2Fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. 3For consider Him who has endured such hostility by sinners against Himself, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart. (Heb. 12:2-3 NASB)
We are compelled to look to Jesus as an example and an inspirer. The previous verses extending from chapter 11 and ending in chapter 12 verse 1 point to the fact that we have many witnesses in scripture that provide a great foundation for hope in faith, and that we should be encouraged to lay aside every weight and every sin that ensnares us and hinders us from running this Christian race. Yet, we find here that we are told to even look further and deeper into this spectrum of faith. We are told to look to Jesus who is the author and finisher of our faith. “Looking here means to affix one’s eyes trustingly. We are to look past the circumstances and see Christ. Christ and the emblem of our covenant with God.
The “finisher” of our faith means that Christ has the greatest testimony of the final result of pure faith. Beyond those mentioned in the previous chapter Christ fulfilled his mission on earth without fault. Instead of looking at the agony of the cross, he looked to joy of the Crown. He set the example of trust and faith in the Father. We are told to consider Christ when there are hardships in our lives that seem unbearable. We are to place our struggles juxtaposed to the sufferings of Christ and understand that if God brought Him through the greatest example of suffering ever exhibited, He will without fail deliver us and empower us to fulfill our destinies.
According to verse 4, we have to be willing to resist the desire to give up and turn back to the point of bloodshed (which is a metaphor for death). Christ has provided the perfect example of completing an earthly mission. If we look to him, we can gain courage and inspiration to stay the course. We will be able to say with Paul, I have fought the good fight, I have finished the course, I have kept the faith; (2 Tim. 4:7 NASB)