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The Preeminence of Christ – Part 7

The Preeminence Of Christ – Part 7

We have to labour to rest. It will be the hardest thing we’ve ever done to quit relating to God on the basis of our own works and start trusting totally in what Jesus did for us.

The writer of the book of Hebrews told the Jewish believers (and us) to make every effort to enter the rest of God. He said, “Let us therefore be DILIGENT to enter that rest, lest anyone fall according to the same example of disobedience.” (Hebrews 4 v 11)

Hebrews 3 v 19 tells us that the disobedience that prevented Israel from entering the promised land was UNBELIEF. So, unbelief (not believing and accepting what God did for us) will keep us out of salvation and its benefits.

As we saw in part 6 of this series, Hebrews 4 v 10 says God’s rest is when one CEASES FROM HIS OR HER WORK to obtain or keep salvation because the work is already done.

God has made salvation FREE TO ANYONE who will believe that Jesus Christ was a perfect sacrifice for the sins of the world (1 John 2 v 2). He only requires that we believe what He has done, and confess Jesus Christ as Lord for us to access salvation and its benefits (Romans 10 vs 9-10).

The Jewish people who were intended to receive the book of Hebrews, at that time, were being told that Christ was not enough. They were being told that they needed Christ PLUS the works of the Law for them to be saved.

It is for this reason that the writer of this book went into details to show that JESUS FULFILLED ALL THE DEMANDS OF THE LAW, and HE BECAME HIGH PRIEST in the order of Melchizedek (Hebrews 5 vs 5-6). That meant that the RULES OF ENGAGEMENT WERE CHANGED (Hebrews 7 v 12).

When Jesus was appointed High Priest of the New Covenant, the SYSTEM OF THE LAW WAS NO LONGER NECESSARY BECAUSE THE SACRIFICE (JESUS CHRIST) HAD BEEN OFFERED AND GOD’S WRATH WAS APPEASED (Hebrews 8 vs 7-12). The Jewish nation no longer had to keep their way of worship (Hebrews 8 v 13 & Colossians 2 vs 16-17).

We are all urged to enter into the rest God obtained for us through Christ. We enter in by simply believing that Jesus Christ finished the work for our salvation (Romans 10 vs 9-10).

Romans 8 v 32 says, “He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also FREELY GIVE US ALL THINGS?”

It takes effort to rest in the finished work of the Lord. Our human natures want to do something to be worthy of the Lord’s blessings. But the truth is that we can never deserve the goodness of the Lord.

We HAVE TO CEASE FROM TRUSTING IN OUR OWN WORKS AND REST IN WHAT JESUS CHRIST HAS FREELY PROVIDED BY GRACE. THAT TAKES EFFORT.

Let’s:

REST IN THE FINISHED WORK OF JESUS CHRIST – Hebrews 4 vs 1-3!

PS: Visit us at https://fountainofhisword.co.za for more articles like this one and audio sermons for listening and/or free download.

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Fountain of His Word Ministries
Monday, July 30th, 2018 at 3:02pm

The Preeminence Of Christ – Part 6

Religion tells us to “work for heaven”, God tells us to enter into His rest if we want to be admitted in heaven. Who should we follow?

It’s not our best effort that makes us acceptable before God, it is God’s best; JESUS CHRIST. We are called to rest in the finished work of Christ.

After God created all things, He rested on the seventh day. He was not tired, He had completed the work. This is like when a lawyer says “I rest my case”. That doesn’t mean that he is tired, it means he has said all he wanted to say.

That is the rest we are called to; WHERE WE HAVE CEASED FROM ALL OUR WORKS.

Hebrews 4 v 6‭-‬7 say:

“So God’s rest is there for people to enter, but those who first heard this good news failed to enter because they disobeyed God. (These people observed the Sabbath rest but this verse says they failed to enter God’s rest. Obviously the promised rest of God was not the seventh day rest.)

“So God set another time for entering his rest, and that time is TODAY (NOT THE SEVENTH DAY OF THE WEEK, BUT, TODAY). God announced this through David much later in the words already quoted: “Today when you hear his voice, don’t harden your hearts.”” (Brackets are mine)

The preceding verses, and the following verses, show that the Sabbath Day rest was a PICTURE OF WHAT WAS TO COME, NOT THE REALITY (Colossians 2 v 16-17).

Hebrews 4 v 8-9 continue to say:

“Now if Joshua had succeeded in giving them this rest, God would not have spoken about ANOTHER DAY of REST STILL TO COME. So THERE IS A SPECIAL REST STILL WAITING FOR THE PEOPLE OF GOD.”

These verses say the rest God was talking about was not the rest they were going to get into when they enter the promised land, Canaan. What proves that is the fact that David WAS STILL TALKING ABOUT ENTERING into the rest of God even when they were already in the promise land.

Hebrews 4 v 10 then explains what is the rest of God:

“FOR HE WHO HAS ENTERED HIS REST HAS HIMSELF ALSO CEASED FROM HIS WORKS AS GOD DID FROM HIS.”

Like I said before, God did not rest on the seventh day because He was tired. He rested because the work was finished. TODAY (not on the seventh day of the week) we enter into His rest by resting in the finished work of Christ.

