A Wonderful Rest for the People of God

My soul finds rest in God aloneHebrews 4:9: So there is a special rest still waiting for the people of God.

Dear reader on this page you will find what I would refer to a potpourri of commentary notes, quotes, anecdotes, illustrations, poems, hymns, etc that relate to the concept of REST in the Bible. While many of the comments relate primarily to the concept of REST in Hebrews 3-4 (especially Hebrews 4, the most concentrated teaching on REST in the entire Bible), not all the material relates directly to those two chapters. The avowed purpose of this page is to present a collection of materials that relate to Biblical REST so that you the reader might have a better grasp of this great truth which God has spoken but which seems not to be widely discussed and into which we too often fail to enter. May God grant each us abundant grace to enter His rest in its full orbed glory in Christ. Amen.

For example the highly respected Old Testament scholar Walter Kaiser said it this way…

In 1933 Gerhard Von Rad aptly observed that “Among the many benefits of redemption offered to man by Holy Scripture, that of ‘rest’ has been almost overlooked in biblical theology….” Forty years have not substantially changed that assessment of the situation. In fact, except for the brief and conflicting opinions delivered in commentaries on Hebrews 3 and 4 , only a few major articles in the journals and fewer graduate theses have been devoted to the concept of “God’s Rest” in the last century. Most biblical theologies of the Old Testament and New Testament, biblical encyclopedias, theological wordbooks, Festschriften, and systematic theologies are ominously silent on the topic. (Read the entire article ONLINE – The Promise Theme and the Theology of Rest – Bibliotheca Sacra Volume 130:518, April, 1973)

Christ can make the rest of your days
Be the best of your days
If He is the Rest of your days.

For a believer’s life to make God pleasing music, music that plays on throughout eternity, one must learn to enter His appointed rest

 RESTS: 1 whole, 2 half, 3 quarter, 4 eighth, 5 sixteenth
(from Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary, 10th Ed)

Paradoxically there is no music during the 5 rests (variable length of rhythmic silence) depicted above, but there is no making of music without a rest! Beloved, in a sense our entire life is (or should be) characterized by intermittent ‘rests‘. At such times we may be led to think we have come to the end of the tune! However, God is sovereign and it is not without divine design that He writes the music of our lives which includes His rest. It is for us to learn the tune, and at the same time not ignore His times of rest. His rests are not to be omitted, for to do so would disturb the melody.  Let us remember that although there may seem to be no music in rest, there is no making of music without rest!

DEFINITION
OF REST

The following definitions are an amalgamation of descriptions from English dictionaries as well as from various theological sources.

Rest is freedom from work, toil, strain or activity. Rest is the cessation of motion or action of any kind, and applicable to any body or being, as rest from labor, rest from mental exertion or rest of body or mind. A body is at rest, when it ceases to move. The mind is at rest, when it ceases to be disturbed or agitated. The sea is never at rest! (And many believers live their lives more like the sea than their Savior!) 

Antonyms of rest include – restlessness, strain, toil, drudge, grind

Rest is cessation of work or movement in order to relax or recover strength.

Rest is freedom from anxiety or disturbance.

To rest is to dispose oneself at ease in order to relieve or avoid fatigue (cp spiritual “burnout”)

In poetry, a rest describes a short pause of the voice in reading (Can we not apply this truth to our lives?)

In spiritual terms rest means primarily to cease from one’s works with the idea of release from anxiety, worry and insecurity. This rest is offered to all and is freely available by grace through personal faith in Jesus Christ (Mt 11:28, 29, 30). Only in Christ is our soul fully and truly at rest. In this context rest means to be done with self-effort as far as salvation is concerned. It means the end of trying to please God by our feeble, fleshly works. In short, God’s unmerited perfect rest is a rest in free grace which can only be entered into or appropriated by faith.

John MacArthur adds that…

Rest also means freedom from whatever worries or disturbs you. Some people cannot rest mentally and emotionally because they are so easily annoyed. Every little nuisance upsets them and they always feel hassled. Rest does not mean freedom from all nuisances and hassles; it means freedom from being so easily bothered by them (Ed: It means freedom in the face of whatever would disturb your rest!). Rest means to be inwardly quiet, composed, peaceful. To enter God’s rest means to be at peace with God (Ro 5:1note), to possess the perfect peace He gives (Is 26:3). It means to be free from guilt and even unnecessary feelings of guilt. It means freedom from worry about sin, because sin is forgiven. God’s rest is the end of legalistic works and the experience of peace in the total forgiveness of God.

Rest can mean to lie down, be settled, fixed, secure. There is no more shifting about in frustration from one thing to another, no more running in circles. In God’s rest we are forever established in Christ. We are freed from running from philosophy to philosophy, from religion to religion, from life-style to life-style (Jn 8:36). We are freed from being tossed about by every doctrinal wind, every idea or fad, that blows our way. In Christ, we are established, rooted, grounded, unmoveable (Col 2:7note). That is the Christian’s rest.

Rest involves remaining confident, keeping trust. In other words, to rest in something or someone means to maintain our confidence in it or him. To enter God’s rest, therefore, means to enjoy the perfect, unshakeable confidence of salvation in our Lord. We have no more reason to fear. We have absolute trust and confidence in God’s power and care.

Rest also means to lean on (Ed: Play Leaning on the Everlasting Arms). To enter into God’s rest means that for the remainder of our lives and for all eternity we can lean on God. We can be sure that He will never fail to support us. In the new relationship with God, we can depend on Him for everything and in everything-for support, for health, for strength, for all we need. It is a relationship in which we are confident and secure that we have committed our life to God and that He holds it in perfect, eternal love. It is a relationship that involves being settled and fixed. No more floating around. We know whom we have believed and we stand in Him. (MacArthur, John: Hebrews. Moody Press)

Know Christ and you will know rest.
No Christ and there will be no rest!
…In this life or the one to come!

Relation of rest to refreshment: Rest was built into the natural rhythms of life by the Creator, Who Himself rested on the seventh day of creation (Ge 2:1, 2, 3). The rest of God includes the crucial element of refreshment. Exodus 31:17tells us that God not only rested on the seventh day but also “was refreshed” (Hebrew = napas = renewal of energy of mind and body, Lxx = katapauo = to put to an end, give rest to) (Cp “refresh” in Ex 23:12, Pr 25:13, Ro 15:30, 31, 32note, [Do others find refreshing rest in your company beloved? cp 1Co 16:17, 18, 2Co 7:13, 2Ti 1:16note, Philemon 7, 20] Acts 3:19, 20 [Where {Who} does true refreshment come from? What must we do to enter the times of refreshing?], Je 31:25NIV, Pr 3:7, 8 [fear of the LORD causes us to turn from evil and brings refreshment to our bones! Beloved, if you are reading this and sensing a deep “inner gnawing”, perhaps God is calling you to an attitude of reverential fear which might prompt you to turn away from evil and experience His refreshing!] 1Sa 16:14, 23 = “evil spirit”, ponder the power of God glorifying, Christ exalting, Word centered spiritual music to refresh! Does your time in worship yield such “times of refreshing”? Why not?). 

