Classic Christianity – A Closer Look at The Finality of The Cross P32 (10-19-21)
Come to Jesus; Enter that Sabbath Rest God Has Provided; Take a Vacation in Jesus
Why do we not experience peace? Is it because of faulty thinking? So, when you recognize you are not thinking correctly, do you go to a counselor instead of the Counselor, the Spirit of truth? What did the counselor prescribe? Maybe the counselor did point you to the Counselor. Or, maybe he just gave you some medicine to numb your mind. Either way, he cannot help you. But if He knows Christ, he can certainly point you to the one who can. Or do you go to a gentle stream? And you might feel some temporary relief, until you leave the scene. Is that the peace we read about that Jesus tells us we can have? No. He says that He gives us peace the world knows nothing about.
25 “All this I have spoken while still with you. 26 But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you. 27 Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.
How then do we experience that peace? Have you allowed the Counselor, the Holy Spirit of truth, alive living in you to counsel you, to renew your mind, to correct the error in your thinking?
28 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.
What are some of the barriers to experiencing peace that God wants for you. Well, the obvious answer is you do not consult Him as your Counselor. Come unto Christ. But, it is also because of false teaching you have been taught. You are taught things contrary to what God has said is true. God is gentle and humble of heart. Come unto Him for the renewing of your mind.
You have not realized that you have been taught error. You are told to keep short accounts with God, that you need to confess your sins to God to get forgiveness, to use 1 John 1:9 as a Christian bar of soap to get your sins cleansed, yet failing to realize that scripture tells us that our sins and lawless acts God remembers no more, that your sins have already been forgiven, and that you are already cleansed of all your sins. You are a child of God, made into a new creation, redeemed, sanctified, justified, holy and righteous. In essence, you have been made complete in Christ. You are made that way by God. So what are we told in Hebrews about a Sabbath rest?
8 For if Joshua had given them rest, God would not have spoken later about another day. 9 There remains, then, a Sabbath-rest for the people of God; 10 for anyone who enters God’s rest also rests from their works, just as God did from his.
So there is a rest that scripture speaks about that is available to us today in Christ. Recall what Jesus told the Samaritan woman at the well.
13 Jesus answered, “Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, 14 but whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life.”
15 The woman said to him, “Sir, give me this water so that I won’t get thirsty and have to keep coming here to draw water.”
If you want to find rest for your soul, there is only one place to find it. It is not in religion. It is not in Christianity. It is not in Churchianity. It is in a person Jesus Christ our Lord. So that is why He tells us to come unto Me. All I can do if I am counseling someone is to prescribe to them, to lead them to the one who says that He can give you peace and rest for your souls. The problem in the Christian world, in many instances, is we do not believe Christ, so we go to every other source that comes down the pike. We equate everything we are involved in to Christ and say it does not work. So it is no wonder we have no confidence in Christ because we have perceived what we do in modern day Christianity as Christ. It absolutely does not work. Legalism does not make you perfect. Legalism does not make you exalted above the heavens. Legalism does not make you holy and set apart. Only Christ does.
What many people are walking away from, it does not work, have to realize it never did work. Just because it has a cross on a steeple does not mean it is a Christian church in the fact you are understanding what Christ taught. If He says truth sets you free, all we have to understand is I am not free. When you are weary and burdened and you do not have any rest in your soul, what Jesus says is there is error. If you will come unto Me and learn from Me. What is He going to teach you? Freudian psychology? No. He is going to teach you what He said. Come to me. I am gentle and humble of heart and I will give you rest for your souls. How is He going to do that? By teaching you truth that will set you free. What is being free? Rest. Rest for your soul. Hebrews tells us that there is a rest for the people of God.
16 Therefore do not let anyone judge you by what you eat or drink, or with regard to a religious festival, a New Moon celebration or a Sabbath day. 17 These are a shadow of the things that were to come; the reality, however, is found in Christ.
He is talking about a Sabbath rest. What is being said is this. Judging people by what they eat and drink is not reality. Religious festival, New Moon celebrations and Sabbath days are not reality. Christ is the reality. That is why He says come unto Me. People look at Sabbath as a day of the week. That is what it used to be. But it became something new. Christ is Lord of the Sabbath. He is our rest. No one else except Him. He said Come to Me and you will find rest for your souls. He did not say come on Saturday or Sunday. This is a day of the week, and has no meaning at it at all. Jesus says, I am your Sabbath. Rest is not what you do on Saturday or Sunday. Rest is what you do in Christ. People have denominations worshiping God on Saturday and think every one else are sinners. Then you have people who worship on Sunday and think everyone else is stupid. But He says these things are shadows. They are not real. I do not judge people by those things. It is not real. What is real is Christ. He also said some things about food there. Let no one judge you by what you eat and drink.
