Rest

Rest

Scripture: Mark 2:27-28, Genesis 2:2-3, Exodus 31:12-13
Date: 05/23/2009  Lesson: 8
Sabbath is not only a sign between God and His people, but it also provides rest and physical relief from the stresses of life.

Feast Days: Shadows of Our Faith by Herbert Douglass

Feast Days: Shadows of Our Faith by Herbert Douglass
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Good morning and Happy Sabbath. It is may here in southern--southern? In sunny California. And the trees are in bloom. Everything is green. And it is spring here.

And we are loving, especially on Sabbath when we can come and worship our creator that made these incredible colors for us to enjoy. We welcome you that are here in our audience with us this morning, here worshipping with us. We welcome you that are joining us from across the country and around the world on this bright Sabbath, through television, the internet, radio, however you're joining us, welcome. And we trust that you will truly be blessed. Our song service this morning, we'll start with hymn number 192, "o shepherd divine.

" And this comes as a request from kerry, margaret and emily in australia, frank in Arizona, damien in barbados, monique and amryll in Canada, rick and rachel in florida, bella in Hawaii, rob in Indiana, jean in Massachusetts, sandra and marilyn in Michigan, joanne in South Dakota, and al in tennessee. "O shepherd divine," and we'll sing all three verses. [Music] I love that line in the second verse that says, "thy great heart was broken for me." So many times we on earth here feel so broken-hearted. Things don't go our way or something happens. And we experience so many trials.

And we can truly know that Jesus' heart was broken. And he was crushed for our sins. And what a blessing. And what a promise that he is coming soon to take all those hurts and all that pain away. And we will be free from it forever.

Praise the Lord. If you have a special song you would like us to sing with you on a coming Sabbath, I invite you to go to our website at saccentral.org, and click on the "contact us" link. And you can request any hymn in the hymnal. And we'd love to sing with you and learn with you new hymns and sing those on a coming Sabbath with you. Our next hymn is "joyful, joyful we adore thee," hymn number 12.

This comes from clinon and ilja in australia, autumn in California, ginalyn in denmark, adesh, sanny, sherace and Simon in england, Joel in florida, george in germany, shelly and shavanie in jamaica, tina in Montana, fred and mead in Philippines, courine in saint vincent in the grenadines, raymond in Virginia, eileen in Washington, and muyunda and lisa in zambia. Hymn number 12, "joyful, joyful, we adore thee." And we'll sing the first, second, and third verses. [Music] Let's pray. Dear Lord, we come humbly before you on this blessed Sabbath day. What a gift this day is to us.

We thank you that we can come securely, and we can come freely before you to worship you. We ask you to, please Lord, infuse our hearts with your love. Truly help us to love each other. Help us to put forth your love as we come in contact with others, that we can show them who you are, not ourselves, but who you are and that you have saved them. Please be with our speaker today as he brings us Your Word, Lord.

I just ask you to open our hearts and our minds to you so that you flow right through us to others. I pray these things in your precious name, Jesus. Amen. This morning our lesson study will be brought to us by don mackintosh who is the director of afcoe, here in Sacramento. Good morning, everyone.

I think this is on. Alright, good. Good morning again. And good to see you this morning. Look at that person next to you and if it is good to see them, say, "it's good to see you.

" That's good. Some of you were a little nervous there, but--no you weren't. I'm glad that you're with us today, this morning here in Sacramento and wherever you're watching. We've been studying in this quarter, "the Christian life," various topics over the last 8 weeks. And it's a delight today to be able to talk about one topic that I think is probably special to all of us.

And that is the topic of "rest." How many of you slept well last night? I know I had one member at one of my churches that said, "no, I didn't, but I plan to sleep through your sermon." [Laughs] so and you know he worked all night and I was just glad he was there and that he could come. And sometimes he would stay awake even. Our free offer today that we want to just mention to you at the beginning before I forget it is going to be a little book, "why God said 'remember,'" "why God said 'remember,'" excEllent little book by Joe Crews and wonderful chapters, "what could he do?" "Creation," "the Mark of God's sovereignty," "conversion," "creative power at work," "the battle over authority." A lot of people wonder even if they should trust the Bible, so, you know, why would the Sabbath even be important? "The test point of the law." We're gonna study about that today, that the Sabbath is really a testing, defining truth. Well, let's just begin today with a word of prayer. And then we'll look at our lesson together.