MacArthur

God’s rest is not essentially physical at all. Certainly, resting in God and trusting in His promises can relieve us of nervousness, tenseness, and other physical problems. But these are by-products of His rest. Many cults promise their followers happiness, wealth, and health in this life. The Bible does not. The rest God promises is spiritual, not physical. Whatever physical or earthly benefits the Lord may give us, His basic promise is to give us spiritual rest, spiritual blessing. Some of God’s most faithful believers are the busiest, the hardest working, and sometimes even the most afflicted people imaginable. Yet they are in God’s salvation rest. (Ibid)

Rest and the Redeemer (cp 1Cor 11:1, cp He 6:11, 12note): Despite the fact that Jesus knew His time on earth was short and therefore very precious, He redeemed (cp Ep 5:16KJVnote) some of this precious time for rest and refreshment from His active life (Mk 6:45, 46, 47; Lk 6:12; 9:28). He also prescribed a similar pattern for His disciples (Mk 6:31see devotional). Are you following His example? Or is your life so hectic that you are failing to take time to come away by yourself and rest in Him and His Word?  One wonders what the failure to heed our Lord’s wise counsel has to do with the veritable epidemic of “spiritual burnout” in modern day evangelicalism?

Many have a misunderstanding of rest, which in Scripture is not synonymous with inactivity per se. Yes, God rested on the seventh day from His work of creation, but thankfully He continued (and continues) to be active in providentially sustaining all that He has created. As Jesus taught “My Father is working (present tense = continually) until now, and I myself am working (present tense = continually)” (Jn 5:17). The point is that believer’s rest into His rest (see “My rest” inPs 95:11, He 3:11note, He 4:3, 5note) not be a state of uneventful inertia and inactivity. Even as God is dynamic and not static, so also is His rest which believers are called to enter (Today!). Although entering His rest in Hebrews 3-4 (He 3:11note, He 3:18, 19note, He 4:1note, He 4:3, 45note, He 4:89, 10note, He 4:11note) is primarily a call (for diligence – He 4:11) to enter His rest of salvation (justification, past tense salvation – see Three Tenses of Salvation), the application of this truth is that believers need to daily enter into His rest, experiencing communion with the One Who is the Source and Essence of rest, so that our souls are “re-energized”, refreshed and satisfied in Him (Mt 11:28, 29, 30). Ponder the words of Frances R Havergal’s beautiful hymn Like a River Glorious (click to play and ask yourself what brings “perfect peace and rest”?)

Like a river glorious, is God’s perfect peace,
Over all victorious, in its bright increase;
Perfect, yet it floweth, fuller every day,
Perfect, yet it groweth, deeper all the way.

Refrain
Stayed upon Jehovah, hearts are fully blest
Finding, as He promised, perfect peace and
REST.

Hidden in the hollow of His blessed hand,
Never foe can follow, never traitor stand;
Not a surge of worry, not a shade of care,
Not a blast of hurry touch the spirit there.
Refrain

Every joy or trial falleth from above,
Traced upon our dial by the Sun of Love;
We may trust Him fully all for us to do.
They who trust Him wholly find Him wholly true.
Refrain

SOME SCRIPTURES
ON REST

The concept of rest has special meaning in Scripture for God is said to rest from His creative activity on the seventh day (Ge 2:2, 3) and the Sabbath as instituted for Israel was to be a day of rest (Ex 31:15).  The Promised Land was to be allowed to rest every seventh year (Lev 25:4). The temple was to be the Lord’s resting place among His people (1Chr 28:2; Ps 132:8, 14). Below are a few select Scriptures (some with commentary) that deal with various aspects of God’s rest as it applies to believers today.

In the OT the concept of rest often meant rest  from war as in several of the following passages. Notice that in Judges the land rested while the judge was alive (cp Jdg 3:11note, Jdg 3:30note, Jdg 5:31note, Jdg 8:28note), suggesting that when there was a degree of order and authority and righteousness, the Lord gave the land and its people rest. Can we not apply that to our lives as NT believers? Do we not experience a sense of calm and absence of war when we are walking in righteousness, godliness and holiness when God is “on the throne” of our lives? And conversely, when we reject God’s authority, do we not experience internal and often external (in the form for example of the disciplining hand of Jehovah) war in our spiritual lives? May God  strengthen each of us with His Spirit in our inner man that we might be empowered by His grace to walk in holiness, so that we might experience His rest and peace in our lives. Amen.

Joshua 11:23 So Joshua took the whole land, according to all that the Lord had spoken to Moses, and Joshua gave it for an inheritance to Israel according to their divisions by their tribes. Thus the land had rest (Heb = shaqat; Lxx =katapauo) from war.

Comment: Joshua 11:23 is a key verse in the book of Joshua. The idea here is that Joshua brought rest for Israel as a nation from external enemies, a thought repeated in Joshua 14:15 (where “rest” = Heb = shaqat; Lxx = kopazo = to abate, stop, cease as of the wind  Mt 14:32). Specifically the conquests of Joshua had brought about rest in the sense that the major battles to secure the land had been waged and won against the pagan kings, but there were still additional internal battles which would be necessary to fully drive out the pagan inhabitants (note God’s instruction called for utter destruction of the pagan peoples and their evil influences – see Dt 7:1, 2, 3), something most of the tribes of Israel did not fully accomplish much to their dismay and detriment (e.g., read Jdg 1:19, 21, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 [see notes] – observe the repetitive phrases synonymous with “did not drive out” – which also helps to explain how Joshua 11:23 does not contradict Joshua 13:1, which surely describes the land each tribe was to possess by driving out the inhabitants, a command most of the tribes disobeyed) To summarize, there was a general national external “rest” externally but internal enemies remained.

David Guzik commenting on Joshua 11:23: The end of this phase of conquest was a greater invitation to the cooperation of the tribes with God. (Quoting Alan Redpath) “Much territory was yet to be possessed, but it was left to each tribe to possess what potentially it had received through the conquest of the whole people in which it had taken part. Each tribe was to apply individually the lessons it had learned in united war if it was to possess its inheritance. That the tribes failed to do so was not a reflection on the power of God, but on the failure to take for themselves what Joshua had given and allotted to each one of them.” In the same sense, Jesus has already defeated the enemy and conquered the land, but He also calls us into battle to gain what is ours. Are there “Canaanites” in your life which are disturbing your “rest”?

Judges 3:11note  Then the land had rest (Heb = shaqat; Lxx = esuchazo = to keep quiet, rest as in Lk 23:56) forty years. And Othniel the son of Kenaz died. (The Hebrew word shaqat or “rest” is translated “undisturbed” in Jdg 3:30note,Jdg 5:31note, Jdg 8:28note, all referring to a time of rest for Israel from external enemies, cp same idea in of a country [or city] undisturbed and at rest – 2Chr 14:1, 5, 6, 20:30, 23:21)

Judges 8:28note So Midian was subdued before the sons of Israel, and they did not lift up their heads anymore. And the land was undisturbed for forty years in the days of Gideon.

