Tag: seventh day

Sunday rest and reflection!

Dear Friends,

This year we will be reading six days and resting on the seventh in the pattern outlined by God in Genesis and Deuteronomy.  The only difference is that in the Old Testament times, the seventh day would have been Saturday.  Because Jesus rose from the dead on the third day after His death by crucifixion, the early church celebrated their day of rest on Sunday, the day Jesus rose from the dead!

God set aside a day of rest for His people in order to help them re-connect with Him and enjoy His presence, Word, and rest.  God understands the stressful world that exists now because of man’s sin and rebellion.  He calls His people to enjoy rest and work out of a rest in Him every day.  In New Testament thinking, each day is another day to rest in Christ’s finished work.  “Today” is another “sabbath” day to rest.  Hebrews 4:6-11 explains this understanding.

May the Lord refresh you today as you rest in Christ’s glorious salvation!  He is worthy of all praise, honor, and glory every day on earth and forever in His Kingdom!

In His Love,  Pastor John

Tags : , ,

Entering His Rest!

Scripture reading for November 2nd: Hebrews 4:1-16

“Therefore, since the promise of entering His rest still stands, let us be  careful that none of you be found to have fallen short of it.  For we also have had the Gospel preached to us, just as they did; but the message they heard was of no value to them, because those who heard did not combine it with faith.  Now we who have believed enter that rest. .” (Hebrews 4:1-3a)

Faith in Jesus Christ for complete salvation brings us into what the writer of Hebrews says is ‘His rest’.   Jesus Christ finished our salvation when He cried from the cross, “It is finished!” (John 19:30)   However, even this act was completed in God’s mind before the creation of the world. (Hebrews 4:3b)   God rested along with creation on the seventh day, which God set aside as a day of rest.  (Genesis 2:1-3)  Man’s first full day on earth was to be this day of rest.  Man was to rest in God’s finished provision and to worship and enjoy God’s fellowship as a child with a loving Father!

However, sin entered and man was lured into a dependency on his own abilities to know good and evil.  He gave into Satan’s temptation to try and become like God in his own effort.  The consequences were deadly!  Man died because sin separated him from the relationship of rest in God’s complete provision.   There is truly no rest for those outside of God’s grace.  Eternal weeping and gnashing of teeth is the fate of those dying in their sins! (Revelation 20:15)

God set apart a nation of people through Abraham who He could use as an example of those who would follow Him by faith back into the rest.  Moses was leading this nation out of slavery in Egypt, but the people would not listen to God’s command to possess the promised land.  They did not mix faith with the word of God!  (Hebrews 4:2)  God swore that they would never enter His rest because of their unbelief!  (Psalm 95:11)

But ‘Today’ the promise of rest in Jesus Christ is open to all men.  “Let us, therefore, make every effort to enter that rest, so that no one will fall by following their example of disobedience.” (Hebrews 4:11)  What a joy it is to rest in the hope of eternal life!  Let’s lay hold by faith and enter in today!

Tags : , , , , ,

Fixing Your Thoughts

Scripture reading for December 12th: Hebrews 3-4

“Therefore, holy brothers, who share in the heavenly calling, fix your thoughts on Jesus, the apostle and high priest whom we confess.  He was faithful to the one who appointed Him, just as Moses was faithful in all God’s house.  Jesus has been found worthy of greater honor that Moses, just as the builder of a house has greater honor than the house itself.” Hebrews 3:1-3

How we need to fix our thoughts today!  There is so much confusion from this  world bombarding us with it’s worries, demands, and fears.  The Bible is clear about where to fix our thoughts–on Jesus Christ!  By focusing on Jesus we can have rest from worry, fear, and religious works that try to gain God’s favor. We can rest in the finished work of Jesus Christ to bring us into God’s glorious rest!

Jesus is the Apostle and High Priest that we confess.  Jesus is the one sent by God to this earth to bring good news.  He is the good news from the Father!  He rose from the dead and became a priest forever after the order of Melchizedek.  (Hebrews 5:8-10)  His perfect obedience enabled Him to be made perfect through suffering death on a cross for our sins. He is a great High Priest who knows what we are going through and how to come to our aid!  (Hebrews 4:14-16)  He lives forever and never sleeps.  He can intercede for us day or night.  His priestly ministry is always available and we have access by His own blood!

Jesus is greater than Moses, who led the people out of Egypt and gave them the law of God.  Moses was supposed to lead the people into the promised land, but the people rebelled.  They would not listen to God’s Word and rebelled.  Their unbelief kept them from their inheritance!  (Hebrews 3:19)

Jesus is greater than Joshua who also failed to lead God’s people to the full conquest of the promised land.  Jesus ushers each of us into a new day–today!  (Hebrews 4:6-7) We can enter the rest by faith in Him!  As we hear His voice and respond in faith to His word, we rest from our religious works and place our full trust on God’s provision through Jesus Christ!

This theme of rest is one of my favorites!  I have been programmed to work for everything all my life.  I must be diligent to enter this rest by placing my faith in Christ’s work for me.  It takes humility and respect for God’s sovereign plan to enter in.  What a glorious rest!  Today is the day if you need real rest!  Share this rest with someone close to you!

Tags : , , , ,