Friday 11 April, 2014

Hebrews 4:1-11

4 God’s promise of enjoying his rest still stands. So be careful that none of you fails to receive it. 2 The good news was preached to our people long ago. It has also been preached to us. The message they heard didn’t have any value for them. They didn’t combine it with faith. 3 Now we who have believed enjoy that rest. God said, “When I was angry I took an oath. I said, ‘They will never enjoy the rest I planned for them.’” (Psalm 95:11) Ever since God created the world, his work has been finished. 4 Somewhere he spoke about the seventh day. He said, “On the seventh day God rested from all his work.” (Genesis 2:2) 5 In the part of Scripture I talked about earlier God said, “They will never enjoy the rest I planned for them.” (Psalm 95:11) 6 It is still true that some will enjoy that rest. But those who had the good news preached to them earlier didn’t go in. That was because they didn’t obey. 7 So God again chose a certain day. He named it Today. He did that when he spoke through David a long time later. As it was said earlier, “Listen to his voice today. If you hear it, don’t be stubborn.” (Psalm 95:7,8) 8 Suppose Joshua had given them rest. If he had, God would not have spoken later about another day. 9 So there is still a Sabbath rest for God’s people. 10 God rested from his work. Those who enjoy God’s rest also rest from their work. 11 So let us make every effort to enjoy that rest. Then no one will fall into sin by following the example of those who didn’t obey God.

The writer of Hebrews is talking about ‘rest’ in this passage. It’s an actual place. It was made by God before the world began. God rested there on the seventh day after creating the world. God wants me there too. I get disqualified from it by disobedience and I should be afraid of not entering it. I can only enter it by faith.

Here is the part I like. Verse 7 says the time to enter is today. It’s ready and waiting for me right now. I don’t have to worry. I don’t have to stress. I don’t need to be consumed by regret or guilt or fear. My God is streaming into my desperate, present moment with all the resources of eternity and inviting me to experience His rest. I need only obey Him, believe Him and go to Him.

God, I need your rest. Thanks that you offer it so freely. I’m done with sin and lack of belief. I come to you for rest. Amen

Written by Boudy van Noppen

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