The Weekend Word

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29 Responses

  1. Nonnie says:

    So the “rest” I have is because of what Jesus has done….certainly not anything I do. I rest in Him, abide in Him. That is all I “do.” If I am working, straining, struggling at trying justify myself, make myself righteous, than I am not entering His rest. Or conversely, if I am arrogantly refusing the grace, the finished work of Christ, I am not resting in Christ.

    When I rest in Christ, completely dependent upon Him, my response is that I want others to know this wonderful good news that I have discovered. I want my life to reflect that “rest” in God’s grace and forgiveness found in Christ.

  2. Em says:

    well… another ponder for me… thank you, MLD and Nonnie, too

    rest is an interesting word… could it have any meaning without an antonym? i suspect – dunno – that this rest does not mean that one has no pain, no sorrow, no confusions, no reasons to cry… God is an absolute and immutable and, frankly, sometimes that is discouraging when life is a lonely pilgrim walk – the cross is our proof of His love and the resurrection is the proof of the victory, but…

    as a young wife i was blessed with a very competent husband… when something that made the house or the car run malfunctioned i found myself very upset and frustrated, but underneath was this calm… it would be fixed when my husband got home from work (and it always was 🙂 ) maybe that “faith” is what we need to persevere (not saying that every good husband has to be a Mr. Fixit – BTW)

    when God rested from the work of creating the environment we occupy is that the same “rest” as what He offers to us as a product of entering into learning and accepting His teaching? looks like rest can be from positive endeavors, too?

  3. Martin Luther's Disciple says:

    In my normal interpretation of passive reception, I don’t think that my rest is the topic as much as my entering HIS rest.

    On the outside nothing may change for me – except I have entered his rest.

  4. Jean says:

    Let’s look a little closer at God’s “rest”:

    God completed His work of creation in six days. Each of those days ended with: “And there was evening and there was morning, the [1st through 6th day]”. When it comes to the 7th day, the day that God “rested”, it was not followed with “And there was evening and there was morning….” Therefore, the 7th day is not time-bound. The 7th day opens Scripture to the unfolding of salvation history. The “today” spoken of by the author to the Hebrews is God’s 7th day. We also are living within the 7th day.

    Notice that in the creation account, human beings do not join God in His rest. Human beings, creatures, do not participate in God by nature. God’s rest is not a natural inheritance for human beings. As Jesus teaches, “The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath.” Thus, we are not made naturally for the Sabbath. Therefore, God’s rest is a **gift to human beings.

    As MLD wrote, the Father and the Son are still at work. But, what are they doing? The Father and the Son are working to bring creation into the rest of their eternal love; into God’s Sabbath.

    In the Letter to the Hebrews, Jesus, our pioneer and forerunner, enter the sanctuary not made with hands to offer a sacrifice that opened the way for others to follow. “Rest” in Hebrews is also called “homeland”, “a city”, and a “kingdom that cannot be shaken.”

    In terms of the present, as MLD indicated, our rest is in Christ’s promise (i.e., I am for you). Reset in this sense may be seen as assurance.

  5. Uriahisaliveandwell says:

    Thoughts on His “Rest.”

    He is our hiding place.

    We will not be in complete rest until we receive our inheritance.

    Until then, it is the sanctification via the Holy Spirit that leads us through the crucibles to try and to test us, while also comforting and reassuring us that all is in His hands and in this, nothing will happened that He will not enable and strengthen us to endure as we take that deep breath and just walk in Him.

    Not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit.

    Rest is like trust except one come before the other most of the time—

  6. Uriahisaliveandwell says:

    Jean,

    That was awesome !!

  7. Em says:

    #4-“As MLD wrote, the Father and the Son are still at work. But, what are they doing? The Father and the Son are working to bring creation into the rest of their eternal love; into God’s Sabbath.”
    ….&…..
    #5-“Rest is like trust except one come before the other most of the time—”
    good words…
    our rest (now) then comes from trusting that God IS right now doing what He says that THEY are doing ?

    i’m thinking of the drowning man who fights the one who has come to save him … ” he is so busy drowning that he can’t hear his rescuer when he says, “relax and i’ll get you safely through this”

  8. Martin Luther's Disciple says:

    One important thought – at least I think s , is we don’t rest… God rests us. The action is always God’s action – not mine.