13 Therefore let us stop passing judgment on one another. Instead, make up your mind not to put any stumbling block or obstacle in the way of a brother or sister. 14 I am convinced, being fully persuaded in the Lord Jesus, that nothing is unclean in itself. But if anyone regards something as unclean, then for that person it is unclean. 15 If your brother or sister is distressed because of what you eat, you are no longer acting in love. Do not by your eating destroy someone for whom Christ died. 16 Therefore do not let what you know is good be spoken of as evil.
I am real spiritual about only eating vegetables. That is not the case. You are a little confused. If that is unclean, then for him it is unclean. But do not judge someone else because they are not doing it.
17 For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking, but of righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit, 18 because anyone who serves Christ in this way is pleasing to God and receives human approval.
The kingdom of God is not about eating and drinking, New Moon celebrations, religious festivals, but it is a matter of righteousness peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. When Jesus said come unto Me all you who weary and are burdened, and I will give you rest, that is peace. How come I can have peace and rest? Because of righteousness that has been given to you in Christ Jesus. So I do not need to continue to work being righteous, not because of what I do, but only because of what He does. It is a matter of peace.
27 Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.
1 “Do not let your hearts be troubled. You believe in God; believe also in me. 2 My Father’s house has many rooms; if that were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you? 3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am.
There is a peace of God that surpasses all understanding. There is a peace the world offers, and it is quite understandable and it is not peace that surpasses all understanding. The Christian world is so willing to allow the good to choke out the best. I talk to many people. This thing helped. In other words, it gave a little relief. That is all they are interested in, a little relief. I got sober. So what if you are still lost. You will die a sober lost man. The issue is not getting sober but getting saved. The issue is coming to Christ and resting in Him. To understand that is no longer you that lives, but Christ who lives in you. All the world is doing today is looking for some Band-Aids to put on some outward symptoms instead of getting to the cause. We are dealing with fruit not the root.
When talking about what the kingdom of God is about, it is talking about righteousness, joy and peace that can only be given by Christ. Interestingly enough, those things are called the fruit of the Spirit, not the fruit of man. Man cannot give it. It is fruit of the Spirit. Only Spirit can.
22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.
Those are the fruit of the Spirit. That is all that matters. The Spirit of God is not a matter of eating or drinking or what day you go to church or not, but a matter of righteousness that has been given to you by Christ, to have peace given by God that surpasses all understanding, finding rest for your souls where Jesus says come unto me for I am gentle and humble of heart, and you will find rest for your souls. That is what the Sabbath rest is all about.
9 There remains, then, a Sabbath-rest for the people of God; 10 for anyone who enters God’s rest also rests from their works, just as God did from his.
The Greek word for rest literally means to take a vacation. God tells us to take a vacation. How come? His work is done. There is nothing left to do. The sin issue between God and man is finished. It has been taken care of. The legalistic world wants to keep it active. God says it is over and finished. There is no more forgiveness to obtain. If there was Christ would have to come and die again. He is not going to do that.
28 so Christ was sacrificed once to take away the sins of many; and he will appear a second time, not to bear sin, but to bring salvation to those who are waiting for him.
When He is coming back, He is not coming to deal with sin. He is coming to bring salvation to those waiting on Him. The reason He is not going back to deal with sin is because He has already dealt with it. Inasmuch as it has been dealt with there is nothing else to deal with. Christ has done it all. It is all of Christ and none of us. There is nothing left for us to do but rest in the finished work of Christ.
To those of you who are tired of trying to get more forgiveness, tired of trying to stay in fellowship with God, trying to live the Christian life. It is Jesus Christ who says come unto me and you will find rest for your souls. There is a place you can take a vacation. He did not say come unto me and you will immediately find rest for your souls. He says you will find it here. When I find it there, then I am going to have to rest in it. I can find something and not rest in it. Come up here and you will find a bed. So you stand there looking at it exhausted, instead of getting on it. You are going to find Jesus as your source of rest but until you climb in His lap you will not recognize that. I am through trying. I am not trying to be righteous any more. I am not trying to be holy any more. I am not trying to be acceptable in God any more because I go to church on Saturday or Sunday or whatever day it might be. I am not acceptable in the sight of God because I celebrate this New Moon celebration and somebody else doesn’t. I am not acceptable in God because I am gutting it out and I am not eating meat when my mouth is watering. All of that are foreshadows and have no meaning to it at all. What you do has no meaning. There is a rest in realizing it is all of Me and none of you. That is available to you if you are willing to come and take a vacation.