Shaqat – to be still, quiet or undisturbed. It means to be inactive. To be in a state of tranquility, in the above passages this “rest” being the result of the absence of war, during which the land experiences a sense of safety and security. InRu 3:18note it describes the Kinsman Redeemer Boaz who would not rest until he had accomplished what he had promised Ruth (cf Ru 3:13note). Scripture declares that righteousness brings true security and tranquility (Is 32:17); but also warns of the false security that comes to the unrighteous (Ezek 16:49). Isaiah 57:20 gives a great word picture of the meaning of shaqat in the description of wicked people who are like “the tossing sea” which ” cannot be quiet(shaqat; Lxx = anapauo)”. Jer 30:10 refers to the “quiet” (shaqat = “undisturbed” in similar context of Je 46:27) Israel will experience in the future when the Messiah saves them. Jehovah predicts He will be “pacified” (shaqat) in the future (Ezek 16:42)

Isaiah 14:7 “The whole earth is at rest (nuach; Lxx = anapauo)  and is quiet (shaqat); They break forth into shouts of joy.

Comment: The fact that Isaiah specifies “the whole earth” identifies this verse is a prophecy that has not yet been fulfilled, but which will be fulfilled in the millennium. The fact that there will be rest and quiet during this period supports the premise that one component of the future rest (see discussion below) God promises includes the glorious millennial reign of Christ. Dr. John Walvoord commenting on this verse states that

The oppression of Babylon will end in the time of millennial peace. (Walvoord, J. F. The Prophecy Knowledge Handbook. Wheaton, Ill.: Victor Books)

Isaiah 62:1  For Zion’s sake I will not keep silent, and for Jerusalem’s sake I will not keep quiet (Hebrew = shaqat), until (time phrase – what follows has not yet been fulfilled so it is yet future) her righteousness goes forth like brightness, and her salvation like a torch that is burning.

Comment: In Isaiah 62:1 God says He will not “keep quiet” or rest until He accomplishes His intended purpose for Zion, which ultimately speaks of her redemption at the end of the Great Tribulation, which is terminated abruptly and gloriously by the return of the Messiah (cp Ro 11:26, 27notes; see also the Second Coming), the event that marks the coronation of Jesus Christ as the King of kings and the inception of His 1000 year earthly Millennial Reign from His capital city, Jerusalem (Zion). For Zion’s sake and base on His covenant promises to Abraham (especially the promise of land), God will finally bring righteousness (cp “bring in everlasting righteousness” Da 9:24note) and peace and real rest to the land of Israel!

Commenting on Isaiah 60:1-22 Dr John Walvoord explains that…

God’s future redemption of Israel will bring a glorious future. The glory will come from God Himself, and the nations will respond and come to the light (Is 60:1, 2, 3). The wealth of the world will accrue to them (Is 60:4, 5, 6, 7). Herds of camels will cover the land (Is 60:6) and abundant offerings will be offered on the altar (Is 60:7). These predictions have not been fulfilled in history and anticipate the future Millennial Kingdom. (Walvoord, J. F. The Prophecy Knowledge Handbook. Wheaton, Ill.: Victor Books) (Bolding added)

Jeremiah 6:16 Thus says Jehovah, “Stand (a command not a suggestion) by the ways and see and ask (command) for the ancient paths, where the good way is, and walk in it; and you will find rest (Hebrew = margowa) for your souls. But they said, ‘We will not walk in it (cp He 3:18, 19).’

Comment: The Septuagint (LXX) translates this unique Hebrew noun margowa with the noun hagnismos which means purification, as when one makes something ritually acceptable or generally the process of being morally purified. The context of this passage indicates that “soul rest” is found in paying attention to the paths Jehovah has set out from ancient times, giving us timeless instructions on how we should walk and then we choosing to walk in that way. The implication is that [1] we must know these old paths and which implies we must study His Word and [2] we must trust and obey that His path is best and we will experience the soul blessing of His rest.

Jeremiah 31:2 Thus says the LORD, “The people who survived the sword Found grace in the wilderness– Israel, when it went to find its rest.” (Read context – Note God’s motivation for fulfilling this promise of future rest to Israel – Jer 31:1,2, 3, 4, 5, 6, especially Jer 31:3, compare also Je 30:24 with Je 31:1)

John Walvoord comments: “Following the rapture of the church, Jesus Christ will return to minister once again to His chosen nation, Israel. He will give the nation physical and spiritual rest during the Millennium.”  (Ed: As promised here through His prophet  Jeremiah. (Theological Wordbook)

Thomas Constable has an interesting note: When the Israelites would seek rest from the attacks of their enemies (cf. 6:16; Ex 33:14; Dt. 3:20; Josh 1:13, 15; 22:4; Is 63:14), they would find it in the wilderness (cf. Je 2:2; Rev. 12:14,15, 16). They will find refuge in the wilderness in the Tribulation, as they did following the Exodus (cf. Ex 14:5-23; 33:14; Nu 14:20). But Israel’s ultimate rest will occur in the Millennium when they rest in the Promised Land. (Constable Notes and Commentary)

KJV Bible Commentary: Jeremiah 31:1 continues the general theme of the glorious hope of a restored Israel and the establishment of a new covenant with them. The covenant to Abraham (cf. Gen 17:7) will finally be realized when God is God of all the families of Israel (Jer 31:1) (Dobson, E G, Charles Feinberg, E Hindson, Woodrow Kroll, H L. Wilmington: KJV Bible Commentary: Nelson or Logos)

Isaiah 30:15 For thus the Lord God, the Holy One of Israel, has said, “In repentance (Note the order – What does this signify? What must we do to effect God’s rest?) and rest (Hebrew = nahat = calmness, quietness, freedom from oppression or strife, also used in Pr 29:9, Ec 4:6, 6:5, 9:17) you will be saved, in quietness (Hebrew = shaqat) and trust (faith in God and His trustworthy Word of Truth) is your strength.” But (This word of contrast always marks a “change of direction” of thought, etc) you were not willing (not positively inclined, not yielding).

Isaiah 32:17 And the work of righteousness will be peace, and the service of righteousness, quietness (shaqat – calmness, rest; Lxx = anapausis = cessation) and confidence forever.

Psalm 37:7 Rest (command to rest! Hebrew = damam = to be silent or still) in Jehovah and wait (command) patiently for Him. Do not fret because of him who prospers in his way, because of the man who carries out wicked schemes.

Spurgeon: Rest in the LORD. Rest in the Lord. What? Where? When? Why? How? This…is a most divine precept, and requires much grace to carry it out. To hush the spirit, to be silent before the Lord, to wait in holy patience the time for clearing up the difficulties of Providence — that is what every gracious heart should aim at. “Aaron held his peace (Heb = damam)” (Lv 10:3KJV) “I opened not my mouth, because thou didst it.” (Ps 39:9KJV) A silent tongue in many cases not only shows a wise head, but a holy heart. And wait patiently for Him. Time is nothing to him; let it be nothing to thee. God is worth waiting for. “He never is before His time, He never is too late.” In a story we wait for the end to clear up the plot; we ought not to prejudge the great drama of life, but stay till the closing scene, and see to what a finis the whole arrives. Fret not thyself because of him who prospers in his way, because of the man who brings wicked devices to pass. There is no good, but much evil, in worrying your heart about the present success of graceless plotters: be not enticed into premature judgments — they dishonour God, they weary yourself. Determine, let the wicked succeed as they may, that you will treat the matter with indifference, and never allow a question to be raised as to the righteousness and goodness of the Lord. What if wicked devices succeed and your own plans are defeated! there is more of the love of God in your defeats than in the successes of the wicked.

