Friday, March 1, 2013

Laboring to Enter the Rest -- Application

"Let us labour therefore to enter into that rest, lest any man fall after the same example of unbelief." (Hebrews 4: 11)

So, "the rest" is a rest from giving animal sacrifices, because Christ Jesus' final sacrifice has taken care of sin once and for all.

"Labor" would be better rendered "hurry", or "make haste", or "believe in this rest ASAP."


"14Seeing 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. 15For 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. 16Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need." (Hebrews 4: 14-16)

We have a this High Priest who is waiting to hear from us, who wants to minister to our every need.

What are you waiting for?

There are other applications regarding the rest which permits us to stop trying to earn God's favor.

First of all, all the trappings and traditions of religion are reduced to naught in the face of the final sacrifice of Jesus Christ. Men and women who go to church, who tithe, who pray to God for miracles with an attitude of doing things in order to get God to move in their lives, are only frustrating the grace of God. We can do nothing of ourselves, to begin with  (John 15: 5). Who we are, and what we do, depends entirely on His grace:

"But by the grace of God I am what I am: and his grace which was bestowed upon me was not in vain; but I laboured more abundantly than they all: yet not I, but the grace of God which was with me." (1 Corinthians 15: 10)

We do nothing out of our own strength, but we live and move and have our being in Christ, who is for us, with us, and in us. No longer do we live a life in bondage to a sense of alienation:

"And you, that were sometime alienated and enemies in your mind by wicked works, yet now hath he reconciled." (Colossians 1: 21)


"For by one offering he hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified." (Hebrews 10: 14)

This perfection refers specifically to our "conscience", one which testifies to every man that we need to be right with God:

"For then would they not have ceased to be offered? because that the worshippers once purged should have had no more conscience of sins." (Hebrews 10: 2)

So, any sense of guilt, shame, or condemnation is no longer true or relevant to the believer in Christ:

"Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus," (Romans 8:1)

This gift of "no condemnation" empowers us to live the victorious life:

"10When Jesus had lifted up himself, and saw none but the woman, he said unto her, Woman, where are those thine accusers? hath no man condemned thee? 11She said, No man, Lord. And Jesus said unto her, Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more." (John 8: 10-11)

This is the gift of grace, the unending, unmerited favor which flows in our lives, and causes us to triumph in Christ (2 Corinthians 2:14), which makes us more than conquerors in Christ (Romans 8: 37)

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