Let's just bow our heads and pray together. Father in Heaven, we're thankful today that you are our father, and that there is a heaven, and that you can draw near to us, that there is a voice from above, that you have revealed yourself not only in nature, but in Your Word. So we ask, Lord, that you would speak with us today, draw near to us through the agency of your spirit. You've said Your Words are spirit and they're life. And fill us with spirit and life today.

In Christ's name, amen. There were a number of questions that were posed in this week's lesson. And they were all so just amazing that I realized that I probably could not cover every single question in the time we have together. But, you know, there was one question. First of all, maybe our memory verse would be good here.

The memory verse, did anyone memorize it? "The Sabbath was made for man, and not man for the Sabbath. So The Son of man is Lord even of the Sabbath," Mark 2:27-28. So there were many texts. It said that--the lesson said that we should study Genesis 2:2-3. It said we should study Deuteronomy 5:12-13.

And we should compare that with Exodus 20. Alright. It said that we should study Isaiah 58. We should study Ezekiel 20:12 and Hebrews 4:9-11. And then it had a set of questions.

I don't know about you, but I looked down there in the lesson. I say, "what do they really want us to focus in at the end of the day. Well, there's five questions, "the week at a glance:" "why is the Sabbath so important for us?" "Why did God institute the Sabbath?" "What is holy time?" "Who or what makes the Sabbath holy?" "How can we make Sabbath-keeping a delight and meaningful experience?" So those are the types of things that we're to cover today. And I thought, you know, what we really should do is maybe just focus in on one of those texts. And I want to focus today on Hebrews 4, Hebrews 4.

So look with me at Hebrews 4. This was really Thursday's lesson. But I'll go back and touch on the other days if you forgive me, okay. I'll go back and touch on the other days as we look here at Thursday's lesson, Hebrews 4. And they specifically ask in the lesson that we focus on verse 9-11, Hebrews 4:9-11.

"There remains therefore a rest for the people of God. For he who has entered his rest has himself also ceased from his works as God did from his. Let us therefore be diligent to enter that rest, lest anyone fall after the same example of disobedience." And I'm gonna add verse 12, "for the Word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart." Fascinating passage, isn't it? Now let's just go through it. And it'll help us touch on the rest. "There remains," the text starts.

When it says, "there remains," what does that lead you to believe? That there was something, what? Already there. When you see some remains by the side of the road, that means there was a creature or something else that was already there. Right? It remains. In other words, it was already there. It's not something newly appropriated.

It's not something that, you know, some will read Hebrews and say, "it's just a new thing here." No. It's already there. It remains. It's not a new day. It's not a new Sabbath day.

"There remains," it says. And you know our topic today in the lesson it says is "rest," but specifically Sabbath rest. There remains. Now you've gotta think about this. This book was written to who? The Hebrews.

Who were the Hebrews? They were the Hebrews. Right? And they were wondering: what remains? They were the believers in Christ and they said, "what remains of what we've known? What's left behind?" So this is God's left-behind series. Right? Hebrews 1, 2, 3, 4, all the way through Hebrews it's saying what remains, what's left behind, what is it that we focus on now? "Change is hard, but I want you to understand, Hebrews, that there's something that remains." There's a day that remains for--now when did the Sabbath originate? On our first day of the week, when we studied, we're asked to look at Genesis 2:2-3. Maybe someone wants to read that, Genesis 2:2-3. Anyone here reading today? Do we have a microphone.

Right up here, right up front. Genesis 2:2-3, right here in the gray, read that for us. "And on the seventh day God ended his work which he had made, and he rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had made. And God blessed the seventh day and sanctified it, because that in it he had rested from all his work which God created and made." Okay, so, according to Genesis, this day of rest originated where? At creation, in creation. "For in six days the Lord made everything," it says in Exodus 20.

And it's saying, look, he made it, everything. And on the seventh day he finished. In other words, it wasn't finished until that seventh day. It wasn't ended. It was part of that, that week, the seven-day cycle.

So the Sabbath then originated way back there in creation. And as we look back in Hebrews 4, I want you to notice a couple things, Hebrew 4. In Hebrews 4, there are different rests that you find in the chapter. There's the rest looking forward to canaan. There's the rest that is a salvation rest.