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James Hervey: Rest in the LORD, and wait patiently for Him. There are two words in the original, which express the privilege and the duty of resting on Christ: one implies such a state of acquiescence, as silences the clamors of conscience, and composes the perturbation (disturbance, disorder, uneasiness, anxiety) of the spirit; the other signifies the refreshment and repose of a weary pilgrim, when he arrives at the end of his journey, and is settled for life in a secure, commodious, plentiful habitation.

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James D. Burns :Take the case of one who, with a load above his strength, has been toiling some steep and broken path, when suddenly he finds it lifted off and transferred to another whose strength he knows to be more than equal to the task, and in whose sympathy he can securely trust. What would his feeling be but one of perfect rest, and calm reliance, and joyous freedom, as they went on their way together? And such is the blessedness of rolling our care upon the LORD — in weakness we are resting on superior strength (cp 2Co 12:9note, 2Co 12:10note), in perplexity and doubt we are resting on superior wisdom, in all times of trial and hard service we can stay ourselves on the assurance of his perfect sympathy. The literal meaning of the word rest, is be silent towards the LORD. With the eye fixed on Him let all unbelieving thoughts be stilled, such thoughts as rise and rankle in the querulous spirit when it sees only its troubles, and not God in them, when the mists of earth hide from its sight the eternal stars of heaven. Then like Jacob, it may say morosely, “All these things are against me” (Ge 42:36) or, like Elijah, despondently, “It is enough now, O Lord, take away my life” (1Ki 19:4) or, like Jonah, fretfully, “I do well to be angry.” (Jonah 4:9KJV) In regard to all such dark and unbelieving suggestions, the heart is to keep silence, to be still and know that He is God (Ps 46:10); silent as to murmuring (Php 2:14KJVnote), but not silent as to prayer, for in that holy meditative stillness the heart turns to commune with him. What is “resting in God,” but the instinctive movement and upward glance of the spirit to Him; the confiding all one’s griefs and fears to Him, and feeling strengthened, patient, hopeful in the act of doing so! It implies a willingness that He should choose for us, a conviction that the ordering of all that concerns us is safer in His hands than in our own.

A few practical remarks: (1) Our “resting patiently” in the Lord applies only to the trials which He sends, not to the troubles which even Christians often make for themselves. There is a difference in the burdens that come in the way of duty, and those that come through our wandering into other ways. We can roll the one upon the Lord, but with the other our punishment may be to be left to bear them long, and to be bruised in bearing them.  (2) The duty here enjoined is to be carried through all our life. We all admit that patient waiting is needed for the great trials of life, but may not acknowledge so readily that it is needed as much for little, daily, commonplace vexations. But these are as much a test of Christian principle as the other. (3) This resting in God is a criterion of a man’s spiritual state. It needs a special faculty of discernment, a new sense to be opened in the soul, before our fallen nature can understand or desire it.

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James Smith: Rest in the Lord.

(1) Rest in the will of God, for whatever he wills is for your good, your highest good.

(2) Rest in the love of God, and often meditate on the words of Jesus on this point, “Thou hast loved them as Thou hast loved me.” (Jn 17:23)

(3) Rest in the mercy of God.

(4) Rest in the word of God.

(5) Rest in the relation thy God fills to thee; He is the Father.

(6) Rest in the LORD as he is manifested in Jesus, thy God in covenant.

NEW TESTAMENT
WORDS FOR “REST”

See the following word studies for more detail…

1) Rest (373) (anapauo [word study] from ana = again, back, or even as intensifying the meaning of the verb + pauo = to cease or give rest)  means (1)  to cause someone to gain relief, refreshment, intermission from toil  from toil (Lxx use = 1Chr 22:18, Mt 11:28, 1Co 16:18, 2Co 7:13, Philemon 1:7, 20) (2) in the middle voice meaning to take bodily rest, as in sleep (Mt 26:45, Mk 14:41, 6:31 Septuagint – LXX use = Ex 23:12) and (3) to rest upon an object in context referring to the Spirit of the Glory, even the Spirit of God, resting with refreshing power upon the suffering child of God, causing him or her to live a life which pleases God and toward which the world hurls its venom and hate. (1Pe 4:14note).

When we’re discouraged spiritually
And fear and doubt assail our soul,
We may just need to rest awhile
Before God heals and makes us whole
-Sper

2) Rest (373) (anapausis [word study] from from ana = again, back, or even as intensifying the meaning of the verb + pauo = to cease or give rest) describes a cessation of any motion, business or labor in which one is engaged. In short one meaning of anapausis is to stop an activity (cp Re 4:8 of not stopping praising God). Jesus offers us a rest that comes from inner tranquility (Mt 11:29).

3) Rest (2664) (katapauo [word study] from kata = down, here intensifying the meaning of + pauo = make to cease) means to cause to cease some activity (resulting in a period of rest), to make quite, to cause to be at rest, to grant rest. There is one NT use with the nuance of to restrain (Acts 14:18). Note that the verb anapauo can mean to rest inwardly, but not necessarily from a cessation of work as is expressed by katapauo [word study].

4) Rest (2663) (katapausis [word study] from katá = intensifies or “down” conveying sense of  permanency + paúo = make to cease) describes literally a ceasing from one’s work or activity. Thayer cites a use in the active sense of a putting to rest as used in the sentence “a calming of the winds”. Metaphorically as used in the present verse, katapausis speaks of the spiritual fulfillment God provides for His people.

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REST MODELED
BY THE FATHER
AND THE SON

God set the pattern for taking rest when “on the seventh day…He rested from all the work of creating that he had done” (Ge 2:2,3). Clearly God is omnipotent (Ge17:1; 35:11) and it follows that His rest was not the result of being worn out or tired. In fact His rest was associated with the completion of a task (with each day’s “work” God concluded “it was good” – Ge 1:10, 12, 18, 21, 25, 31). God’s rest is a picture and a model given to us that we might understand our need for physical rest every seventh day (Ex 16:23, 24, 25, 26; 20:8, 9, 10, 11; Lv 23:3; Dt. 5:12, 13, 14, 15). It is also worth noting that God created the cycle of light and darkness to provide for daily rest for man as well as for all His creation (Ge 1:14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19). How are you resting in these tumultuous times? Stay close to Christ and the promises of God in His Word so that your soul might enter His rest daily and weekly.

