3rd October, 2010
BRUCE C. WEARNE
Read Hebrews 4: 10-16
We are, after all, created in God's image and since God presents Himself to us as having rested when His creation work was done, so also those who enter in their rest will image Him by enjoying the rest, the Sabbath. The promise is that "our" Sabbath will indeed be to share in God's rest. In the meantime our task is laid out for us - our lifetime of work, our labour, is to be busy "entering"; "today" is the day of the present continuous tense. Our lives are to be lived boldly, knowing that God's rest is our destination. Jesus Christ promises to bring us into God's rest. We can rely on that (John 14).
"Here is the answer to the question: who can enter in God's rest? The answer is plain and simple. Jesus Christ, our great high priest, has every angle of our human weakness covered."
Just as the Lord God has entered into His rest (4: 4), and Jesus Christ has gone on to take His place on our behalf within that rest (4: 14), so the Lord's people, as His restored image bearers, still have their work to do. As creatures of the sixth day (Genesis 1: 24-31), they walk by faith until God's re-working in them is complete, when, at God's command they shall cease from all their labours, as He has from His. We hear the admonition "Let us set ourselves to enter that rest." (4: 11).
Here is the answer to the question: who can enter in God's rest? The answer is plain and simple. Jesus Christ, our great high priest, has every angle of our human weakness covered. Moreover, the sufferings of Christ Jesus, Great High Priest, encourage these believers in their sufferings, since they know all too well how it was that this suffering servant of the Lord, their Messiah, was handed over to the Romans to be crucified.
For these Jewish Christians living in Greek-speaking communities, this letter brought an invaluable encouragement. The message is the message Peter proclaimed on the Day of Pentecost. The Lord's mercy is everlasting. Repentance and faith. The Messiah has done His work. Life is to trust and obey.
"Let us set ourselves to enter that rest."
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