Growing In Grace
Holy God, sovereign, faithful and generous in mercy, I wait in eager anticipation of Your word to me today.
Read Hebrews 4:1–11
Scripture taken from the THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION, NIV Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
“The Canaan rest for Israel is a picture of the spiritual rest we find in Christ when we surrender to him. It is by believing that we enter into his rest (4:3); it is by obeying God by faith, and surrendering to his will, that the rest enters into us” (“Warren Wiersbe).
What is rest (1)? Grace is rest. There is nothing we can do to earn that grace, and nothing can make God withdraw the offer. We simply rest in his grace. However, as in many other places in Hebrews, the writer says something more. Entering the Promised Land was a picture to the Hebrew nation of having arrived, but it was not the end of their obligation to honor and obey God. They had to realize in everyday life what it meant to be in the land of promise. Their rest as well as ours belongs to the future, not just the past. How they and we continue on this journey of trusting God evidences how much we have entered into the reality of receiving salvation. “For as long, then, as that promise of resting in him pulls us on to God’s goal for us, we need to be careful that we’re not disqualified” (Heb. 4:1, The Message).
Similarly, when a person is convicted about the quality of their Christian life, saying simply “let go and let God” does not do justice to the “be careful” (1) or the “make every effort” (11) teaching of Hebrews 4. “It is God’s work to make us holy. But neither can any Christian hope to be conformed to the likeness of Christ in his everyday life simply by making sure that he does nothing about it. It is a strenuous, costly business to be a Christian. Believers must strive to enter the rest of the people of God (11)” (Raymond Brown).
It is not easy to enter into intimate fellowship with God. How goes it with you?
Lord, today I rest in Your grace that saves me. Jolt me out of hardness of heart and spur me to an ongoing, vital relationship with You.