13:8). Paul and his readers would have been astonished to discover that such a proof text would ever be needed. It still lies ahead. that today you would listen as he speaks! Now we come to a controversial statement: “There remains therefore a rest for the people of God” (Hebrews 4:9 Hebrews 4:9There remains therefore a rest to the people of God.American King James Version×). 8 Those who are in the flesh cannot please God. When we come to faith in Christ, we are joined with Christ and with other believers (see 1 Corinthians 12:12-14; Ephesians 2:11-22; 1 Peter 2:4-5, 9-10). But, although the ancient Israelites “kept” the Sabbath, he tells us, they did not enter into the Sabbath rest (Heb. But while acknowledging the familiar history of God’s Sabbath rest, he simultaneously reaches forward to give that original rest a new depth of meaning. The book continues on to explain how Christ’s sacrifice supersedes the Jewish system of sacrifice and renders it unnecessary. (B)11 Let us, therefore, make every effort to enter that rest, so that no one will perish by following their example of disobedience. This weekly act of keeping the Sabbath reminds us of this glorious hope. Do not harden your hearts, whom you murdered between the temple and the altar, You are always resisting the Holy Spirit, like your ancestors did, They killed those who foretold long ago the coming of the Righteous One, whose betrayers and murderers you have now become. And so as we come to chapter 4, we find that it is tightly related to chapter 3. A shadow or type suggests a fulfillment by Jesus that passes away. Actual Sabbatarian arguments based upon Hebrews 4. (NJB) 29 Take my yoke on you and learn from me, because I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. Do I lose my rest because of this? Seventh, the offer of “rest” remains till “today.”, Eighth, the danger of failing to enter rest also remains till “today.”, Ninth, the fundamental problem is that of “unbelief.”. They demanded in bitter, resentful tones, “Is the Lord among us or not?” (Ex. The thread which unifies chapter 1 is that the Son is superior to the angels. How is Jesus our Sabbath rest? “But when at last they sat down to nurse their black eyes and their bleeding noses, they all said: ‘Well, at any rate there’s no Humbug here. The first rest mentioned is the “rest” the first generation of Israelites failed to enter, namely entrance into the Promised Land and rest from its enemies (Hebrews 3:11). Third,we should note that the entire first generation3 of Israelites failed to enter their rest (verse 16). 33 At times you were publicly exposed to abuse and afflictions, and at other times you came to share with others who were treated in that way. 24 And let us take thought of how to spur one another on to love and good works, 25 not abandoning our own meetings, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging each other, and even more so because you see the day drawing near (Hebrews 10:23-25). And that is why the Sabbath day will never be replaced—will never become outdated or obsolete. Paul proclaims that this Sabbath rest has always existed—has always been available to anyone who was willing (Heb. True Sabbath rest does not come from adhering to the law or taking a break from work one day of the week. 51 “You stubborn people, with uncircumcised hearts and ears! Their greatest sin was not sexual immorality or idolatry or overt rebellion against God. No Christian even considered the possibility of another day supplanting the true Sabbath until centuries later. Then there is the “rest” which is available for the readers of Psalm 95. Even more, torn between the familiar beliefs and rituals they had cherished since childhood, and their staunch conviction regarding newly-discovered truth, the internal conflict must have been agonizing. Think about how the flowers of the field grow; they do not work or spin. 3: 8-11). Trust in Jesus. 4:6). 32 But remember the former days when you endured a harsh conflict of suffering after you were enlightened. They killed those who foretold long ago the coming of the Righteous One, whose betrayers and murderers you have now become! We should pray that we don’t have to flee on a Sabbath (Matthew 24:20). That’s why they rest and why their ancestors since ancient times have rested. Join us for the online Adventist Today Sabbath Seminar. But do not do what they do, for they do not practice what they teach. But both are proper, especially the word sabbatism, in this place, because, by directing us to what is said Hebrews 4:4, it showeth the nature of that rest which remaineth to the people of God. Therefore, as the Holy Spirit says, “Oh, that today you would listen as he speaks! Who will rescue