Tag: Jesus our rest
Scripture reading for January 14th: Matthew 11, Psalm 10:1-8, Proverbs 3:7-10
Jesus centered his early ministry in the region around the Sea of Galilee where there were big crowds of people who gathered to hear Him. Jesus had performed many miracles of healing and deliverance for sick and bound people but many people refused to repent of their sins and believe in Him. Jesus spoke plainly to the crowds about their condition and the coming judgment on their sins if they failed to repent.
“Woe to you Korazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! If the miracles that were performed in you had been performed in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes. But I tell you, it will be more bearable for Tyre and Sidon on the day of judgment than for you. And you, Capernaum, will you be lifted up to the skies? If the miracles that were performed in you had been performed in Sodom, it would have remained to this day. But I tell you that it will be more bearable for Sodom on the day of judgment than for you.” (Matthew 11:21-24)
Miracles either open a heart to the Lord or harden the heart further when there is no response. They bring knowledge of God’s love and power in a visible form that makes a person more accountable than if they had no personal knowledge. Proud hearts refuse to believe and make excuses for what has happened and bring judgment on themselves in the end. The church of Jesus Christ has been given power to lay hands on the sick and cast out devils as well as to see miracles come from the ministry of the Holy Spirit through His saints. We in the church often feel that this is the answer to all the problems and that great growth would occur if we could just see more miracles. This was not the case with Jesus Christ and His ministry in this part of Israel!
However, for those who will listen and come to Jesus, He promises true rest! “Come to Me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.” (Matthew 11:28-30) Repentance and rest bring true salvation!
As we ponder the past week and our reading through Exodus, we are reminded in Exodus 20:8-11 of one of the reasons for keeping the Sabbath–a seventh day of rest. God wants us to remember his pattern of creation. He Himself set the pattern of working six days and resting on the seventh day. No work was to be done! It was a day holy to the Lord because He blessed it and made it holy. In New Testament times, the first day of the week was used for worship and rest in celebration of the resurrection. The main thing was to take one day out of seven, not necessarily Saturday or Sunday. In fact New Testament truth teaches that each day is the Sabbath day–a day to rest in Jesus! (Hebrews 4:6-11)
I was in a prayer group with some pastors this past week and one was telling how when we older ones grew up, Sunday was really a day of rest. Stores weren’t open and restaurants were closed. There were no movie theaters open and no TV in those days. The generation of our day doesn’t remember that day. A day of rest is foreign to them. They have no reference for the command of the Lord to remember the Sabbath day and keep it holy! I believe we would be happier and healthier if we heeded this simple plan of the Lord. Take time to rest in the Lord and be refreshed for the week ahead! May you rest in Jesus Christ and his finished work each and every day!
“Come unto me all you who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” Matthew 11:28-30