Hebrews 11:1 Meaning of Now Faith Is Confidence in What We Hope For

Hebrews 11:1
“Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.”

Explanation and Commentary of Hebrews 11:1

The Christian is saved by grace alone, through faith alone. The disciples asked Jesus, “What must we do to do the works God requires” (Jn 6:28)? “Jesus answered, ‘The work of God is this: to believe in the one he has sent’” (Jn 6:29). This is faith. But how do you define faith? The author of Hebrews does just that and then shows examples of the Old Testament heroes of faith (Heb 11), showing how their faith led to action, and their action was reckoned as faith, and as righteousness.

So faith is confidence, hope, and assurance of what cannot be seen. We know there is a God who created us, saved us by Christ’s work on the cross, and is coming again. Our confidence in this is what moves us to our lifestyle and our actions.

James says that faith without works is dead and is no faith at all (Ja 2:14-26). Many get confused by this, and so begin to work to earn salvation. But it’s a matter of the order of things. Belief that leads to works because of the “confidence in what we hope for,” is salvation.

Breaking Down the Key Parts of Hebrews 11:1

#1 “Now…”
The author has been calling his readers to persevere in and because of their faith, even though they are being persecuted. He understands they may be asking the question now, “what is faith?”

#2 “…faith is confidence in what we hope for…”
We have hope because we cannot see the thing in which we trust, we only believe. But our hope builds true confidence in us because it is a very great and supernatural hope. We’ve been given “eyes to see” (Mt 13:16) things that the natural cannot see.

#3 “…and assurance about what we do not see.”
Assurance comes from the Holy Spirit. Paul speaks of the assurance of sonship in Christ by which we cry, “Abba, Father” (Ro 8:15).

Bible Study on Hebrews 11:1

Expert Overview of Hebrews

Biblical Translations of Hebrews 11:1

NIV
Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.

NLT
Faith shows the reality of what we hope for; it is the evidence of things we cannot see.

ESV
Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.

KJV
Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.

NKJV
Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.

Hebrews 11:1 Meaning and Commentary

Author Bio
Natalie Regoli is a child of God, devoted wife, and mother of two boys. She has a Masters Degree in Law from The University of Texas. Natalie has been published in several national journals and has been practicing law for 17 years. If you would like to reach out to contact Natalie, then go here to send her a message.