Hebrews 4:1 (TPT) Now God has offered to us the same promise of entering into his realm of resting in confident faith. So we must be extremely careful to ensure that we all embrace the fullness of that promise and not fail to experience it.
When the children of Israel were delivered from the bondage of Egypt, God promised that His Presence would go with them and give them rest (Exodus 33:14). In Hebrew, the word “rest” in this Scripture is nuwach which has the concept of settling down, dwelling, and remaining. No longer would they be strangers in the land of their affliction nor would they be strangers in this new land where their father Abraham was a sojourner; God was bringing them to a place they could call home and the place that He would abide with them.
In Hebrews 4, Paul alludes to this concept in light of the redemption that Christ has brought us. He warns the redeemed not to follow in the pattern of those who wandered in the wilderness and miss out on the rest that Christ has purchased for us. But what does this rest in Christ look like? A clue can be found in the two types of rest that Paul alludes to.
Not only does Paul mention a nuwach type of rest (being settled, dwelling, and remaining in a place) but also another Hebrew word for rest, shabath. Shabath implies a sense of completion; God began the process of creation on the first day, and it was on the seventh day that He stopped creating because His work was complete. Nothing else need be added, so God could sit down and appreciate all that He had done.
We are being called to find our resting place in Christ. Just as the Israelites were redeemed and removed from Egypt, we too have been redeemed from the power of sin and bondage through the Cross. God is saying, “It is finished! It is complete! And your Promised Land of rest in the Everlasting Arms is accessible now in the land of the living!” When God promised the Israelites rest, technically the battle for the Promised Land was still in sight for them; but they allowed their fear over those looming battles to prevent them from attaining God’s promise. From their perspective, their redemption and fight for freedom wasn’t complete.
Therefore, we must be careful to resist the urge to let the battle against the flesh keep us from entering into our resting place in God. For the beautiful part of our redemption is that God comes into His rest with us as well. Just as the throne of God and His dwelling Presence went with the Israelites in the wilderness and into the Land, so God’s abiding Presence keeps us at every step. The battles ahead are already won. The only effort required on our part is to listen to the direction of the Holy Spirit. It is our redeemer who will do all the work and all of the fighting on our behalf. It is God alone who is responsible for bringing us into our completeness and fullness of Christ.
Exodus 33:14 (NKJV) And He said, “My Presence will go [with you], and I will give you rest.”
At the end of Numbers 6, we find what is referred to as the “Aaronic Blessing.” In the Voice translation it reads, “The Eternal One bless and keep you. May He make His face shine upon you and be gracious to you. The Eternal lift up His countenance to look upon you and give you peace.” (Numbers 6:24-26) What we see in this blessing, is the radical impact of the face and countenance of God. Continue reading “God’s Radiant Countenance (Numbers 6)”
There was once a point in my walk when I was afraid to have a throne room encounter with God. I was still healing from a broken sense of identity at that time, so I was certain that an encounter with Him would “put me in my place.” Certainly, the presence of the flawless Eternal One would only confirm the sense of unworthiness I felt on the inside. Yet nothing could have been further from the truth. Continue reading “A Throne-Room Perspective”
Leviticus 25:10 (VOICE) When the 50th year arrives, sanctify it and declare liberty throughout the land for all who live there— dramatic, radical liberty for all. It is to be your jubilee year. Each of you is allowed to go back to the land that belonged to your ancestors; and each of you may return to your own family.
Beloved, there is dramatic, radical liberty available to all in Me. Refuse to settle for anything less. I AM YHVH El-Ashiyb – the Lord God Restorer, and I do nothing halfway. Look to Me for complete deliverance, for I AM able.
Behold, I AM realigning things as they are supposed to be. Stand at the ready and be expectant, turn your face to Me, for I AM the God of the impossible because nothing is impossible for Me.
Song of Songs 2:11-12 (TPT) The season has changed, the bondage of your barren winter has ended, and the season of hiding is over and gone. The rains have soaked the earth and left it bright with blossoming flowers. The season for singing and pruning the vines has arrived. I hear the cooing of doves in our land, filling the air with songs to awaken you and guide you forth.
Beloved, it’s time. You’ve prepared and you’ve waited – longing even for the new season, and now it’s time. Without hesitation step forward in full confidence that I AM leading and you are ready.
So with Me by your side and your hand in Mine, walk with Me into what lies ahead. For though the cost has been high, the wait will be worth it. Rejoice, beloved, and embrace the new.
Psalm 89:14 (GW) Righteousness and justice are the foundations of your throne. Mercy and truth stand in front of you.
Beloved, I AM the righteous judge. I alone see rightly for I am intimately acquainted with the actions and heart motivations of men. Ask Me for wisdom. Ask Me for insight. Strive to see as I see.
Bring forth justice in the earth. Pray for it. Facilitate it. Make wrong things right – even in the small things, even in the things with no legal consequence – remember that I see differently than you and My understanding of justice is unique.
Stand for righteousness. Stand for truth. Stand for integrity. Stand for honor. Stand for respect. Stand for that which is right. Align with justice and be a voice for it in the earth.
Psalm 142:4 (GW) Look to my right and see that no one notices me. Escape is impossible for me. No one cares about me.
Beloved, though there may be times you feel overlooked, unseen, unimportant, and worthless, those feelings are not communicating truth to you. Refuse to take the bait. The enemy seeks to convince you of these things, but he is a liar and the father of lies.
Remember that David, a man after My own heart, a man quoted and beloved, a man still inspiring multitudes hundreds of years later felt the same way. You never know the full impact your life and actions have.
So keep your eyes and heart fixed on Me. Focus on obedience, and knowing and loving My Word. Abide with Me, and allow a life cultivated in that fertile soil to bear fruit and do so abundantly. Continue reading “Refuse to Take the Bait”