Friday, June 22, 2012

Blogging Through Hebrews 4:1-11

Therefore, while the promise of entering his rest still stands, let us fear lest any of you should seem to have failed to reach it. For good news came to us just as to them, but the message they heard did not benefit them, because they were not united by faith with those who listened. For we who have believed enter that rest, as he has said,

    “As I swore in my wrath,
    ‘They shall not enter my rest,’

although his works were finished from the foundation of the world. For he has somewhere spoken of the seventh day in this way: “And God rested on the seventh day from all his works.” And again in this passage he said,

    “They shall not enter my rest.”

Since therefore it remains for some to enter it, and those who formerly received the good news failed to enter because of disobedience, again he appoints a certain day, “Today,” saying through David so long afterward, in the words already quoted,

    “Today, if you hear his voice,
    do not harden your hearts.” 

For if Joshua had given them rest, God would not have spoken of another day later on. So then, there remains a Sabbath rest for the people of God, for whoever has entered God's rest has also rested from his works as God did from his. Let us therefore strive to enter that rest, so that no one may fall by the same sort of disobedience. - (Hebrews 4:1-11)

It has been a while since I did any blogging in Hebrews so I am eager to get back at it and this section of chapter 4 contains one of my favorite passages.

Chapter four is all about rest.

I love what the writer says here about rest and how he applies it back to the Sabbath day rest that prefigures the eternal rest in Christ. We often, erroneously in my opinion, try to apply Sunday as the new Sabbath and enforce all sorts of rules about what we can or can't do on Sunday. In all of our efforts to say don't do this and don't do that we end up working more on Sunday than any other day and completely miss the point! Sunday is so often a day of stress for Christians trying to please God by following man-made rules when Christ calls us to rest in Him.

The true Sabbath rest for Christians is in Christ, resting in Him, resting from our vain attempts to work to please God and resting in what He has already completely and finally pleased God the Father on our behalf.

It certainly can be hard to see that rest sometimes in a world that is groaning under the weight of sin. It is so tempting to try to do things under our own power and in our own way but Christ has already finished all the work that ever needs to be done. But when we understand the rest that Jesus calls His sheep into we should see a time of rest and peace that comes only when following Jesus and resting totally in Him.

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