By faith, Abraham, at the time of testing, offered Isaac back to God. Acting in faith, he was as ready to return the promised son, his only son, as he had been to receive him -
and this after he had already been told, "Your descendants shall come from Isaac."
Abraham figured that if God wanted to, he could raise the dead. In a sense, that's what happened when he received Isaac back, alive from off the altar.
By an act of faith, Isaac reached into the future as he blessed Jacob and Esau.
By an act of faith, Jacob on his deathbed blessed each of Joseph's sons in turn, blessing them with God's blessing, not his own - as he bowed worshipfully upon his staff.
By an act of faith, Joseph, while dying, prophesied the exodus of Israel, and made arrangements for his own burial.
By an act of faith, Moses' parents hid him away for three months after his birth. They saw the child's beauty, and they braved the king's decree.
By faith, Moses, when grown, refused the privileges of the Egyptian royal house.
He chose a hard life with God's people rather than an opportunistic soft life of sin with the oppressors.
He valued suffering in the Messiah's camp far greater than Egyptian wealth because he was looking ahead, anticipating the payoff.
By an act of faith, he turned his heel on Egypt, indifferent to the king's blind rage. He had his eye on the One no eye can see, and kept right on going.
Published by permission. Originally published by NavPress in English as THE MESSAGE: The Bible in Contemporary Language copyright 2002 by Eugene Peterson. All rights reserved. (The Message Bible Online)