Jesus, fully God and fully Man, experienced the need for physical rest and modeled the satisfying of this need. For example, He rested by the well at Sychar in Samaria while His disciples went to buy food (Jn 4:4, 5, 6), and He fell asleep in a boat crossing the Sea of Galilee (Mk 4:38; Luke 8:22, 23Beloved, you may feel like you are in a “boat” being storm tossed, but if you enter His rest, rest assured, you can rest in Christ!). When Jesus and His disciples were pressed by the crowds, He exhorted them to “Come with Me by yourselves to a quiet place and get some rest” (Mk 6:31). It follows that physical rest is a divinely ordained human need which we must heed lest we burn ourselves out in ministry or any other human endeavor.

It is interesting to observe that Scripture also speaks of physical death as rest. And thus we read of Jacob’s request  instructed Joseph not to bury him in Egypt: “When I rest (Lxx = koimao = fall asleep, cp 1Ki 11:43, 1Th 4:14note) with my fathers, carry me out of Egypt and bury me where they are buried” (Ge 47:29, Ge 47:30NIV). God told Moses on the east side of the Jordan River, “You are going to rest (Dt 31:16KJV = “sleep”; Lxx = koimao = fall asleep) with your fathers” (Dt. 31:16). David’s death was similarly described (2Sa 7:12 ; 1Ki 1:21 – both passages in the Lxx = koimao = fall asleep), and Job spoke of the “sleep of death” as rest (Job 3:13, 17 – rest = Hebrew nuach; Lxx = anapauo). Beloved, does not this sure hope of future rest in Christ not buoyed your heart that is so often made downcast and despairing by the heavy load of the variegated toils and afflictions you daily experience?! “Rest” in this truth and let it encourage and refresh your soul.

Scripture also uses the word rest to speak of the freedom from external turmoil and warfare. God through Moses promised after they entered the Land of Canaan, God “will give you rest from all your enemies” (Dt. 12:10; 25:19; Josh 1:13). When Joshua “took the entire land” and “gave it as an, inheritance to Israel according to their tribal divisions…the land had rest from war” (Josh 11:23, 24; 23:1). Although King David was a warrior, God gave him “rest (Hebrew = nuach = to pause, not only absence of movement but being settled in a particular place with overtones of finality, or of victory, salvation, etc) from all his enemies around him” (2Sa 7:1). Similarly, God gave rest to Asa (2Chr 14:6, 7; 15:15), to Jehoshaphat (2Chr 20:30), and to Nehemiah (Neh 9:28). It should not go without our notice that God gave rest in each of the above situations when the principal recipients were obedient. Obedience (ultimately an act of faith) brings forth the peaceful fruit of His supernatural rest. Are you experiencing His rest today? If not, is there any act(s) of disobedience you need to confess and from which you need to repent? If so, beloved, don’t delay. Today if you hear His voice, enter the soul satisfying quietness and rest of restored fellowship and communion in Christ!

Rest is also used to speak of peace in the personal sense as we see in Job’s perplexity about his difficult experiences writing, “I am not at ease, nor am I quiet (shaqat = to be quiet, undisturbed, calm, at rest), and I am not at rest (Job 3:13,17 – rest = Hebrew nuach; Lxx = anapauo), but turmoil (agitation, raging, trouble, trembling) comes.” (Job 3:26). After Ruth reported to Naomi on Boaz’s gift and words in the field, Naomi said that Boaz would not rest (he would not have an inner peace) “until the matter is settled today” (Ruth 3:18note). In the psalms we read “Return to your rest (Heb = manoach = resting place, repose; Lxx = anapausis) O my soul, for the LORD has dealt bountifully (Ps 13:6) with you.” (Ps 116:7). Spurgeon commenting on the psalmist’s rest writes…

He calls the rest still his own, and feels full liberty to return to it. What a mercy it is that even if our soul has left its rest for a while we can tell it — “it is thy rest still.” The Psalmist had evidently been somewhat disturbed in mind, his troubles had ruffled his spirit but now with a sense of answered prayer upon him he quiets his soul. He had rested before, for he knew the blessed repose of faith, and therefore he returns to the God who had been the refuge of his soul in former days. Even as a bird flies to its nest, so does his soul fly to his God. Whenever a child of God even for a moment loses his peace of mind, he should be concerned to find it again, not by seeking it in the world or in his own experience, but in the Lord alone. When the believer prays, and the Lord inclines his ear, the road to the old rest is before him, let him not be slow to follow it. (Ed: Beloved, if you are outside of God’s supernatural rest today, your inner peace being greatly disturbed by distressing circumstances and/or “dysfunctional” people, may God grant you the grace to “preach” Ps 116:7 to your soul (cp Jer 6:16see note above)), trusting not in mind over matter but in the supernatural working of the Spirit to strengthen and sustain your inner man as you rest in Him.)

Such spiritual peace as a result of faith in Jesus Christ and God the Father is what the Lord Jesus was offering when He said, “Come unto me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me … and you will find rest for your souls” (Mt. 11:28, 29, 30)

As we labor for Christ and the glory of God,
May we also learn to rest in Christ and the grace of God.

As alluded to elsewhere in these notes Israel’s promised physical rest (especially rest from war, from external disturbances) in Canaan, was illustrative and symbolic of spiritual salvation found only in Christ by grace through faith. The only way any individual, Jew or Gentile, can find spiritual rest is through confessing Christ Jesus as Lord and Savior (Ro 10:9, 10).

REST TODAY
A LIFE…
NOT A LAND!

When the writer of Hebrews describes the rest available to Israel in the OT, He is referring primarily to a land, the land of Canaan, the promised land of milk and honey (Nu 13:27, 14:8). The promised land is considered by many interpreters to be an earthly picture of what Jesus offers in the NT in the form of a spiritual (and physical) kingdom (cp Col 2:17note). And so in the NT “rest” refers primarily to the promise of a life (in Christ, cp Col 2:3note, Ep 1:3note) and not to the promise of a land.

Some of the readers of epistle to the Hebrews were “leaning toward” Christianity or perhaps had even professed a belief in the Messiah, but had not yet expressed saving faith. This conclusion is based in part on the author’s use of the conditional “if’s“, which introduce the subjunctive mood (the mood of probability – cp He 3:6, 7note, He 3:14note, He 4:7, 8note), and also upon the warning passages in Hebrews such as in Hebrews 2:1-4 warning against neglect andHebrews 3:7-4:13 warning against unbelief, etc.

To what event does the “40 years” refer to in Hebrews 3:9note and Hebrews 3:17note? (cp Nu 13:25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, Nu 14:11, 22, 23) The majority of the spies (10 out of 12, all except Joshua and Caleb) who went into Canaan “looked at their circumstances” (Nu 13:32, 33 – note the effect Nu 14:1, 2) instead of keeping their eyes on the promise of God (or better “the God of the promises”!) which Moses recorded in Nu 13:2

“The land of Canaan which I am going to give to the sons of Israel” (Nu 13:2

When Israel took their eyes off of God and His trustworthy promises (cp 2Pe 1:4note), their faith began to turn to fear (as it always does!) And then they provoked God so that they were denied the very thing that He had initially promised but which was to be obtained only by faith, faith that obeys. The majority decision not to go into the land was evidence of Israel’s disbelief and disobedience (Heb 3:18, 19note). Their failure to believe was not ignorance but stubbornness and thus they were refused rest, instead wandering for 40 years in the wilderness.