"Come unto me, ye who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest." Right? Matthew 11:28. And then there is the Sabbath rest. And it's explicitly mentioned there in verse 4. "He has spoken in a certain place of the seventh day in this way: 'and God rested on the seventh day from all his works.'" So, "there remains," Hebrews 4:9 says, "there remains therefore a rest," a rest. And look at another text, verse 8, "for if--" now if you're reading maybe the King James version, it probably says, "Jesus.

" That's unfortunate if it says that in your translation. It really should be "Joshua," same word. "For if Joshua had given them rest, then he would not afterward have spoken of another day." So Joshua here is pictured as asking them to enter into rest. You know, in the Bible, the word "rest" I believe is used most prominently like in the book of Kings. But I think number two it is, is Joshua.

He's always talking about entering into this rest and that rest. And it was the rest of the land. In other words, resting in canaan, going towards that canaan land. And Joshua of course kept the same Sabbath day that they kept back there in Genesis. So it's the same Sabbath that remains that was in Genesis.

It's the same Sabbath that Joshua kept. And it's the same Sabbath that God's people were supposed to have kept, but they did not. Look at chapter 4:11, "let us therefore be diligent to enter that rest, lest anyone fall after the same example of," what does it say? "Disobedience." Now in our lesson they made a big point of this. They said, "read Ezekiel 20:20-21." So I'm gonna have someone read that because this whole idea--you know, many times we say that, Sabbath was for the jews. And the jews were to keep that.

And they kept it." Exodus--i mean, excuse me-- Ezekiel 20:20-21, right here. Ezekiel 20:20, "and hallow my Sabbaths, and they shall be a sign between me and you, that you may know that I am the Lord your God." And verse 21. Verse 21, "neither withstanding, the children rebelled against me; they walk not in my statutes, neither kept my judgments to do them, which if a man do, he shall even live in them; they polluted my Sabbaths: then I said, I would pour out my fury upon them, to accomplish my anger against them in the wilderness." Did you catch the point there? The first verse that we read in Ezekiel 20:20 said, "hallow my Sabbaths, they will be a sign between me and you, that you will know that I'm your God." In other words, you'll know who I am. And in chapter 20:13-14, "you'll know who you are." You'll know that I sanctify you, right? So this was a sign of identity. But the problem is, the problem is it says verse 21, "but they profaned my Sabbaths.

" In other words, they didn't keep them. So back there in the wilderness and back in the time of Ezekiel, they were not doing what? They were not keeping the Sabbath day. They were profaning it. What does profane mean? "Pro" means in front of, "fanu" means the sanctuary. In other words, they were putting something in front of God's sanctuary service, in front of his salvation.

In fact in Ezekiel 8, it shows like 20 or 25 of these folks with their backs towards the sanctuary, worshipping the sun. They said, "give us Sunday instead of his day." You see? And so here they were profane. They were polluting it. And this is why the author of Hebrews says, "they did not enter into my rest." They didn't enter it. They were disobedient.

And he's warning these folks in the book of Hebrews. He says, "I don't want that to happen to you. This is to be a sign between me and you. You'll know that I'm your God. And you'll know that I'm the one who sanctifies you, because you really can't keep it on your own unless I give you the strength and power to do that.

" Amen? So this is the picture that's given. Now let me ask this question again; who was the book of Hebrews written to? The Hebrews. You guys are waking up this morning. That's right. The book of Hebrews was written to the Hebrews.

And who were the Hebrews? Those were God's people, chosen people, ethnically some people say. Others say by experience, right? I would say that probably both can be true for some, but a jew was not one outwardly, but inwardly. And "circumcision is of the heart," it says in Romans. And it says in Jeremiah 4:4. Right? So this whole idea was this was written for the Hebrews.

Now when was the book of Hebrews written? When was it written? Anyone have an idea? It was actually written about 30 years, a little bit greater than years after Christ's death. And when did Christ die? What year did Christ die? Anyone remember that? Remember that famous prophecy seven sevens. You know, seven is the day of rest. Seventy times seven. When did Christ die? Does anyone want to hazard a guess here? Or you probably know.

A.d., I heard it. Good Bible students here. So you add 30 or 31, 35 years to 30, what do you have? , 65, 66. Let me ask you a question. What was soon to happen to Jerusalem? When was it destroyed? .

Now do you get the picture in Hebrews what's happening? Hebrews is this last, it's a book of last day events to the Hebrews who are living in Jerusalem. He's saying, "look, your city is about to fall. And you have not yet entered into the Sabbath the way you should. There remains therefore a Sabbath. And you're not entering into it.

