NEW SERIES: HOW TO FIND REST IN THE LORD
Ancient Israel was given a new land, (see last post), a land flowing with God’s provision, a land where they would find rest from their enemies. The weekly Sabbath was to be the physical reminder and celebration of their calling to rest in God’s supply.
However, that supply was dependant on their ability to obey the Law given to Moses. It was straight forward: obey the Law and receive the promises, disobey and forfeit. Simple.
Only it wasn’t. Because of the inherently sinful nature of man, no one could actually do it. Perhaps some of it, for some of the time, but not all of it for all of the time. And their story is the story of man’s attempt—and failure—to climb up to a holy God through obedience to external rules and regulations; the story of an attempt to please God through human effort. The story, in fact, of religion.
The Christian world is often no different, the rules and regulations just take a different form. A person’s spirituality is measured by their attendance at church services, commitment to a church programme and the daily quiet time. Non-compliance is judged, and many burnt-out Christians drop out, tired of trying so hard, disappointed and disillusioned, thinking ‘It wasn’t supposed to be like this…’
And the result? Disappointment, failure, exhaustion—or the thrill of achievement, followed by the realisation that more striving is required to maintain the exalted position.
If true rest and inner peace is found in the finished work of God (see previous posts) rather than our own efforts, then it is all summed up in the person of Jesus.
Then they asked Him, "What must we do to do the works God requires?"
"The work of God is this: to believe in the one He has sent."
That’s it, that’s the ‘work of God’. Believe in Jesus.
Believe in His day by day, moment by moment involvement in our lives. Believe in His unchanging power and glory. Believe in His all-encompassing love for us in our human frailty. Believe in His irresistible desire to transform our lives to make us like Him.
This is the key to entering rest.
Read more on 'Missing the Mark' by clicking the link.
TAKE TIME OUT looks at the relationship between Divine provision and Sabbath time…
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[Photo credits: Pireti Iver (scales); Andy Montes de Oca (pebble); John Schnobrich (laptop); @ Unsplash, with thanks]
1. A Lesson from David and Solomon: Live in Rest
2. Welcoming Jesus Christ, the Prince of Peace
3.Mighty is the Power of the Cross
4. Walking into Rest: the Journey from Judea to Galilee
5. Meeting the Risen Jesus
6. Don't Worry about Your Life: Resting in Divine Provision
7. Signposts to a Divine Encounter
Da Kraplak (type writer);
Merakist (social media)
@ Unsplash, with thanks]
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