me from this body of death? Adventist Today is pleased to release a new book by David Neff, the former editor of Christianity Today. By the working of His Spirit in us, we are able, to some degree, to live a godly life (see Romans 8:1-17). This is resting in Him, or we might even say, abiding in Him (see John 15:1-14). Click the cover below to learn how you can receive,  There’s a vulnerability of love for God […],  A new year gives us a new start. The “rest” we are talking about is not the kind that you find a couple of weeks in the summer, in a hammock, or in bed. 30 For my yoke is easy to bear, and my load is not hard to carry” (Matthew 11:28-30). Do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion, they did not join in with those who heard it in faith, since they were not united with those who heard it in faith, because they were not united by faith with those who listened, because it was not united by faith in those who heard, not being mixed with faith in those who heard, I will never leave you and I will never abandon you, he who is coming will arrive and not delay, Near to the Heart of God – A Study of the Book of Hebrews. Well, the warning certainly becomes more personal with the rendering of the NIV. To the first Sabbath day when God rested and called all creation “very good.” But they’re still confused. Hebrews 4 looks both backward and forward—backward to Creation and forward to the final Sabbath rest. We have this hope as an anchor of the soul. As it says, “Oh, that today you would listen as he speaks!Do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion” (Hebrews 3:15, referring to Psalm 95:7b). Their prison is only in their own minds, yet they are in that prison; and so afraid of being taken in that they cannot be taken out.'”[2]. The Book of Hebrews begins with the declaration that while God has spoken in various ways through the Old Testament prophets, He has now spoken fully and finally in His Son (Hebrews 1:1-4). Sixth, God was angry with this generation, and this resulted in their death in the wilderness (which is exactly what they asked for – Numbers 14:2), and thus their failure to enter into rest. 23 But I see a different law in my members waging war against the law of my mind and making me captive to the law of sin that is in my members. 4 They tie up heavy loads, hard to carry, and put them on men’s shoulders, but they themselves are not willing even to lift a finger to move them” (Matthew 23:1-4). For I do not do what I want – instead, I do what I hate. The first understanding is reflected by the translation of the NASB; the second by the translation of the NIV. We are not that different from those ancient Israelites. The first is the superiority of the Son – Jesus Christ – to Moses. Hebrews is a commentary basically on Leviticus and compares the things of the law with Christ showing he is superior to what God gave through Moses. 14 You are the light of the world. (Romans 7:15-24). Aren’t you more valuable than they are? God’s creation was finished. The NET Bible provides us with the most literal translation of verse 8. But the word translated “rest” in Hebrews 4:9 Hebrews 4:9There remains therefore a rest to the people of God.American … So God again ordains a certain day, “Today,” speaking through David after so long a time, as in the words quoted before, “O, that today you would listen as he speaks! -Hebrews 4:6–11 There was more to this promise than what the day—or even as we’ll see, what the Promised Land—would give. A Sabbath-Rest for the People of God 4 Therefore, since the promise of entering his rest still stands, let us be careful that none of you be found to have fallen short of it. This chapter has often been used by Adventists as a proof text for the continuity of Sabbath-keeping after Christ’s death, but that was not Paul’s intent. The children try to convince them they are surrounded by flowers in a green, sunlit meadow—even hand them violets to prove it, but they believe the violets are foul-smelling refuse. 4:7). We need to believe in God’s Word: 10 “Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to them. Other translations render this verse differently: For indeed we have had good news preached to us, just as they also; but the word they heard did not profit them, because it was not united by faith in those who heard (NASB, emphasis mine). Which of these does Paul cite as the reason Israel could not enter God’s rest? 20 For no one is declared righteous before him by the works of the law, for through the law comes the knowledge of sin. 37 For just a little longer and he who is coming will arrive and not delay. The NET Bible remains somewhat neutral by rendering the verse literally, allowing the reader to go either way. In addition, anyone who wants to share the Bible with others can print unlimited copies and give them away free to others. For the Christian, there is not only the rest of salvation, but the day-to-day rest of dependence upon God for living the Christian life. This is not the kind of “rest” we will be talking about in this lesson. The meaning of Hebrews 4:9 then is, “So then, there remains a Sabbath rest for the people of God” (English Standard Version). 