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Wednesday, March 21, 2012

God Given Rest

As I was hoping for rest I went looking for the verse where Jesus promised rest. I went to search e-sword and the first verse on the list for “give rest” was:

And he said, My presence shall go with thee, and I will give thee rest.
Exodus 33:14
Also on the list:

Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.
Matthew 11:28
Israel was in slavery. We were in sin. God provided deliverance and rest. One meaning of rest is: A place of quiet; permanent habitation.

Another reference to God giving rest is in Isaiah. Israel was in bondage - again, as often I find myself living in bondage - again. Even bondage to sorrow and fear.

And it shall come to pass in the day that the LORD shall give thee rest from thy sorrow, and from thy fear, and from the hard bondage wherein thou wast made to serve,
Isaiah 14:3

Jesus made it clear this rest from sorrow and fear, freedom from bondage, was for all, not only Israel. It was for me. For you. 

“The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised,  To preach the acceptable year of the Lord.”  And he closed the book, and he gave it again to the minister, and sat down. And the eyes of all them that were in the synagogue were fastened on him.  And he began to say unto them, “This day is this scripture fulfilled in your ears.”
Luke 4:18-21

Sin is hard bondage – poor, brokenhearted, captive, blind, and bruised. We serve it in sorrow and fear.

That is how God found me – how I still feel some days. 
That is where I was when Jesus came to proclaim the day of rest had come.
Another definition of rest: The gospel church or new covenant state in which the people of God enjoy repose, and Christ shall be glorified.

Jesus declared the acceptable year of the Lord – good news, healing, deliverance, sight, and liberty. Rest from the bondage of sin. Rest that brings refreshing. Rest that doesn’t just give me a break from sin. Rest that settles me in a new kingdom.

God was giving Israel rest by delivering them from bondage in Egypt and settling them in a new land of promise. Jesus has delivered me from sorrow and fear, the kingdom of sin and death. He has moved me to his Kingdom to rest in his works.

God has provided this rest for you. Have you received it?
How do you get back to resting when it seems you are in bondage again?

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