April 5, 2009

A Day of Rest

Do we really take a day of rest one day a week? Are we really engaging in a Sabbath rest (I do not mean a Saturday or a Sunday, I mean rest in the Lord). Are we engaging what He desires, what He commanded, what He laid out for our good, not His own?

We must be wholly at rest that God may work in us; we must yield our will; we must resign our heart; we must give up all our fleshly desires. In short, we must rest from all activities of our own contriving so that, having God working in us, we may repose in him...

John Calvin Institutes Of The Christian Religion 2.8.29

The Lord wants me (and you) to enter His rest. Think of the peace and calm, the serene comfort of resting in the Lord, knowing in His sovereign will, all is under His command. Can anything activity be better than that rest? Why do we go to great lengths to avoid it?

As a church, we have pretty much chosen the Lord's Day, Sunday, as the day of rest, of ceasing of normal activities, to spend time with the Lord. I say pretty much, because some follow the Saturday sabbath. I am not looking to debate it, but you can disagree with me.

However, the ancients did not substitute the Lord's Day (as we call it) for the Sabbath without careful discrimination. The purpose and fulfillment of that true rest, represented by the ancient Sabbath, lies in the Lord's resurrection. Hence, by the very day that brought the shadows to an end, Christians are warned not to cling to the shadow rite.

John Calvin Institutes Of The Christian Religion 2.8.34
Enter His rest, it is what He truly desires for us.

1Therefore, let us fear if, while a promise remains of entering His rest, any one of you may seem to have come short of it.

2For indeed we have had good news preached to us, just as they also; but the word they heard did not profit them, because it was not united by faith in those who heard.

3For we who have believed enter that rest, just as He has said,
although His works were finished from the foundation of the world.

Hebrews 4:1-3 (NASB)

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