Those who believe and are going to enter into God’s rest are going to have to rest from their works just as God rested from His. He rested from His only after He accomplished all of this. He did not rest because He said I do not think I can get this done and so I think I will just rest. He did it and therefore could rest because there is not anything else to do. If we are going to enter God’s rest, what are we going to have to believe concerning this sin issue.
1 Peter 3:18
18 For Christ also suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring you to God. He was put to death in the body but made alive in the Spirit.
What are we going to have to believe then, if we are going to enter into that rest? That Christ died for sin, how any times? Once. For how many? For all. What is the rest, the “therefore” on that? Therefore, He died for my sins once and for all. Is He going to do it again? No. Is there any more forgiveness to be executed? No. What can I conclude about that? It is finished. What is the most natural response when someone has done something that huge for you? Thank you. That is the only heart attitude you can have if you understand the Sabbath rest. What is a rest? Taking a vacation. It is a paid vacation. Thank you.
17 Then he adds:
“Their sins and lawless acts
I will remember no more.”[Jeremiah 31:34]
18 And where these have been forgiven, there is no longer any sacrifice for sin.
2 Corinthians 5:19
19 that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting people’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation.
What does that mean? It means God was in Christ reconciling the world unto Himself. It means your sins are not counted against you anymore. Christian, when are we going to believe that? When are we going to stop looking Christ in the face and saying, “I do not think you finished all that at the cross.” I guess it is when we stop listening to man and start listening to the bible. I guess it is when we realize that some of the things we are taught are not necessarily in the scripture. Let me give an example of that.
1 Corinthians 13:4-8
4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
8 Love never fails.
We take 1 Corinthians 13, and rightfully so, and say this is how God wants us to love one another. There is one problem with that. We can’t. Do you suppose that God would command you and me to love other people with a different love than He loved us. Or, to love one another with a higher love than how God loves us. I want you to love in a way that God can’t but you can? No. What is love and God’s love for me? It is not rude. It is not self seeking. God is never easily angered with you. And God keeps no record of wrongs.
God’s love does not even keep records of wrongs. We have been told there will be a movie screen up there in heaven with everything displayed about what we have done and thought. We are taught that. But how does that tie into the fact that God does not keep any record of our wrongs? How does that tie into that there is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus? It does not.
7 In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace
Does it say we have forgiveness of sins in accordance with your confession? No. In accordance with the riches of God’s grace. People do not separate, and this is a tragedy, the difference between confession, agreeing with God, and forgiveness. To confess for forgiveness is to call God a liar, in essence, when He said it is already done. To confess in order to change your mind in regard to what you are doing which is totally inconsistent with who you are as a child of God is what a child of God will be doing the rest of your life, not because you have to but because that is who you are now as a new creature in Christ. As a new creature in Christ, when I am acting like an idiot to somebody, Christ who is alive living in me is telling me, Bob, you are acting like an idiot. He is also saying it is not a sin I forgot at the cross. It is paid for. But your behavior is inconsistent to who you are. Is that consistent with who you? No. Lord, you are right, Lord. What do you want me to do, Lord? Go straighten it out with your brother. Is that agreeing with God for forgiveness? No. It is agreeing with God you are already forgiven. It is because of that I am free to go and straighten it out with my brother.
When people say you never confess your sin, that is ludicrous. You do not confess them for forgiveness, to agree with God for forgiveness. Yes, you confess for changing your actions and your mind, constantly. That is the beauty of the gospel.
Sabbath rest is resting from your works just as God did from His. Why is He resting from His works? Because His work is finished. In Ephesians 1:7, we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sin, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace. One of the things that keeps people entering into this Sabbath rest is the fact that part of the Christian community, we have been taught about losing your relationship with God. So people are worried that they can lose their relationship. I wonder how that can ever create rest for your soul. So, let us enter that rest, to rest from our works just as God did from His.