Of Whom the World Was Not Worthy

At the end of Hebrews 11 there is a short section in this honor roll of faith dedicated to people who don’t have a long story attached to their names. The honor roll begins with people we know well from Bible stories in the Old Testament who had great victories through faith. But then the list goes on to ... others. Beginning in the middle of verse 35 with the words “and others...” is a nameless list of sufferers. These “others” had lives of suffering, not victory in the sense we like to think of as victory. They were killed, mocked, scourged, tortured, wandered in all kinds of difficult places, were destitute, afflicted, tormented. But in verse 38 we have a very beautiful truth that conveys God’s thoughts about these sufferers whom other people saw as “inferior” (part of the meaning of the word “destitute”). It says “Of whom the world was not worthy.”
Many of us, if not all of us, go through times in our lives when we fit into this class of “others”. Other people seem to have what may appear to us a “normal” life. But for a time, or perhaps for most of our lives, we are entrusted with a difficult trial that may make us feel inferior to or different from, others. In those circumstances it can seem to us that if we had enough faith, or if we were a better Christian, we might be able to overcome or escape this trial. But it isn’t happening. Take comfort in God’s words about these “others.” He says “of whom the world was not worthy” about those who endure difficult trials without getting the victory here on earth. He doesn’t see as inferior the one who endures a tremendous difficulty without getting escape.
These faithful sufferers did not accept deliverance so that they could have a better resurrection. The dead in Christ shall rise! There is coming a day when we will see clearly that these very difficulties are the things He used to give us a “far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory” (2 Cor. 4:1717For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory; (2 Corinthians 4:17)). That is never said of our joys! Our Father would only allow sorrow to the child He loves if there were a good reason for it. A far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory in the future is part of His good reason. For now, it also conforms us to the image of His Son as we accept the sorrows of life as His good, acceptable and perfect will for us, even when we don’t seem to be getting the victory. If we go on in faith in His goodness, that is all the victory He requires. Faith while we are in the trial glorifies Him!