Heb 4:9 There remaineth therefore a rest to the people of God.
Heb 4:10 For he that is entered into his rest, he also hath ceased from his own works, as God did from his.
Heb 4:11 Let us labour therefore to enter into that rest, lest any man fall after the same example of unbelief.
I have been reading and rereading the book of Hebrews this week. In my spirit I can feel that God is trying to teach me something extremely important, but can't quite get it.
This is a particularly challenging epistle for us Gentiles and how anyone could even begin to understand it without having a good knowledge of the Torah, the Books of Wisdom and the Prophets, I don't know. That being said let me try to share with you what I currently think this passage refers to.
As with much of the New Testament, we must go back to the beginning, back to Adam, for clarity and understanding.
Gen 3:19 In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground; for out of it wast thou taken: for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return.
Adam and his bride had until this time lived in paradise, Gods rest, they wanted for nothing all was provided for them and they lived in a state of innocent Joy. God had ceased creating (Gen 2:2) and was enjoying the company of his man and the rest of His creation.
Adams fall spoiled all of this and in the words of that mythical creature from C S Lewis, Aslan, "evil has entered this land...". From that day forward God began his plan of salvation, every Generation from Adam to
Moses believed that the next generation would produce the Savior that would restore that lost paradise where man could once again live in perfect harmony with God.
Then came Moses and the Law.
Moses's promises to the people of Israel, promises he had received from God, sounded like a paradise to those slaves in Egypt. God was going to give them a land flowing with milk and honey. They were going to live in houses not built with their hands , they were going to eat from crops they did not plant. The curse of Adam appeared to soon be lifted. But they did not believe. They angered God and He refused them entrance into His rest. Even their descendants rebelled and did not "all the things of God" and had to fight to possess the land and often lost it due to their rebellion. They failed to receive the promise a promise received by FAITH.
Then came the Messiah, Jesus. Jesus explained the Law and the Prophets. He taught that the Kingdom of God was within us. That it was near that it was accepted by faith, our faith. But our race failed to fully believe the message and so we wait.
The Good news is that no longer must we wait for the rest of our race to believe God, an eternal, one time payment has been meet. Our redeemer has paid Gods price for our freedom and if we can only believe God that we are free from the indentured servitude of Adam's sin of unbelief, we can experience the Joy of His Kingdom in the here and now as well as enter into His rest in the time to come after the judgment:
Heb 4:1 Let us therefore fear, lest, a promise being left us of entering into his rest, any of you should seem to come short of it.
So, what do you think, what has God taught you?
Ps I currently do not have internet while working and may miss a post now and again please forgive. I can still approve posts from my phone so please comment. I will post all non hostile comments even if you disagree.
Also, I am currently working on a New book called, "Yahweh the God Who Speaks". He spoke then and He still does today. Keep coming back, hope to have a draft ready for download and comment by June this year.