April 26th, 2007
One of the persistent fantasies of the working week is that of the well-earned rest. Monday morning comes, and your alarm clock wakes you way to early and you struggle out of bed. As you wearily and reluctantly make your way to work, you promise yourself that one day you will step out of the rat race and take a well-earned rest. The weekend comes, but you don’t get your well-earned rest then because you’ve got so much work to do that you’ve got to work weekends as well, or you have housing renovations that have to be done, or you have kids that have to be taken places. The weekends vanish without any room for rest, and you’re back into the weekday grind…
The Letter to the Hebrews — Chapter 4
4:1 Let us be careful that none of you should seem to fall short of the promise of entering his rest. 4:2 We have had the good news explained to us, just as they had, but the message they heard did not benefit them, because the people who heard it did not combine it with faith. 4:3 We who have believed do enter that rest. It is just as he said, “As I swore in my anger, they will not enter my rest,” although his work was finished at the creation of the world. 4:4 Somewhere he has said this about the seventh day, “God rested on the seventh day from all his work,” 4:5 and here again, “They will not enter my rest.”
4:6 Some people will still enter it, but the people to whom the good news was explained in the past failed to enter because of disobedience, 4:7 so he designates a particular day, today, speaking through David a long time later, as previously mentioned, “Today if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts.”
4:8 If Joshua had given them rest, he would not have spoken afterwards about another day. 4:9 So there is still a Sabbath rest for the people of God. 4:10 People who enter God’s rest also rest from their own work, as God did from his. 4:11 We should do our best to enter that rest, and make sure that no-one falls into that same pattern of disobedience. 4:12 The word of God is living and active, and sharper than any two-edged sword, penetrating until it divides soul from spirit, joints from marrow. It can discern the thoughts and intentions of the heart.
4:13 Nothing that has been created can hide from his sight. Everything is naked and exposed before the eyes of the one to whom we have to render our account. 4:14 We have a great high priest, who has passed through the heavens, Jesus, the Son of God, so we must keep a firm grip on our faith. 4:15 Our high priest is not someone who cannot empathise with our weaknesses. He is someone who has been tempted in every way like us, yet without sin. 4:16 So we should approach the throne of grace boldly, to receive mercy and find grace to help us in time of need.
Entry Filed under: Hope