The Weekend Word
14 For we have come to share in Christ, if indeed we hold our original confidence firm to the end.
- Big IF – what does
- To the end = perseverance?
- “original confidence” go back to verse 6 from last week – “And we are his house if indeed we hold fast our confidence and our boasting in our hope.”
- What is that original confidence? That God, in Christ Jesus, forgives sin.
- This phrase may be our call to holiness and the hope of future glory given to us in our baptism.
15 As it is said, “Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion.”
16 For who were those who heard and yet rebelled? Was it not all those who left Egypt led by Moses?
- Tell the story. (at this point in my class we would read and discuss each passage I have listed in v.16-19. They are must reads for understanding)
- Exodus 15:22 – 16:3
- Numbers 11 Quail
- Numbers 14 – complaining about what was seen / said Numbers 13 (exploring Canaan)
17 And with whom was he provoked for forty years? Was it not with those who sinned, whose bodies fell in the wilderness?
18 And to whom did he swear that they would not enter his rest, but to those who were disobedient?
- Read all of Psalm 95
- A call to worship and then a warning.
19 So we see that they were unable to enter because of unbelief.
Much will be said in chapter 4 about entering God’s rest. Where do we see that? Luke 16 – The Rich Man and Lazarus.
1Therefore, while the promise of entering his rest still stands, let us fear lest any of you should seem to have failed to reach it.
- The access to God’s rest is faith – belief
- Faith is a noun form
- Believe is the verb form
- In NT Greek, they are the same thought.
- The writer seems to be very concerned that some will not enter God’s rest or that some have not attained it.
- There also seems to be a concern that this is not an open offer – the clock is ticking .. which it is.
- Do you think that the average Christian gives this much thought? Or is it just a settled matter?
2 For good news came to us just as to them, but the message they heard did not benefit them, because they were not united by faith with those who listened.
- Good News = Gospel
- Those going to church each week are hearing the Good News
- But is that enough, or does it have to be embraced by faith?
- Example – 2 people sitting next to each other hearing the same message at the same time.
- Do people make wrong choices? What makes people walk away?
- Heard it but blew it off. Heard it but too busy.
- It wasn’t united by faith. Not that they did not have enough faith, and not that they had not mustered up enough of their faith.
3 For we who have believed enter that rest, as he has said, “As I swore in my wrath,
‘They shall not enter my rest,’” although his works were finished from the foundation of the world.
- Is this future or present?
- We who have believed it is present tense.
4 For he has somewhere spoken of the seventh day in this way: “And God rested on the seventh day from all his works.”
- I still love the way that the writer does scripture references – “For he has somewhere spoken of the seventh day in this way”
- This is Genesis 2:2
- We must remember that there were no chapters and verses in the Bible at this time.
- Think about references – today with a handheld devise you can type in key words, and it will pop up.
- Back then, he would have to go get the right scroll and start unrolling to find the passage.
- What is that rest? Was God tired?
- No, it was a rest from his creative work. Creating out of nothing was now done and not to be done again.
- Today – everything now reproduces itself.
- Does this mean that God no longer does anything?
- See John 5:16-17 – “And this was why the Jews were persecuting Jesus, because he was doing these things on the Sabbath. 17 But Jesus answered them, “My Father is working until now, and I am working.”
- Who here is familiar with Deism?
- Deism is really a practical Atheism
- You don’t find Deists around any longer – they now just openly call themselves atheists.
5 And again in this passage he said, “They shall not enter my rest.”
- Another passage Psalm 95:11
- This is kind of a transition passage here
- The Genesis passage speaks of his rest and by connection rest for those who will enter.
- But this passage now talks of those who, by God’s judgment won’t enter. The Israelites.
Not the best place to end but I am over my word count for this week.