A Sabbath-Rest for the People of God
1 Therefore, since the promise of entering his rest still stands, let us be careful that none of you be found to have fallen short of it.
2 For we also have had the gospel preached to us, just as they did; but the message they heard was of no value to them, because those who heard did not combine it with faith.[a]
3 Now we who have believed enter that rest, just as God has said,
“So I declared on oath in my anger,
‘They shall never enter my rest.’ “[b] And yet his work has been finished since the creation of the world.
4 For somewhere he has spoken about the seventh day in these words: “And on the seventh day God rested from all his work.”[c]
5 And again in the passage above he says, “They shall never enter my rest.”
6 It still remains that some will enter that rest, and those who formerly had the gospel preached to them did not go in, because of their disobedience.
7 Therefore God again set a certain day, calling it Today, when a long time later he spoke through David, as was said before:
“Today, if you hear his voice,
do not harden your hearts.”[d]
8 For if Joshua had given them rest, God would not have spoken later about another day.
9 There remains, then, a Sabbath-rest for the people of God;
10 for anyone who enters God’s rest also rests from his own work, just as God did from his.
11 Let us, therefore, make every effort to enter that rest, so that no one will fall by following their example of disobedience.
12 For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.
13 Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account.
Jesus the Great High Priest
14 Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has gone through the heavens,[e] Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to the faith we profess.
15 For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are-yet was without sin.
16 Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.
The Old Testament isn’t always Druids
We get hard in our hearts, we get stubborn in our hearts
Hebrews is written to a society very similar to ours, very pluralistic
These particular Christians were under great pressure to walk away from Jesus as their Messiah
We read Hebrews 3&4
Today if you hear the word of Gid, do not HARDEN YOUR HEARTS
Reminding people of the Israelites (Numbers 13/14)
David wrote about it in Psalm 95
The rest is forth-coming
If he can’t get to our hearts, he’s not doing a very good job
All of us in this room walk the fine line of drifting away from Jesus
“I don’t know if I can still believe in a God who allows these kinds of things to happen”
Seems like you make a mistake, and get no rest
The Old Testament was the readers of Hebrews bible, what they had bible studies about
Numbers 13/14 serve as a backdrop for the sermon of Hebrews
Lots of things spoken to encourage the listeners
In Numbers the Israelites have left Egypt and are at Kadesh Barnea – mouth of the land of Canaan
In slavery for 400 years
Crying out all the time, God finally delivers a savior for them – Moses
Out of slavery/sin into freedom
Performs miracles and signs
Calle out of darkness into the light
A season of freedom
Brought into it by a savior
Not long before enemy pursues us
Pressed up against this abyss (sea)
Turn to savior
Savior parts the sea, they cross, enemy defeated, burst into song
I will never doubt God again! Honest!
Today – knowing this – if you see God do miraculous things and He works great things in your life, do not let your hearts get hard
At some point, your heart will harden
What do I do now? Where is my anchor? What have I built my life on?
When things don’t line up, where does your heart go?
I want to prepare you for that
He destroys the greatest enemy we have – death
We think that the next step is entering the promised land
This inberween time – can we just get on with it
Where does my heart go in those seasons
Stuck in the middle
The inbetween time is always hard
We’re very appreciative of the sacrifice Christ made
But can we skip the waiting?
A lot of excitement when your first become a Christian
Once you cross the great divide, it’s hard to wait
No restaurant, no hamburger worth a 30 minute wait
We’re waiting for God to step in
V. 1 the promise still stands that we as followers of Jesus get to enter into His rest
He doesn’t go back on His word
If you so not know the promises of God
This is why we need these words
It’s not just for the people reading Hebrews in context – He’a talking about US!!
Sabbath rest is nice, but promise of future rest
Sabbath = training wheels
It’s all been given to us by God (family, church)
That’s what Numbers 13/14 is talking about, that promised land
So much is put on 40 day period, maybe habits get set
They spy for 40 days and say it’s all He promised, BUT there’s giants
What do you do when you see these giants?
Matt and Grace church planting in Australia, Jeami Duncan school planting in Uganda, facing peer pressure from friends, co-workers, etc
Many giants, many voices – Don’t waste your time they will say; People will make fun of you; You’ve already figured it all out
Hebrews 10:25 not neglecting to meet together
When the heart grows hard it doesn’t want to sing praises or hear the words of the Bible
If you hear His voice don’t let your heart harden
Exort one another every day as long as it is called today
To isolate yourself from the community, from other people who are trying to help
There are giants in the land
Fix your eyes on Jesus
When the report comes back and stuff looks crappy, don’t lose sight of Jesus
Great adversity will rise up
Come up alongside one another and say God won’t go back on His word
God is with us
Secret meetings behind leaderships back (in the parking lot) – discussing election of new leadership, returning to Egypt, killig the leaders
Hard hearts hate truth
Numbers 14:11 to Moses: how long will these people despise me
Despise is translated having contempt for God
He will not tolerate contempt
Don’t say “we do not believe your word, you don’t Lin
Charles Finney – 1861: when the heart gets hard….obedience will be nelected…gratitude will be withheld…
Sometimes disobedience seems inevitable
Religious affection – these are the things we feel
Remember the hardness of heart…series of small choices that resemble…it’s self justified…it dishones Him and ruins the souls of men.”
Don’t go out of here thinking you can just work harder
Think of a piece of metal that has been bent – if you try to bend it back so it is straight, it will weaken or snap – the only way to fix it is to turn up the heat THEN straighten it out
Hebrews 4:11-12 fall by the same sort of disobedience….word of God is a sword…all are naked to His eye
The only way the human heart is going to change is by turning to Jesus
Ask the Holy Spirit to examine the motives of our hearts
Let us sing and rejoice and praise
A message about freedom and hope, about finding the promise