Q. I am having a hard time understanding what Hebrew 11:39-40 implies. In the prior verses we’re told of some of the great men of God who did many wondrous things thru faith. Then verse 39 says they gained a good report thru faith but receive not the promise. The promise of salvation thru our faith in our Lord? Then would you explain the last part of verse 40, that they without us should not be made perfect.
A. Hebrews 11:39-40 reads,
These were all commended for their faith, yet none of them received what had been promised. God had planned something better for us so that only together with us would they be made perfect.
The better thing God had planned for us is the Church. This is something they are not part of, even though it was through them that the promise was first disclosed. Ephesians 2:7 says that in the ages yet to come the Church will stand alone as the example of the incomparable riches of his grace.
Their perfection awaits ours because the resurrection of Old Testament saints will not happen until the Lord returns (Daniel 12:1-2), which means after the Church is raptured/ resurrected and made perfect.