You haven't really entered into the joy of it. Back then you were totally ignoring it. Now you're legalistically entering into it and causing it to be a great burden." And he says, "no, don't do that. Don't be involved in this." You see Hebrews was written about the same time, released about the same time as Matthew 24 was. Remember Matthew 24? It talked about two things.

Well look at Matthew 24 with me. And let's just look at that for a moment. Matthew 24. And let's look together. Matthew 24, "then Jesus went out and departed from the temple, and his disciples came to him," and said--and he showed them the buildings of the temple.

"To show him the buildings of the temple." And he said-- "Jesus said to them," verse 2, "do you not see all these things? Assuredly, I say to you, not one stone will be left here upon another, that will not be thrown down." And so they asked him two questions in verse 3. By the way, that was a powerful temple. It was huge. The rocks were like 30 feet by feet, you know, by 90 feet. These were rocks that no one could move.

You know that in the fall of Jerusalem, the gold went between them. And gold has a way of making people move things that can't be moved. And he was seeing that. He was seeing down to that day. And he said, "there's not gonna be one stone and another.

" And they said, "tell us--" two questions they ask in verse 3, "tell us, when will these things be?" In other words, when will the destruction of Jerusalem be? And then secondly, "and what shall be the sign of your coming?" Two questions are answered in Matthew 24, right? When will these things be? When will Jerusalem fall? And what will be the sign of your coming? Right? Now did you know that what factors big in both answers is the Sabbath? Because he says, "pray that your flight not be in the winter or on the Sabbath day," verse 20. And so you knew that the Sabbath was gonna be in place after Jesus left. And he says, "look, pray that your flight not be in that on that day." Right? Let me show you another thing here. Because this is Jesus speaking, right? Jesus, when he first began his ministry, what did he do? He went to the synagogue on the Sabbath day. Remember that? Now let me show you this.

Look at Luke 4, Luke 4. We'll get back to Hebrews, we're just doing a little excursus here into Luke, the Gospel of light. Luke 4:16, "he came to nazareth, where he had been brought up. And as his custom was, he went into the synagogue on the Sabbath day, and stood up to read." How many think that's a good thing to do? Good thing to read also a good thing to hear, right? "And he was handed the book of the prophet Isaiah. When he opened the book, he found the place where it was written: 'the Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to preach the Gospel to the poor; sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, recovery of sight to the blind, and to set at liberty those who are oppressed; and to--'" what does it say next--? "Preach the acceptable," what? In other words, "this is year that you can accept him.

He's gonna be here." And he says, "today this is fulfilled in your hearing." But he was quoting from where? He was quoting right from the book of--what's it say in your margin? Isaiah 61. Go to Isaiah 61. Keep your finger in Luke, but go to Isaiah 61. Isaiah, look at Isaiah with me. Isaiah 61, turn there quickly.

We don't have a lot of time. Isaiah 61. Let's see what he was quoting. "the Spirit of the Lord is," on me, "upon me," verse 1, "because the Lord has anointed me." By the way, did you know that in Exodus 31:17, it says that the Sabbath is a sign between God and his people. And it's a day that he rested.

God rested. And was refreshed, and that word, refreshed, naphash, means "to be filled with the Spirit." And here he is on the Sabbath. He's saying, "I'm refreshed. I'm filled with the Spirit." "the Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because the Lord has anointed me to preach good tidings to the poor; he has sent me to heal the brokenhearted." Jesus loved to heal on the Sabbath. There are seven Sabbath miracles that he performed on the Sabbath.

"To heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to those who are bound; to proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord." Stop! That's where he stopped the quotation. Did you notice that? What does it say next? "And the day of vengeance of our Lord." In other words, he says, "look, this is the acceptable day of the Lord." And then he stops. He says, "but it's not the day of vengeance." That's he's starting his ministry. When does that day of vengeance come? Look back in Luke, Luke 21. Luke 21, go--let's hasten there, 'cause we have to get back to Hebrews.

Hebrews is probably missing us. Luke 21, Luke 21. Let's see what we find there, Luke 21, Luke 21. Now this is after Jesus--he's looking forward to when Jerusalem would be surrounded by that same army, that same army that he was mentioning in Matthew 24. Look at Luke 21:20, "but when you see," chapter 21:20, "when you see Jerusalem surrounded by armies, then know that its desolation is near.

