Rest – my definition of rest is to relax and unwind both physically and mentally from the craziness and the busyness of the day. But who actually has time to rest with all of the things that we have scheduled ourselves to do? We live in a demanding world of deadlines, to taking care of our families, to being here and there that we have no time to actually rest. Although physical rest is very important for our bodies, it is also important that we find spiritual rest for our souls.
Take a moment and read Hebrews 4:1-11
There 3 types of “rest” in these verses.
- A Past Rest (Canaan)
- A Present Rest (Jesus)
- A Future Rest (Heaven)
1. A Past Rest – Canaan
Hebrews 4:6, “So God’s rest is there for people to enter, but those who first heard this good news failed to enter because they disobeyed God.”
Moses led the people out of their bondage in Egypt to take them to the land of Canaan, their ultimate resting place. This was supposed to be the land flowing with “milk and honey.” But the Israelites did not trust God and disobeyed him. This caused them to wander in the wilderness for 40 years and they could never enter their “promised land” because of this disobedience.
Psalm 95:11, “In my anger I took an oath, They will never enter my place of rest.”
The Life Application Study Bible says “For the Israelites of Moses’ time, this rest was the earthly rest to be found in the Promised Land.” Canaan is the physical representation of the spiritual rest that was and is to come; the ultimate rest that God gives us today.
2. A Present Rest – Jesus
Hebrews 4:7, “So God set another time for entering his rest, and that time is today.”
Wiersbe paints an image in our minds of the past/physical rest with the present/spiritual rest; “The Canaan rest for Israel is a picture of the spiritual rest we find in Christ when we surrender to Him.”
God has given us the opportunity today to have that rest in Jesus Christ. He gave us rest when he died for our sins. All we have to do is lay aside our worries, our fears, our pride, and leave them at the Cross. We must obey his word, follow his teachings, and give our all to his cause. We cannot have rest, until we rest in Him and we must do this daily. Do not wait to enjoy God’s peace because tomorrow might be too late.
3. A Future Rest – Heaven
Hebrews 4:9, “So there is a special rest still waiting for the people of God.”
The Ultimate Rest: Heaven. “God rested when He finished the work of Creation. God’s Son rested when He completed the work of the new creation. We may enter into His rest by trusting His Word and obeying His will. We can do this as we listen to His Word, understand it, trust it, and obey it. Only in this way can we claim our inheritance in Christ.” (Wiersbe)
There is a final rest waiting for us when we have the completed this earthly race. Phillipians 3:14 says, “I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus is calling us.” Keep on pressing, keep on pushing, keep on pursuing our heavenly rest.
Revelation 14:13, “Blessed are those who die in the Lord from now on. Yes, says the Spirit, they are blessed indeed, for they will rest from their hard work; for their good deeds follow them!” To have faith, we must bear the fruit of Godliness. One day we will rest from all of our hard work here on this earth and our reward is Heaven.
Genesis 2:2 says that God rested on the 7th day to indicate the completion of His perfect Creation. One day God is going to come back for His creation and fully renew and restore it. He will take those who are obedient and watchful to their home in the sky. We will finally experience perfect, peaceful rest.
- The Biblical past examples of rest and our daily rest with the Lord do not lead us to death but they lead us to an eternal and ultimate rest with our Savior in our heavenly home. Press, push, & pursue!
Prayers & blessings,