By faith Abel offered God a better sacrifice than Cain did. By faith he was commended1 as a righteous man, when God spoke well of his offerings.2 And by faith he still speaks, even though he is dead.35
By faith Enoch was taken from this life, so that he did not experience death; he could not be found, because God had taken him away.4 For before he was taken, he was commended as one who pleased God.
And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him5 must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.
By faith Noah, when warned about things not yet seen,6 in holy fear built an ark7 to save his family.8 By his faith he condemned the world and became heir of the righteousness that comes by faith.98
By faith Abraham, when called to go to a place he would later receive as his inheritance,10 obeyed and went,11 even though he did not know where he was going.
By faith he made his home in the promised land12 like a stranger in a foreign country; he lived in tents,13 as did Isaac and Jacob, who were heirs with him of the same promise.1410
For he was looking forward to the city15 with foundations,16 whose architect and builder is God.1711
By faith Abraham, even though he was past age--and Sarah herself was barren18--was enabled to become a father19 because hea considered him faithful20 who had made the promise.
And so from this one man, and he as good as dead,21 came descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and as countless as the sand on the seashore.2213
All these people were still living by faith when they died. They did not receive the things promised;23 they only saw them and welcomed them from a distance.24 And they admitted that they were aliens and strangers on earth.2514
People who say such things show that they are looking for a country of their own.
If they had been thinking of the country they had left, they would have had opportunity to return.2616
Instead, they were longing for a better country--a heavenly one.27 Therefore God is not ashamed28 to be called their God,29 for he has prepared a city30 for them.
By faith Abraham, when God tested him, offered Isaac as a sacrifice.31 He who had received the promises was about to sacrifice his one and only son,
even though God had said to him, "It is through Isaac that your offspringb will be reckoned."c3219
Abraham reasoned that God could raise the dead,33 and figuratively speaking, he did receive Isaac back from death.
By faith Isaac blessed Jacob and Esau in regard to their future.3421
By faith Jacob, when he was dying, blessed each of Joseph's sons,35 and worshiped as he leaned on the top of his staff.
By faith Joseph, when his end was near, spoke about the exodus of the Israelites from Egypt and gave instructions about his bones.36