We are not acceptable before God because of our righteous works, WE ARE ACCEPTABLE BECAUSE OF CHRIST’S RIGHTEOUS WORK. Romans 3 v 20‭-‬22 say:

“For no one can ever be made right with God by doing what the law commands. THE LAW SIMPLY SHOWS US HOW SINFUL WE ARE. But now God has shown us a way to be made right with him WITHOUT KEEPING THE REQUIREMENTS OF THE LAW, AS WAS PROMISED IN THE WRITINGS of Moses and the prophets long ago. WE ARE MADE RIGHT WITH GOD BY PLACING OUR FAITH IN JESUS CHRIST. And this is true for everyone who believes, no matter who we are.”

We should stop despising the work of God in Christ. Our works will never ever make us right before God. Hebrews 10:29 says:

“What, then, of those who despise the Son of God? who treat as a cheap thing the blood of God’s covenant which PURIFIED them from sin? WHO INSULT THE SPIRIT OF GRACE? (Not who insult the Spirit of the Law). Just think how much worse is the punishment they will deserve!” (Brackets are mine)

Let’s:

REST IN THE FINISHED WORK OF JESUS CHRIST – Hebrews 4:1-3!

PS: Visit us at https://fountainofhisword.co.za for more articles like this one and audio sermons for listening and/or free download.

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Fountain of His Word Ministries
Thursday, July 26th, 2018 at 7:32am

The Preeminence Of Christ – Part 5

God established the Sabbath day as a picture of things to come.

When the reality of that picture came, the picture became irrelevant (Romans 10 v 4, Galatians 3 v 19 & 2 Corinthians 3 vs 6-7). Then, the early Church began to gather on the first day of the week to commemorate that reality; Christ (Acts 20:7).

According to Exodus 23 v 12, one of the purposes of the Sabbath was to give people and their animals one day of physical rest each week.

Deuteronomy 5 v 15 also clearly states that the Sabbath was to serve as a REMINDER to the Jews that they had been slaves in Egypt and were delivered from bondage NOT BY THEIR OWN EFFORTS, but by the supernatural power of God.

However, in the New Testament, an even CLEARER PURPOSE of the Sabbath is stated. In Colossians 2 vs 16-17, Paul revealed that the SABBATH WAS ONLY A SHADOW OF THINGS TO COME AND IS NOW FULFILLED IN CHRIST .

Hebrews 4 v 1 says, “Therefore, since a promise remains of entering HIS REST, let us fear lest any of you seem to have come short of it.”

ENTERING INTO THE REST OF GOD ISN’T AUTOMATIC. We have to believe, just as it was with the Israelites who came out of Egypt. God intended not only to bring them out of Egypt but also to bring them into the land of promise, but it didn’t happen, because of their unbelief (Hebrews 3 v 19).

Hebrews 4 v 2 says, “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.”

The Israelites who came out of Egypt didn’t have the Gospel preached to them in the sense that they were told about Jesus by name and that He died for our sins. But they had that preached to them in a PICTURE AND TYPE through the Passover lamb.

THEY WEREN’T DELIVERED BECAUSE OF ANY HOLINESS OF THEIR OWN. They were saved from the death angel and from Egyptian bondage BECAUSE OF THEIR PARTAKING OF THE SACRIFICE. It’s the same with us, only now we have the real sacrifice of which the Passover lamb was only a type and shadow (1 Corinthians 5 v 7).

Hebrews 4 v 3 says, “For we who have believed do enter that rest, as He has said: “So I swore in My wrath, ‘They shall not enter My rest,’ ” although the works were finished from the foundation of the world.”

This is a quote from Psalms 95 v 11, which says, “Unto whom I sware in my wrath that they should not enter into my rest.” Then the writer of Hebrews spoke of God resting on the seventh day from His labors of creation. This sheds more light on what this rest of the Lord is.

God’s rest is different to the rest Israel entered into on a Sabbath. GOD RESTED NOT BECAUSE OF EXHAUSTION BUT BECAUSE EVERYTHING WAS COMPLETE. (Isaiah 40 v 28). There was nothing else to do. It was done perfectly.

THE SABBATH WAS SYMBOLIC OF THE REAL REST God was going to give those who would believe in Christ. The New Testament Sabbath REST IS SIMPLY A RELATIONSHIP WITH GOD in which WE HAVE CEASED FROM DOING THINGS BY OUR OWN EFFORTS AND ARE LETTING GOD WORK THROUGH US (Galatians 2 v 20 and Hebrews 4 v 10).

JESUS HAS ALREADY PURCHASED SALVATION AND ALL ITS BENEFITS FOR US. It’s already done (Ephesians 1 v 3). We don’t have to pray and ask God to heal us or prosper us. It’s already a done deal (2 Peter 1 v 3-4).

We just need to REST IN WHAT HAS ALREADY BEEN PROVIDED. There is a place we can reach where WE AREN’T STRIVING TO GET GOD TO BLESS US BUT ARE RESTING BY FAITH IN WHAT HAS ALREADY BEEN DONE. That is the Sabbath rest that is being spoken of in these verses.

In Ephesians 1 v 17‭-‬19, Paul prayed for believers to know what is already ours:

“.. do not cease to give thanks for you, making mention of you in my prayers: that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may GIVE to you the SPIRIT OF WISDOM AND REVELATION in the knowledge of Him, the eyes of YOUR UNDERSTANDING BEING ENLIGHTENED; that you may KNOW what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance IN THE SAINTS, and what is the exceeding greatness of His power TOWARD US who believe, according to the working of His mighty power.”

Let’s:

REST IN THE FINISHED WORK OF JESUS CHRIST – Hebrews 4:1-3!

PS: Visit us at https://fountainofhisword.co.za for more articles like this one and audio sermons for listening and/or free download.

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