What are the lessons we can learn from Hebrews 3-4?

1). We must receive the promise of God’s rest while it is still time: “Promise remains” is present passive meaning “caused to remain” but when God decides the time is over, it is over.

Why fear? “Fear” in Heb 4:1 is aorist passive meaning because of what happened to Israel, take this to heart and let it cause you to tremble. This is not a reference to “reverential fear” but to a trembling fear that one might miss God’s promised rest of salvation! This is a serious passage.
Dear reader, have you heard over and over what God has said about entering His rest of salvation by grace through faith in Christ and yet you have never heeded and embraced Christ (Mt 11:28, 29, 30)? Then you are that very “one” in the phrase “any one of you” in Hebrews 4:1 who has come short of God’s promised rest! Peter exhorted his readers (and by application all readers) to make sure of their calling and election (2Pe 1:10note). The writer is saying that if you have failed to come in, the promise still remains, so enter in by faith. The writer is speaking to first century Hebrews  readers who were wavering, perhaps professing the Messiah, but not yet truly believing in and possessing Messiah as the One Who brings the promise of rest, in the case of salvation, a rest from works carried out in an attempt to merit salvation. By way of application this same promise of the rest of salvation in Christ remains available to any unsaved sinner who reads this epistle. Paul would echo the urgency of the invitation to come on in declaring “now is “THE ACCEPTABLE TIME,” behold, now is ‘THE DAY OF SALVATION'” (2Co 6:2, quoting Isa 49:8).

Now is the time; He bends His ear,
And waits for your request;
Come, lest He rouse His wrath and swear,
“Ye shall not see My rest.”

(Sing to the Lord Jehovah’s Name – Isaac Watts 1719)

In Hebrews 4:1 the phrase “seem to have come short” (He 4:1KJV) means to essentially to be found to come short. The same verb hustereo is used by Paul in Ro 3:23 (“all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God”). When you “fall short” of something, you can miss it an inch or a mile, but you still miss it! So those in Ro 3:23note have missed God’s glory by a “mile”. There are others who have missed it by only an “inch”. E.g., the man in Mk 10:21 (context = Mk 10:17,18, 19, 20, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27)

Looking at him, Jesus felt a love for him and said to him, “One thing you lack: go and sell all you possess and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me.”

Jesus was telling the man in Mk 10:17 that in essence “you are coming short in just one thing”! Isn’t it amazing how some people can come so close…they’re in a good church, they know verses in the Bible, they have heard the gospel proclaimed clearly, they’re “good” people, and yet still, they lack one thing…they have never confessed Jesus as Lord and Savior of their life (Ro 10:9, 10note) and never entered into His salvation rest!

Lord, I Believe a Rest Remains
by Charles Wesley, 1740

Lord, I believe a rest remains
To all Thy people known,
A rest where pure enjoyment reigns,
And Thou art loved alone.

A rest where all our soul’s desire
Is fixed on things above;
Where fear, and sin, and grief expire,
Cast out by perfect love.

O that I now the rest might know,
Believe, and enter in!
Now, Savior, now the power bestow,
And let me cease from sin.

Remove this hardness from my heart,
This unbelief remove:
To me the rest of faith impart,
The Sabbath of Thy love.

When you come so close and yet are still short, you might be so deceived (almost like a vaccination gives you an attenuated virus, so you cannot catch the real thing! Many persons I fear are “vaccinated” and have never experienced the “real thing”!) and think that you have truly entered into Christ’s rest, and this is why it is so important for us to continue to encourage one another daily while there is still time (cp He 3:13note). Coming to Bible study means nothing if Christ is not in your heart (although one of the best places to meet Him of course is in the study of His Word!). You can know a lot in your head but the real issue is to make certain of your calling and election. Many will say to Jesus in that day “Lord, Lord” but He will say “I never knew you.” (Mt 7:21note, Mt 7:22note). Many have and will continue to come so close to salvation and yet miss Christ by a mile (and an eternity!), for they never really knew Him as proven by the fact that they have never experienced a indisputable “before/after” change in their conduct or lifestyle! (cp 2Co 13:5)

2). God has a way for us to enter His rest:

First you must hear (Heb 4:2note…have had good news preached). When you hear Ro 10:17note occurs so that when God’s word is spoken to my heart, faith is energized. We have to respond, to believe, to be fully persuaded to the point that I am willing to wholly commit. Jesus explained this truth to Nicodemus…it’s not enough to “know’ but you must “believe”. Faith comes from hearing. What is the response? Mt 16:24 Jesus said “”If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross and follow Me.” We come on His terms not ours. The fullest expression of faith is obedience. James says that if you say you have faith, show me your works. You don’t get saved by works but the works prove that you are saved. When you hear, faith is energized but one still has to respond to what God said. “United” in He 4:2note describes the “mixing” of that faith in an inseparable union.

3). We must humbly receive His rest:

“Enter that rest” is present tense expressing the idea that we continue to enter that rest and middle voice is our own choice. So the rest of God does not cease when you enter into salvation.

“Finished” = we entered into something that was a finished work from the foundation of the world…all that was necessary has been provided. But you never find a person who has entered into the rest of God who goes around bragging about it. Ps 40 describes a man in miry clay (which was to keep the animals from getting out and the harder they tried to get out, the deeper they sank). We are like that helpless animal, crying out from our helpless estate and He inclined His ear unto us and delivered us from the miry clay, setting our feet upon the rock, placing a new song in our heart. A true realization of the sovereignty of God in salvation and the fact that you have just become a part of His plan humbles the person who has just become a part of His finished work.

Man was made to enjoy His rest: Genesis 1:24-31: describes God’s creation activity on the 6th Day.

Genesis 2:1-2 Thus the heavens and the earth were completed, and all their hosts. 2 And by the seventh day God completed His work which He had done; and He rested on the seventh day from all His work which He had done.

Comment: “Rested” is the Hebrew verb shabath or shavath [07673]  to repose, (intrans.) to desist from exertion, cease, leave off (Job 32:1; Je 31:36; Hos 7:4), rest; to come to an end; to keep or celebrate the Sabbath (Lv 23:32, a cognate acc. construction), observe the sacred day (considered by some a homophonous root); to be ended, (trans.) to sever; to put an end to (war, Ps 46:9; contention, Pr 18:18), have an end (Ge 8:22; Is. 24:8; Lam 5:15); to destroy; to cause to rest, let rest; to bring to an end, abolish; to cease to exist (Je 31:36), to remove, take away (Ex. 12:15; Lv 26:6; Ps 119:119; Is 30:11; Jer 7:34; Ezek 23:27, 48; 30:13; 34:25). The primary idea of shavath appears to be to sit down or to sit still. It describes men (Ex. 23:12; 34:21) and land which lies fallow (Lv 26:34, 35 cf. Lv 25:2).

