Hebrews 4:11 Let us labour therefore to enter into that rest, lest any man fall after the same example of unbelief.
I used to be puzzled by this scripture which speaks of labouring to enter the rest. Labour and rest?? It seems like a paradox! But then I remembered this saying my father used to refer to often.
My dad used to always say;
"Any dead fish can go downstream, but it takes a live one to swim against the current."
There is a strong force at work in this world. And it is taking people downstream. No effort required on their part. It is fueled by satan and his demons, seeking to draw men away from God. But when you've been made alive with the fire of the Holy Spirit, you can swim against the current, And you MUST! The Holy Spirit will become your strength in weakness.
Satan began in the garden of Eden with Adam and Eve, causing Eve to doubt Gods love and care for her through Adam (her spiritual head) . And that strong satanic current is seeking to draw men and women away still today. Women away from submission and men away from leading their wives- which is Gods plan for the genders.
To go the way of God (simple obedience and trust) we must battle against that strong current. But if we get on board with the way of God we have a stronger current (the wind of His Holy Spirit) that will carry us where He would have us go!
God gave Adam the command not eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, before Eve was created, and so we know that Adam relayed that command to Eve. So when the serpent caused Eve to doubt, not only was he causing her to doubt God, but he was causing her to doubt Adam. He said : did God really say??? I believe he targeted her confidence in her husband at that point! I wonder if she thought somehow Adam had messed up when he conveyed the message to her....God had given Adam to her to care for her soul, and to doubt Adams ability was to doubt Gods ability. God had given her to Adam and it was Adams responsibility to provide for her. Did she not believe that God knew what He was doing?? Would he not enable Adam to care for her?? Eve's downfall began when she began to entertain the lies of the serpent. And then she began to plan by her own works to accomplish her goals instead of staying on board with Gods plan. And men and women have been setting out with their own set of plans in hand ever since.
Hebrews 4:9 There remaineth therefore a rest to the people of God.
10 For he that is entered into his rest, he also hath ceased from his own works, as God did from his. ( are we walking in our own ideas and plans or are we following the leading of the spirit (which will point to Christ the Living word of God ?)
His yoke is easy and His burden is light
11 Let us labour therefore to enter into that rest, lest any man fall after the same example of unbelief. ( the labour is only to cast down the lies that seek to draw us away from God's simple plan for us to be completely dependant upon Him (HIS WORD!)) It is labour to eliminate anything (idols) that would draw us away from simplicity to bow before Christ the Living Word each day.
12 For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. ( The word of God cuts right through all the bologne and seperates that which is of the flesh and that which is of the spirit) We cannot know what is important unless we bow before the Word and have God use the sword of the Spirit to divide assunder
13 Neither is there any creature that is not manifest in his sight: but all things are naked and opened unto the eyes of him with whom we have to do. We can try to serve God without (The SPIRIT of God guiding us through The WORD of God ), but God sees right through it. It is just the work of the flesh...... We are naked before Him unless we are putting on the armour of God daily!
14 Seeing then that we have a great high priest, that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our profession.
15 For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.
16 Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.
It's like someone who works their whole life toward the goal of retiring on a tropical island. The work needs to be done on the front end to ensure the rest on the tail end. The work on the front end of our day will ensure a more restful day on the tail end (the rest of the day)
And even though there is labour involved to cut through the lies and get to Gods word we have the assurance that we are provided for once we get to Jesus the living word (through prayer) My goal is to daily labour to make resting in Gods presence, my first priority . In doing so , I and my family are provided for- since what I recieve from the hand of God (through Christ (the Living Word), I can then take and share with others around me . Not only conveying those things verbally , but being a living epistle known and read of men. It is in bowing before His Word daily that I recieve grace and mercy to help in time of need (which is ALL the time.)
SO - Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.
1Let us therefore fear, lest, a promise being left us of entering into his rest, any of you should seem to come short of it.
2 For unto us was the gospel preached, as well as unto them: (Israelites) but the word preached did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in them that heard it.
3 For we which have believed do enter into rest, as he said, As I have sworn in my wrath, if they shall enter into my rest: although the works were finished from the foundation of the world.
4 For he spake in a certain place of the seventh day on this wise, And God did rest the seventh day from all his works.
5 And in this place again, If they shall enter into my rest.
6 Seeing therefore it remaineth that some must enter therein, and they to whom it was first preached entered not in because of unbelief:
7 Again, he limiteth a certain day, saying in David, To day, after so long a time; as it is said, To day if ye will hear his voice, harden not your hearts.
To go about our days and lives without labouring to enter His rest and putting on the armour of God (which gives us peace of mind and rest), is acting in unbelief and trying to light our own fire.
Isaiah 50: speaking of Jesus who was to come to earth to save us (THE LIVING WORD)
2 Wherefore, when I came, was there no man? when I called, was there none to answer? Is my hand shortened at all, that it cannot redeem? or have I no power to deliver? behold, at my rebuke I dry up the sea, I make the rivers a wilderness: their fish stinketh, because there is no water, and dieth for thirst.