  9. Josh the Baptist says:

    Whew. I need some rest. And I love the way Nonnie described it all up in #1. I seem to have a gear that is stuck on “striving”. I love these verses about rest, because even reading them brings me comfort. Maybe one day they will actually catch.

  10. Donner says:

    For we who have believed enter that rest.

    “We who have believed is present tense.”

    YES! Big thumbs up!

  11. Jean says:

    Please keep in mind that the rest we have now we have by faith, not by sight.

  12. Martin Luther's Disciple says:

    The rest is a promise already delivered. You have already been tested.

  13. Martin Luther's Disciple says:

    Should read = you have already been rested.

  14. Josh the Baptist says:

    So this is as good as it gets, huh? 🙁

  15. Jean says:

    “As it is said, ‘Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion.’”

    MLD, did not have any bullets under this verse, but I hop it bears some discussion, because there are many “voices” vying for our attention and allegiance.

    Where is His word spoken?

    How do we know we are hearing His voice?

    Jesus warned us to “beware of false prophets” and: “On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?’ And then will I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.’”

    So, what can we do to protect ourselves from false prophets and make sure that we are hearing Christ’s voice?

  16. Martin Luther's Disciple says:

    Josh you are saved, in Christ and now this passage saying you have entered God’s rest. What more do you want?

    Antonio on the old TV show Wings Used to speak of the “sweet feel of relief that only death can bring”. Perhaps that is the silver lining.

  17. Josh the Baptist says:

    I want rest that feels like rest.

  18. Em says:

    Josh, it does feel like rest…
    from my corner, i’ll tell you what rest isn’t.
    although some will label it so. rest isn’t denial or even passivity… but it is in your head… and sometimes we do have to get away from all the clamor and rest our bodies or our minds in order to refocus on it… yes, we meditate – gasp ! – we’ve been doing it for 2,000+ years, the only thing we don’t do is contort our bodies, beyond just bending our knees (which i don’t do because that hurts so much that i can’t concentrate 🙂 ) … hmmm, now that i think about it, sometimes we hurt so much that we can’t focus… and sometimes that is when He speaks assurance that He is carrying the grief, too – He does hurt when we hurt and sometimes He hurts when we don’t …
    i ramble, but, while i think i get MLD’s point, God’s rest isn’t pie in the sky bye and bye IMX
    my favorite pastor/teacher would have called it faith/rest – it is the only rest that Saeed and those like him have now, perhaps – praying for them as i type

  19. Martin Luther's Disciple says:

    The rest is spiritual. Not physical comfort. This is what the book of Revelation is really about as the scences go back and forth between earthly and heavenly. John wrote this as a Gospel for comfort. Dispies have reinterpreted to a completely different story.

    Hebrews is the same.

  20. Em says:

    the result of that spiritual rest can give physical rest, i.e., when i look at my place in time right now, whatever the circumstances, if i refocus on God’s truth/reality, i can relax – God’s got it
    the rest is real, whether we feel it or not, tho

    that said, i don’t think that our Lord was at rest physically or spiritually when he hung as a dying man asking, “My God, why…?” – dunno, but i don’t think so
    yet when He said, “Father into thy hands i commend my spirit…” that was faith/rest

    i really appreciate how the comments here help me focus on the real reality, whether we are in exact agreement or not – thank you to MLD and all

  21. Josh the Baptist says:

    I like your comments here, Em. Thanks.

    I want spiritual, physical, and mental rest.

  22. Jean says:

    “Therefore, 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 author wants us to “fear”. Who and what are we to fear? The reformer Martin Luther taught in his Small Catechism that Christians are to ‘‘fear and love God,’’ in a repeated opening line for each of the 10 Commandments. Fear and love would not appear to mix very well. Why is “fear” healthy for our salvation?