3:8-11). If only 5% of those who take a pill have their hair fall out, then I conclude that it probably won’t happen to me, especially if the pill will fulfill all the promises that are made concerning its benefits. We cleaned the student union center from midnight Friday night to 8 a.m. Saturday morning. 13 But exhort one another each day, as long as it is called “Today,” that none of you may become hardened by sin’s deception (Hebrews 3:12-13). The Sabbath rest in Hebrews 4:9–10 is not simply a cessation of activity (Heb. The ancient Israelites, even though they had the Sabbath, did not enter the rest he is talking about. The writer to the Hebrews exhorts his readers to “enter in” to the Sabbath rest provided by Christ. There is also “God’s rest,” which will be more fully explained in chapter 4. 27 And which of you by worrying can add even one hour to his life? Hebrews 4:9 “ There remaineth therefore a [Sabbath] rest to the people of God. The ancient Israelites, along with those who lived in the days of the psalmist, had the promise of rest, a rest which could only be attained by faith. This makes the weekly Sabbath a metaphor of the Genesis “rest” of God, as was the Canaan rest. in 1971. The fault was not in the doctrines or the rituals, which were ordained by God. There are two keys to understanding the argument of chapters 3 and 4. ” Parentheses are added. I am thinking here of the rebellion of Korah, Dathan, and Abiram in Numbers 16:1-35. Which raises the question whether there remains a Sabbath rest for the people of God. Surely his method of interpreting and applying Scripture is instructive to us as to how we should understand and apply Hebrews 3 and 4 today. And they raised golden goblets of rich red wine to their lips and said ‘Ugh! That is the true Sabbath rest. The pain of being ostracized or even thrown out of the synagogues must have been intense. 20 Now if I do what I do not want, it is no longer me doing it but sin that lives in me. The sin of the Israelites is vividly illustrated in C.S. Hebrews 4 is the definitive passage regarding Jesus as our Sabbath rest. Instead, there was something far more deadly. English Standard Version So then, there remains a Sabbath rest for the people of God, ... Hebrews 4:8 For if Joshua had given them rest, God would not have spoken later about another day. But they cannot recognize they are free. And then simply trust in the only provision God has made for sinners to be forgiven and to enter into His rest. 25 God publicly displayed him at his death as the mercy seat accessible through faith. God’s rest is righteousness “by grace, though faith.” It means throwing ourselves into the arms of God with complete abandon, like a weary child into his father’s arms, trusting implicitly that He will hold us up. Second, these verses address the danger of falling back into Judaism. 24 Wretched man that I am! “‘Aslan,’ said Lucy through her tears, ‘could you—will you—do something for these poor dwarfs?’, “‘Dearest,’ said Aslan, ‘I will show you both what I can, and what I cannot, do.’ He came close to the dwarfs and gave a low growl: low, but it set all the air shaking. It requires not only initial faith on our part, but on-going faith. Sonja DeWitt is a civil rights attorney with over 20 years of experience handling Equal Employment Opportunity cases. 5 For those who live according to the flesh have their outlook shaped by the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit have their outlook shaped by the things of the Spirit. 7 And so, since we have been justified by his grace, we become heirs with the confident expectation of eternal life” (Titus 3:4-7). The Hebrew writer places side by side, three passages of scripture to do with God’s rest. But how can one be guilty of the sins of a bygone generation? This is not the kind of “rest” we will be talking about in this lesson. Speaking of beds, have you noticed how often mattresses are advertised on T.V.? This rest for God's people is what was promised throughout the entire Old Testament. But the Dwarfs said to one another, ‘Hear that? But there must also be what we might call a “sanctification rest,” a rest from striving as Christians in the power of the flesh, in a futile effort to attain