3 I clothe the heavens with blackness, and I make sackcloth their covering.
4 The Lord God hath given me the tongue of the learned, that I should know how to speak a word in season to him that is weary: he wakeneth morning by morning, he wakeneth mine ear to hear as the learned.
5 The Lord God hath opened mine ear, and I was not rebellious, neither turned away back. ( Jesus turned not His back to his father but met with Him every day many times a day-We must be careful not to turn our back to Christ the word who is the complete revelation of the Father)
6 I gave my back to the smiters, and my cheeks to them that plucked off the hair: I hid not my face from shame and spitting.
7 For the Lord God will help me; therefore shall I not be confounded: therefore have I set my face like a flint, and I know that I shall not be ashamed.
8 He is near that justifieth me; who will contend with me? let us stand together: who is mine adversary? let him come near to me.
9 Behold, the Lord God will help me; who is he that shall condemn me? lo, they all shall wax old as a garment; the moth shall eat them up.
10 Who is among you that feareth the Lord, that obeyeth the voice of his servant, (the Holy Spirit who speaks on behalf of Christ) that walketh in darkness, and hath no light? let him trust in the name of the Lord, and stay upon his God.
11 Behold, all ye that kindle a fire, that compass yourselves about with sparks: walk in the light of your fire, and in the sparks that ye have kindled. This shall ye have of mine hand; ye shall lie down in sorrow
Peter warmed Himself by a man made fire the night he denied Jesus three times..... He couldn't see himself for who he really was when he rejected Christs word .... He became blind to his own condition.
There are several instances where Peter rejected the words of Christ
Matt 16:21 From that time forth began Jesus to shew unto his disciples, how that he must go unto Jerusalem, and suffer many things of the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and be raised again the third day.
22 Then Peter took him, and began to rebuke him, saying, Be it far from thee, Lord: this shall not be unto thee.
23 But he turned, and said unto Peter, Get thee behind me, Satan: thou art an offence unto me: for thou savourest not the things that be of God, but those that be of men.
We need to be careful what we tell other Christians, Peter said "Be it far from thee, Lord: this shall not be unto thee" and Jesus rebuked him. How many times have we told people "you shouldn't put up withn that" God wouldn't want you to take that! Well my bible tells me to take up my cross and follow Him!
There is a spirit in this world that is anti-Christ and when Jesus said get Thee behind me , He was speaking to that wicked spirit that had sway over Peter. When we reject the word of Christ on any point we become subject to that same spirit of anti-Christ. And when we do , we savour not the things that are of God but those that are of men. ( Matt 16:23 )And unless we turn back to God , we will lie down in sorrow. I've endured much sorrow since becoming a Christian that could have been avoided had I just stayed close to God rather than trying to do things my way.
Behold, all ye that kindle a fire, that compass yourselves about with sparks: walk in the light of your fire, and in the sparks that ye have kindled. This shall ye have of mine hand; ye shall lie down in sorrow
Peter turned back we know that . He wept bitterly over his failure to believe Jesus at his word.
When Peter was sifted Jesus was praying for Him
Luke 22:31 And the Lord said, Simon, Simon, behold, Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat:
32 But I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not: and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren.
I have been in Peters position... Sifted like wheat , but I knew that Jesus was praying for me through reading this account in Luke. God assured me that although He waas allowing me to be sifted, if I would stand on the word of God as my only sure foundation, I WOULD make it through the sifting (because Christ is still intereceding for the Saints- as he sits at the right hand of the Father and ever lives to make intercession for us- AND every prayer that Jesus prays is a RIGHT prayer- a prayer that God will answer ) I also had the assurance that he would use me when it was all over and I had returned from the trial stronger and more sure of the truth of his Word. That he would use me to strengthen my brethren. So stay close to the Lord! Labor to enter the rest (through prayer and the word and fellowship) Don't run from any of these things, because we are running from Him when we do. The pull of the world is strong but the power of the Holy Spirit is stronger! We must choose by faith to do battle in our mind and to stay close to God every moment. If we walk in the Spirit, the wind of His Holy Spirit will be our power.
- WE HAVE THIS TREASURE IN EARTHEN VESSELS THAT THE EXCELLENCY OF THE POWER MAY BE OF GOD. I am the wife Of Don and mother of two boys and a stay at home mom. My goal is to follow Jesus in all aspects of life but starting first and foremost in my own home.Titus 2:3-5 I stumble often and get discouraged, but am amazed as I go to my Lord in faith that he looks upon me with compassion, forgiveness and love each and every time. His love for me seems to increase as I keep going back to His throne of grace!! Of course I know His love never changes, but my ability to see His love increases each time He picks me up, dusts me off and says "keep on going Ruth.... I love you!" And because of His great love, I am falling more and more in love with Him each and every day.