Saturday, June 6, 2015
To whom was God speaking when He took an oath that they would never enter His rest? Wasn’t it the people who disobeyed Him? (Hebrews 3:18 NLT)
We have no right to go to the unsaved and bid them come to Christ and find rest until and unless we ourselves know that rest. Our testimony and our ministry is jeopardized, weakened, limited and discredited if we are not ourselves in rest; and this is the object of the enemy's activity in this matter – to discredit us by taking from us that very birthright of our union with Him Who is never perturbed, never anxious, never in doubt as to the issue, the One Who reigns. You see, rest is the practical outworking of our belief that He is Lord, and the very Lordship of Christ is struck at by the unrest of the people of God....
Do not think that it is necessarily such-and-such things that account for our condition. These may be contributing factors, they may be very testing, may bear upon us very heavily. Physical matters – yes, they do press, they do make the situation exceedingly difficult, they do make a difference. Circumstances in which we have to live our lives, they do make a lot of difference, they make the situation exceedingly difficult. We say, "If only the Lord would deal with this physical matter or these circumstances or this something else! It is all due to that, that is the cause of it, the reason for it." That is our way of reasoning, but it is not the Lord's thought at all. The thing is deeper down than that, and it is simply a matter of believing God; resolute faith, confidence in God. The Lord is trying to get us out of our variable and varying soul life where we are at the mercy of all our feelings, thoughts and reasonings and all that kind of thing, into a realm where, in spirit, we are steadfast. That is the point upon which it is all fixed in the Psalm. "Their heart was not steadfast with Him" (Psa. 78:37), and around that the whole of their forty years is gathered. The key to this is spiritual; tested by every other line, every other means, it is a spiritual matter ultimately. To be strengthened with might by His Spirit in the inward man (Eph. 3:16) is the answer to it all.
By T. Austin-Sparks from: The Rest and the Courage of Faith
This photograph is by Eric Jonas Swensson of Sound Shore Media.