Summary: We are going to learn tonight what is it that is keeping me from finding God’s rest?
Are You Resting in Christ?
Pm Service April 5th 2009
I am sure that each one in this room looks forward to those times we think if everything goes as plan we might get some rest.
There is so much we have to do that it seems that rest is hard to come by. It is not that easy to find rest now a days. We work long hours; have so much to do after we get home from work especially if we have kids or grandkids to raise that we find ourselves many nights keeping the midnight oil burning.
We try to make time by microwaving our dinner rather than cooking those good old “home cooked meals”. We talk on cell phones as we drive around town to save time. We run through the “drive ins” to pick up our prescriptions, doing our banking or pick up our dry cleaning in the hope that it will save us a couple of minutes.
But despite all that we do, rest is hard to find.
I think that the same thing is true in our Christian lives. God promises us rest. “Come to me all you who are weary, and I will give you rest.” But despite God’s promise, many don’t find rest there either. There are many weary Christians walking around.
The Israelites didn’t find God’s rest and I want to know why? Twice the writer of Hebrews tells us in the passage of Scripture we are studying tonight that they could not enter into God’s rest. What may have prevented them from finding rest may be the same exact thing that is keeping us from finding rest! So that is where we are going to learn tonight what is it that is keeping me from finding God’s rest?
Read Scriptures: Hebrews 3:8-19
I. You will fail to find the rest you are looking for in Christ if you can not hand over your problems to God.
Hebrews 3:8 “do not harden your hearts as you did in the rebellion, during the time of testing in the desert,”
The time of testing for the Israelites occurred when the twelve (12) spies returned from searching out the Promised Land and ten (10) gave the negative report that persuaded the whole assembly not to enter the Promised Land because there were giants in the land and fortified cities.
The Israelites could not hand over their enemies to God; and the Israelites could not hand over the fortification that the enemies possessed to God. And as result they could not enter into God’s rest.
I wonder tonight- what it is that you are hanging on to that you have not given to God and as result you have not found God’s rest?
Let me boil it down to basics for you. It is an issue of trust in God because trust is an act of my will whereby I give my burdens to God. The Israelites could not trust God to deal with their enemies or their fortified cities and therefore they could not give those things over to God and find rest.
I have learned that there are a lot of things that I can not control. I can not control my health. I can not control my financial future. I can not even control the church I attend. So can I trust God to handle those things? If I can, I will find God’s rest. If I cannot, then God’s rest will pass me by and I will have missed it.
II. You will fail to find the rest you are looking for in Christ if you can not see that God is working in your life every day you live.
Hebrews 3:9 “ where your fathers tested and tried me and for forty years saw what I did.”
How often did the Israelites see the working of God in their life? The answer is everyday. By day, He was the cloud that lead them; by night He was the fire that protected them. In the morning, He was the one that sent manna from heaven to feed them and in the evening He was the One who sent quail from the coast to give them meat. Every day God’s presence was seen in their lives.
If God was working in the lives of the Israelites every day; how often do you think God is working in our lives? I believe every day because just as God loved the Israelites, God loves His church even more, and we are His church. So I know God is working in my life everyday by faith even when I can not see what He is doing.
And therefore, I should be able to trust Him. I should be familiar enough with what God is doing in my life that I can see that I can trust Him when something comes my way that I can not deal with. But if I don’t see God working in my life how can I trust Him when something comes upon me that I can not deal with on my own? I can’t.