There remains, then, a Sabbath-rest for the people of God; for anyone who enters God’s rest also rests from their works, just as God did from his. (Hebrews 4:9-10)
Here’s a great question: If God is omnipotent, possessing all the power in the universe, how are we to understand what we read in Genesis 2:2—that God rested on the seventh day of creation? Please read on and be greatly encouraged today.
Perhaps the simplest answer to that question is this:
- God stopped His doing, but He never stopped His displaying.
- God stopped creating, but He never stopped His sustaining.
God was not “tired,” as if His strength and power had diminished in any way over the previous six days of creation. After six days of work, you and I are tired and need rest, but never our God. Isaiah exulted, “The everlasting God, the Lord, the Creator of the ends of the earth, neither faints nor is weary” (Isaiah 40:28), and Jesus declared, “My father is always at his work to this very day, and I too am working” (John 5:17).
So what does it mean to rest in the One who never rests?
Everyday Rest – The first rest we are to understand is the rest we received when we trusted in Jesus Christ for our salvation. When we are raised from death to life by grace through faith, we are immediately and forevermore given a rest from our self-salvation project because of the finished work of our Lord. We can stop trying to save ourselves because God in Christ has saved us. We no longer have to try to work ourselves into God’s favor because Jesus has already done this for us on our behalf. We are free from the works of the Law because Jesus has obeyed the Law perfectly on our behalf. Our doing is to be exchanged for our devotion as we work out our salvation (Philippians 2:12) in the strength of the grace that saved us.
But that’s not all . . .
Eternal Rest – The second and final rest we are to understand is the rest that we will receive on the other side of the grave—the life that awaits us in glory when we stand before the face of God. This is the life where all of our rebellion will be removed, our sin slain, and our disobedience turned into divine devotion. We will, for the very first time, be fully resting in the promises of God.
So regardless of where this message finds you today, whether you may be tired or utterly exhausted, cheer up! Look to your Lord and enter into your everyday rest by resting in your redemption—the finished work of Jesus Christ. And when you find yourself up against it—tired, weary, and heavy laden—look beyond the horizon to the promised rest that awaits you in heaven. It won’t be long now, even if you live to be 100.
This is the Gospel. This is grace for your race. NEVER FORGET THAT . . . AMEN!