunity to learn what it means to “walk with God.”
Never before have we had more suitable circumstances to “walk by faith.”
Conclusion: Uncertainty is actually the essence of life as a Christian.
In all honesty, there is very little certainty in life.
- Proverbs 27:1 Boast not thyself of to morrow; for thou knowest not what a day may bring forth.
We have simply succeeded in convincing ourselves that there is certainty, when there isn’t.