“Therefore, since a promise remains of entering His rest, let us fear lest any of you seem to have come short of it.
For indeed the gospel was preached to us as well as to them; but the word which they heard did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in those who heard it.”
Hebrews 4:1-2 NKJV
Most days I spend a chunk of time listening to music. I’m often on the lookout for Christian artists whose music goes beyond the norm but maintains a message and sensitivity reflecting God’s Word and heart. That’s how I discovered a particular musician. What he posted to his “About” page grabbed me. He says, “Repent and be baptized to Jesus Christ for the remission of your sins; receive the Holy Spirit. That’s true freedom.”
It’s been a while since I’ve seen the Gospel presented so bluntly – I have to admit it jarred me a bit! But it’s true. And there’s a recipe for experiencing God’s rest that’s just as plain. Hebrews 4 emphasizes that to enter God’s rest, we have to hear God, and mix what we hear with faith.
Hebrews also carries a strong warning. The related text in Chapters 3 and 4 describes how the children of Israel, led by God out of Egypt into the wilderness of Canaan – would not believe God, despite His repeated demonstrations of love, provision and care for them. Their rebellion resulted in God’s wrath. That generation of Israelites died in the desert and never got to experience God’s rest.
God wants you to experience His rest today, because He loves you. He provides real relief and restoration, including in these times of toxic anxiety and stress. Just reach your hand out to Him; it’s not hard. And your certainty of His rest grows deeper over time. It’s part of living a lifestyle devoted to Him.
Hear His word, heed it and mix it with faith! Believe and commit yourself to what He says, and He will give you His rest.
Minister Ann Pinkney