godliness. Does debt affect giving in modern times in light of the Israelite tithe and slaves? There is surely a “salvation rest,” a resting from our works in an effort to earn God’s favor, when we come to faith in the finished work of the Lord Jesus on the cross of Calvary. This in turn implies that “There remains a sabbath rest for the people of God” (Heb. Just as the psalmist could seize upon the term “today” and apply it to his readers, so God has fixed a “today” for us, the same “today” as was offered in the psalms. Hebrews 4 offers true Sabbath rest for the people of God through faith in Christ. This is the key to fruitfulness. We do not labor to find favor with God through acts of our own personal merit, but rather we trust in the acceptance and love of God given to us in Yeshua. Text: Comments 1 ¶ Let us therefore fear, lest, a promise being left us of entering into his rest, any of you should seem to come short of it. On one particular Friday night, one of the members of our work crew wasn’t to be found, so we decided to search the building to find him. The author is not interested in a day of the week — he is concerned about how people respond to Jesus. The symbolic nature of the Sabbath had been completely reversed. 31:13). And there is the “rest” which was available to those whom the author of Hebrews was writing in his day: Therefore we must be wary that, while the promise of entering his rest remains open, none of you may seem to have come short of it (Hebrews 4:1, emphasis mine). Q. Do not harden your hearts” (Hebrews 4:7, referring once again to Psalm 95:7b). 36 For you need endurance in order to do God’s will and so receive what is promised. 3 For God achieved what the law could not do because it was weakened through the flesh. Paul explains that God’s rest means ceasing from “our works”—our own righteousness—and trusting God to do for us what we cannot do for ourselves. Belief in God’s Word is the key to “rest” (4:3), just as “unbelief” is the reason why men fail to enter into God’s rest (3:19). This kind of faith is encouraged and stimulated by our association with others who share the same faith (4:2). And now, Paul says, “there remains a Sabbath rest for the people of God” (Heb. Instead, the Psalm he quotes refers to Massah and Meribah, where Israel demanded water from God (Ps. 21 So, I find the law that when I want to do good, evil is present with me. The Dwarfs are for the Dwarfs.’“, “‘You see,’ said Aslan. Q. How could one ever please God by the works of the law? That rest was not merely the rest of possessing the Promised Land, but a great rest, a “sabbath rest.” The source of this rest is God, who after having completed the work of creation, rested on the seventh day. We are not presented here with something that will be ours only when we 'get to heaven'. God’s Word is the Father’s full and final revelation through the Son, the crowning conclusion to previous revelations through the prophets (1:1-4). 28 Why do you worry about clothing? For example, when Christ died as the sacrificial Lamb and the temple curtain was torn from top to bottom, it signaled the end of the sacrificial system. A few observations of these verses will prove helpful when we come to our text in chapter 4. We can see from the incidents underlying Psalm 95 that neither the first generation of Israelites nor Moses himself entered into the rest God had for them. Paul grounds his argument in the story of creation which the readers had known well since childhood. 10 But if Christ is in you, your body is dead because of sin, but the Spirit is your life because of righteousness. But it wasn’t much use. 2 For we had good news proclaimed to us just as they did. Hebrews 4:9, NASB: "Consequently, there remains a Sabbath rest for the people of God." If the danger facing the Hebrews was drifting from Christ and the New Covenant and falling back into Judaism and the Old Covenant, then verses 7-19 deal with this issue. But Hebrews 4 assures the Jewish readers that the Sabbath rest remains. The Israelites refused to believe in the fatherly love that had surrounded and shielded them, clothed them and fed them, for long weary years in the desert. 16 But if I do what I don’t want, I agree that the law is good. The writer to the Hebrews begins his discussion of God’s rest in chapter 3, where he references the Israelites wandering in the desert. We will conclude with some areas of application. (verse 11) Verse 9 states: But God has promised us a Sabbath when we will rest, even though it has not yet come. 52 Which of the prophets did your ancestors not persecute? 4:2). And there is the eternal rest which all Christians will experience. 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