  23. Jean,
    “So, what can we do to protect ourselves from false prophets and make sure that we are hearing Christ’s voice?”

    Read the Bible – the place god promised to speak to us. God has not spoken since the days of the Apostles. If someone tries to tell you something, don’t even listen until the respond to “show me that in the Bible.”

  24. Back to my #19 where I comment about the Book of Revelation. One needs to know the difference between the Church Militant and the Church Triumphant.

    The Church Militant is just what we were speaking of – they are saved, they are in Christ and they have entered God’s rest (all God’s rest means is that you are no longer working for your salvation — you can rest from that.) But the Church Militant is still fighting the fight against the sin, death the world and the devil … this is what Christians through the church do.

    The Church Triumphant is in the exact same condition but their fight is over and they are now in the presence of God.

    The Book of Revelation is just this – telling / describing the Church Militant – the church today and throughout history, seemingly getting it’s butt kicked, but then the scene changes to the heavenly view and you see victory. This goes back and forth several times throughout – ” while this is happening on earth, you can see victory in heaven — meanwhile, back on earth…”

    How it got turned into what Americans think it is today….

    Here, Hebrews is describing the same thing.

  25. Em says:

    how did the book of Revelation get in here?
    and how do you know “Americans” have interpreted it wrong?
    is it a book of “comfort?” i don’t think so… edification, instruction, warning, the puzzle wrapped in an unfolding of history, perhaps…

    the only comfort comes when we see these things unfold, we can tell each other, yes, God said this would be the case, but it didn’t ALL play out in the lives of the first generation of the Church… IMNSHO 🙂

  26. Martin Luther's Disciple says:

    Well, I brought in Revelation as we were discussing entering God’s rest. This is what we see in Hebrews & Revelation.

    Americans have turned John’ s Revelation of Jesus to his church into some story about a continuous war between God & Jews.

    The idea that you think a book in the Bible is not Jesus giving comfort to his church lends to my claim.

  27. Jean says:

    “Read the Bible – the place god promised to speak to us. God has not spoken since the days of the Apostles. If someone tries to tell you something, don’t even listen until the respond to ‘show me that in the Bible.'”

    If only it was this simple. MLD, there are at least 4 different traditions represented on this blog alone, each one of which diverges on certain doctrines (they each hold important) but all claiming to be biblical.

    In answer to my own question in #22, we hear Christ’s voice from the mouth of a preacher. Faith comes by hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ. The physical means of grace are given through the speech act of the preacher heralding the Gospel of Christ.

    St. Paul confronted the Corinthian church about false apostles who were undermining his apostleship with false teaching. St. Paul said: “For I decided to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ and him crucified.” Is that what preachers today do? Do preachers today focus entirely on Jesus Christ in their sermons? Or do they lace their preaching with jokes and personal stories, psychology, therapy, etc.? Worse, do they teach a false, misleading, incomplete or heterodox Jesus?

    For those who are academically inclined, they probably can do a pretty good job at distinguishing biblical teaching from rank heresy by reading their Bible. For others, however, they are fertile ground for false prophets. That much has not really changed much from the days of the OT. It was always about the remnant.

    What I appreciate about you MLD, is your willingness to confront false teaching where ever you find it. Thanks for these studies.

  28. Martin Luther's Disciple says:

    Jean,
    ” we hear Christ’s voice from the mouth of a preacher. Faith comes by hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ. ”

    But what you had better be hearing is a preacher preaching out of the Bible, showing us God’s word out of the Bible – – and not just what he thinks the Bible says.

    I think all 4 traditions you speak of hear all hear the voice of Christ — they just don’t always follow or pass down exactly what they heard. 😉

    Always ask – “show me in the Bible where you got that teaching and I will let you know what I think.”

  29. Em says:

    “Americans have turned John’ s Revelation of Jesus to his church into some story about a continuous war between God & Jews”

    never heard that one before … thought it centered on the N.T. Church and the outcome at the end in a text that layers and flows quite supernaturally … never found the book comforting, but definitely encouraging… so maybe that’s another definition of comfort?

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