Shabath is the opposite of laboring or toiling (Ge 2:2, 3; Ex 31:17). The traveler rests (abstains) from traveling (Is. 33:8). The elders rested from the gate (i.e., did not go to the forum to the Sabbath). The seventh day “put a stop to” the week’s work. Other related meanings of shavath are: to put away (Ex 12:15), to put down (2Ki 23:5), to be lacking (Lv. 2:13), and to eliminate (Lv 26:6). The most basic meaning is found in Ge 8:22. There will be no “interrupting” (cf. 2Chr. 16:5). Finally, God was not tired in Ge 2:2, 3. Shavath may imply rest, but not in every case. God’s work was completed, and, therefore there was no need to continue. He did not need to rest like a weary man; He only “stopped” His creative activity.

Shabath/shavath – 63 verses in the NASGe 2:2, 3; 8:22; Ex 5:5; 12:15; 16:30; 23:12; 31:17; 34:21; Lev 2:13; 26:6, 34f; Dt 32:26; Josh 5:12; Ru 4:14; 2Ki 23:5, 11; 2Chr 16:5; Neh 4:11; 6:3; Job 32:1; Ps 8:2; 46:9; 89:44; 119:119;Pr 18:18; 22:10; Isa 13:11; 14:4; 16:10; 17:3; 21:2; 24:8; 30:11; 33:8; Je 7:34; 16:9; 31:36; 36:29; 48:33, 35; Lam 5:14, 15; Ezek 6:6; 7:24; 12:23; 16:41; 23:27, 48; 26:13; 30:10, 13, 18; 33:28; 34:10, 25; Da 9:27; 11:18; Hos 1:4;2:11; 7:4; Amos 8:4.

NAS renderings of Shabath/shavath brought to an end(1), cease(21), ceased(7), ceases(3), did away(2), disappear(1), do away(1), eliminate(3), gone(1), hear…more(1), lacking(1), left you without(1), made an end(1), make an end(1), no*(1), observe(1), observe the rest(1), put a stop(3), put an end(3), puts an end(1), remove(2), removed(1), rest(3), rested(3), silence(1), stop(2), stopped(1).

Then God rested on the 7th Day the first day of man’s existence on earth was experiencing God’s rest. Man was created in the finished work of God’s rest. Adam and Eve lived totally dependent on God…that is rest. No anxiety, no fear, etc, but from Gen 3 on you see a restless man after he sinned. When you see a sinful man apart from God, he is restless.

4). The Rest in Heb 4:6-7 is graciously offered only for a time:

In He 4:6note “some” may be referring to Jews. Ro 11:5note refers to a remnant of Jews getting saved and the time is still open. 2Co 3:14, 15

But their minds (referring to Jews) were hardened; for until this very day at the reading of the old covenant the same veil remains unlifted, because it is removed in Christ. But to this day whenever Moses is read, a veil lies over their heart.

But the writer is saying there is still opportunity. There is still a remnant so don’t go back under the Law, because when Moses is read there is veil over your heart and you will shut down the very opportunity you have to enter true rest, when the veil is taken away (2Co 3:16). “Through David” probably refers to the Psalms. Heb 4:7note “fixes” means that He places a boundary on the day.

5). When we enter salvation, we have entered His eternal rest:

In Hebrews 4:8note he refers to Joshua to emphasize that Canaan was not the ultimate rest. Jesus is our Sabbath rest. Mt 11:28 Jesus said: “Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest.” Find a person who has not entered His rest and you’ve got a religious person who is as miserable as you can find. We can partake of Christ’s life as our very life as we are willing to take His yoke upon us, yielding to Him. This is the crucified life of Gal 2:20note. And this life in His rest is not passive, because He will wear you out. But now it’s not you from now on but all Him. His rest is ceasing from self-effort. Ps 46:10note “Cease striving and know that I am God.”

Three tenses of God’s rest: (1) Salvation = rest from the penalty of sin (no condemnation) and we don’t have to “do” something to make sure we’re in. (2). Sanctification: Where daily we continue to enter His rest by abiding in Him, with the result that we are resting from the power of sin in our life. We all have a war going on inside: spirit against flesh. When I chose to remain at the Cross, He will give me rest. Gal 5:16 says when we obey (walk by) the Spirit, then we will not carry out the desire of the flesh, but can rest from that fleshly desire. Have you ever tried to overcome sin in your own power? Have fun! You won’t last long. Instead, just get up tomorrow and acknowledge that the victory is not me overcoming anything because all my self-effort make me weary and heavy laden. The victory is Jesus overcoming me. “Lord Jesus, I just want to look at You today. Whatever happens I’m just trusting You. You be my life. You live Your life through me.” What is that life? Peace, just as the angels announced : “Peace on earth. Good will toward men.” Relax. Rest. (3) Finally believers will rest when we are freed from the presence of sin in glory, the ultimate rest.

Abide in Him
ENTER HIS REST

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Illustration of Rest in a Sailboat – Perhaps you, like I, have spent some time in a sailboat. Relying on the boat to keep us afloat, we slide across the water propelled by a gentle breeze. Yet within the confines of the shores, I had the opportunity and responsibility of guiding the rudder to determine the direction of travel. Is that not similar to living within the will of God? As Christians we must rest upon God to sustain us, and upon the breath of his Spirit to empower us. Yet within his moral boundaries, we each have the opportunity and responsibility to determine our course. – Steve Prieb

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Spurgeon on Rest – Do not tell me that there is no rest for us till we get to heaven. We who have believed in Jesus enter into rest even now. Why should we not do so? Our salvation is complete. The robe of righteousness in which we are clad is finished. The atonement for our sins is fully made. We are reconciled to God, beloved of the Father, preserved by his grace, and supplied by his providence with all that we need. We carry all our burdens to him and leave them at his feet. We spend our lives in his service, and we find his ways to be ways of pleasantness, and his paths to be paths of peace. Oh, yes, we have found rest unto our souls! I recollect the first day that I ever rested in Christ, and I did rest that day. And so will all of you who trust in Jesus as I trusted in him.

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Oswald Chambers on Rest – “And I will give you rest.” Rest means the perfection of motion. “I will give you rest,” that is, “I will stay you.” Not—“I will put you to bed and hold your hand and sing you to sleep”; but—“I will get you out of bed, out of the languor and exhaustion, out of being half dead while you are alive; I will so imbue you with the spirit of life that you will be stayed by the perfection of vital activity.” It is not a picture of an invalid in a bath chair, but of life at such a pitch of health that everything is at rest, there is no exhaustion without recuperation.

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A W Tozer on Rest – You will never have inward peace until you have acknowledged your guilt. This is something you cannot dodge and evade, because you have a conscience and your conscience will never let you rest until you get rid of the guilt!

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Someone has defined a football team as 22 men on the field desperately in need of rest, and 1000’s of folks in the stands in desperate need of exercise! Many of God’s choice servants are in desperate need of rest! Are you resting, resting in Him, abiding in the Vine or still striving in your own strength in the futile attempt to grow spiritual fruit?

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God on Rest – Specifically “My rest” – This phrase occurs 4 times in Scripture (Ps 95:11, He 3:11, He 4:3, He 4:5). It is the very rest God Himself enjoys and which He Himself makes available to us by grace through faith. This phrase is difficult to fully comprehend because it is not just a relaxation of tensions, but a rest that is qualitatively the same rest the Omnipotent God enjoys and is willing to share with us! This truth should motivate a deep love for Him and a strong desire to walk in a manner which is pleasing to Him

God’s rest is a “working rest” for even thought He finished His creation work and rested, this did not a cessation from work, but rather the proper repose that comes from completing a work. Jesus emphasized His Father’s ongoing work

My Father is working until now, and I Myself am working. (John 5:17)

God’s repose is an active rest if you will. Yes, He rests, but in his rest He keeps working.

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Stayed upon Jehovah Hearts are fully blest,
Finding, as he promised, Perfect peace and rest.
Frances Ridley Havergal

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I thank thee, Lord, that here our souls,
Though amply blest,
Can never find, although they seek,
A perfect rest,
Nor ever shall, until they lean
On Jesus’ breast.
Adelaide Anne Proctor

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Anxiety is a word of unbelief or unreasoning dread. We have no right to allow it. Full faith in God puts it to rest. -Horace Bushnell (Note: Many but not all of these quotations are from a source I highly recommend if you enjoy using Biblically sound quotes [many quotes appeal to “emotions” but lack the sound doctrine of the majority of these quotes] The Complete Gathered Gold A Treasury of Quotations for Christians by John Blanchard Book or Computer version)

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To “wait on the Lord,” and to “rest in the Lord,” is an indication of a healthy, holy faith, while impatience is an indication of an un-healthy, un-holy unbelief. –Oswald Chambers

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There is no other upon which we can rest in a dying moment, but the Bible.- John Selden

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The Bible, as a revelation from God, was not designed to give us all the information we might desire, nor to solve all the questions about which the human soul is perplexed, but to impart enough to be a safe guide to the haven of eternal rest. – Albert Barnes

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Although we must still meet death, let us nevertheless be calm and serene in living and dying, when we have Christ going before us. If anyone cannot set his mind at rest by disregarding death, that man should know that he has not yet gone far enough in the faith of Christ. – John Calvin

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Faith is reason at rest in God. – C. H. Spurgeon

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True faith may be defined as the heart’s rest in Jesus! -Anon.

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Where reason fails, faith can rest. – John Blanchard

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Faith can rest in what it cannot comprehend. – John Owen

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The one who has come to trust in the salvation of Jesus for his soul will be content to rest in the revelation of Jesus for his mind. – H. Enoch

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The grace of God which is in a real Christian will not allow him to be at rest in sin. A believer who has sinned is like a man who is required to be his own executioner. – Maurice Roberts

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How blest thy saints! how safely led! How surely kept! how richly fed! Saviour of all in earth and sea, How happy they who rest in thee! –Henry Francis Lyte

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It is very well to rest on God when you have other props, but it is best of all to rest on him when every prop is knocked away. – C. H. Spurgeon

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Who can measure the happiness of heaven, where no evil at all can touch us, no good will be out of reach; where life is to one long laud extolling God, who will be all in all; where there will be no weariness to call for rest, no need to call for toil, no place for any energy but praise. – Augustine

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Someone has observed, “In Christ we have a love that can never be fathomed, a peace that can never be understood, a rest that can never be disturbed, a joy that can never be diminished, a hope that can never be disappointed, and a spiritual resource that can never be exhausted.”

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Someone has said, “The rest of your life depends on the rest of your nights.”

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Psalm 4:8 – Someone has said, “The rest of your life depends on the rest of your nights.” During World War II, an elderly woman in England had endured the nerve-shattering bombings with amazing serenity. When asked to give the secret of her calmness amid the terror and danger, she replied, “Well, every night I say my prayers. And then I remember that God is always watching, so I go peacefully to sleep. After all, there is no need for both of us to stay awake!”

If anxious thoughts keep you awake, ask the Lord to quiet your heart and give you the faith to be able to relax and let Him solve the problems that disturb you. That’s what David did when he was in trouble, for he wrote, “I will both lie down in peace, and sleep; for You alone, O LORD, make me dwell in safety” When you realize your heavenly Father is watching over you, you can find sweet rest. —H. G. Bosch

Because God never sleeps,
we can sleep in peace.

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Someone once outlined the words of Isaiah 26:3 this way:

“You—a precious God.
Perfect peace—a priceless possession.
Whose mind is stayed on You—a present focus.
Because he trusts in You—a powerful faith.”

Rest in the Lord, and wait patiently for him; fret not thyself. Psalm 37:7

Most of us are inclined to think that the pressures upon us are the greatest. The Psalmist would have had ample reason to feel that way. Hunted by his enemies, forsaken by his friends, maligned by his critics, David offers some wise spiritual advice in Psalm 37. While waiting at the counter to check the delay on a flight home, I overheard a perturbed passenger say to the ticket agent, “If you had told me sooner, I wouldn’t have lost my cool.” It was rather obvious that whatever he had lost, it was still missing! I confess I thought of regrettable occasions when I too had acted in a similar fashion.

The little trifling things that plague our spirits should not be allowed to irritate us to the point of impatience and fretfulness. Certainly we must not let it be followed by bitter complaint. Three times over, the Psalmist uses the phrase, “Fret not thyself” (Ps 37:1, 7, 8). There is something we can do about it. We must avoid succumbing to the circumstances and the frustrations, lest we add to this human tendency toward fretfulness.

What is the antidote for this? “Rest in the Lord, and wait patiently for him.” The Berkeley Version translates this, “Be still before the Lord and resign yourself to him.” The hymn-writer says,

Moment by Moment I’m kept in His love;
moment by moment I’ve life from above;
looking to Jesus till glory doth shine;
moment by moment, O Lord, I am Thine.”

We do not have to lose our “cool.” A simple “moment by moment” faith which recognizes that “the steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord” will keep us from fretting.

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Jesus, the Very Thought of Thee
Jesus! the very thought of Thee
With sweetness fills my breast;
But sweeter far Thy face to see,
And in Thy presence rest.
—Bernard of Clairvaux

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Saved to the Uttermost
Saved to the uttermost; Jesus is near;
Keeping me safely, He casteth out fear;
Trusting His promises, now I am blest;
Leaning upon Him, how sweet is my rest.
—Kirkpatrick

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Not So in Haste, My Heart
Not so in haste, my heart!
Have faith in God and wait;
Although He seems to linger long,
He never comes too late.

He never cometh late;
He knoweth what is best;
Vex not thyself in vain;
Until He cometh, rest.

Until He cometh, rest,
Nor grudge the hours that roll;
The feet that wait for God
Are soonest at the goal.

Are soonest at the goal
That is not gained with speed;
Then hold thee still, my heart,
For I shall wait His lead.
—Bradford Torrey

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I walked life’s path with “Worry,”
Disturbed and quite unblessed,
Until I trusted Jesus;
Now “Faith” has given rest.
— G.W.

This study is from the website: http://www.preceptaustin.org/rest_in_hebrews_4.htm

About goodnessofgod2010

author, attorney
This entry was posted in Bible Teachings, Inspirational Messages and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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