Then let those in Judea flee to the mountains, let those who are in the midst of her depart, and let not those who are in the country enter her." So this is like, this is the time to move out of the cities, right? This is the time of trouble. Move out of the cities. Right? "For--" now what's he saying next? Verse 22. Remember Luke 21, acceptable year of the Lord. And then it says, "the days of vengeance.

" He didn't read that part, right? "Acceptable year of the Lord." He opens that up on the Sabbath day. And then notice what he says. "When you see the Jerusalem surrounded--" what's it say? Verse 22, "for these are the days of," what? "Vengeance, that all the things which are written may be fulfilled." All things written where Jesus? Things written in Isaiah. You see that? And that's the context of Hebrews. Are you with me? Are you still with me? In other words, Hebrews is right near the end of that.

It's near the days of vengeance. It's not the acceptable year of the Lord anymore. It's the day where, look, you're coming to the end. You're coming to the end, Hebrews. Listen up.

"There remains therefore a rest for the people of God." Listen up. Don't be disobedient. Enter into the Spirit and joy of the Sabbath. "Enter into my grace-filled day by faith." You see the picture? Wow. That's the picture.

It's the sign of his coming. Let's go back to Hebrews now, continue on in our journey. "There remains therefore a rest. That's what we've been looking at, Hebrews 4:9, "for the people of God." No that word, "rest," is very interesting, in fact, there are about three or four different words for rest in Hebrews 4. But this one is actually stellar.

It just kind of pops out because this is what the actual Greek word is, "there remains therefore a sabbatismos." Do you like that? Sabbatismos, which really literally means "a keeping of the Sabbath." So he's writing this when? Thirty years after Christ's death, 35 years, just like Matthew was afterwards. And he's saying, "look, I'm-- Jesus is gone, but there remains therefore a Sabbath-keeping for the people of God. Remember the Sabbath day," the commandment says in Exodus 22. "Keep it holy. It remains.

" By the way, who made it holy? This was part of-- our lesson brought it out. It's the Sabbath of the Lord, right? "Remember the Sabbath day to keep it holy." It's the Sabbath of the Lord. For in six days, the Lord made heaven and the earth, right? It is the Sabbath of the Lord. He made it holy. How many are glad that he made it holy.

Can you make anything holy? But your job is not to make it holy. Your job is to keep it holy. Right? Now you can't even do that without his grace and his strength and his power, right, but you're to keep it holy. My wife's gonna have a baby soon. You know, it's hard to have a baby.

I've never had one, but I've watched it now. This is the fourth baby. It's gonna be the fourth living creature. I was thinking as I studied today, maybe I should call it sabbatismos. Sabbatismos mackintosh.

No, I won't do that to the poor child. But remember the Sabbath day to keep it holy. God made it holy. It's our job to keep it holy by his grace, by his spirit. And that word "keep" is interesting.

It's the word "shamar." Shamar, to keep. You know it was used first in Genesis, I believe 2 and verse 7, where it says they were given a garden and they should dress and keep it. How many of you have ever had a garden? Is it easier to plant a garden or to keep a garden? Is it easier to have a baby or to keep a baby? I'm asking--where's some new parents here? Where are the parents of jack? Is it easier to have a baby or-- you know, I was just looking in this new magazine that's coming out from Amazing Facts called "amazing health: eight secrets for longer and stronger life." And I was reading the section on rest. There's really a whole section on rest. It was really arresting.

I want to encourage you to read it. And it said in there that when someone has a baby, that baby might not get very much sleep, but the parents get even less in the first year. This is what's gonna happen to me. This is probably one of the last restful Sabbaths I'm gonna have for a year, 'cause my wife is due on the 16th, but she's acting like she might even rush things a bit. In fact, I might have to leave any time right now, so listen up.

Alright? But they said in the magazine, in the first year, the adults in the family will lose 600 hours of sleep. How many days is that? I didn't figure it out. But you know, I think grandparents lose sleep too sometimes. They come over and everyone's just not sleeping. And the little demoniac-- well, maybe not that bad.

The little child is taking away rest. But the idea here is, "look, I made it holy, but you keep it." You keep it like you would keep a garden. My children and I just planted some strawberry plants and other plants yesterday. They love planting things. But when I say it's time to weed, it's hard for them to heed.

Right? So this is--how do we keep it holy? There remains therefore a sabbatismos, a Sabbath-keeping. How do we keep it holy? Exodus 20:8-11. How many of you know this text? "Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days shalt thou labor and do all thy work, but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord thy God. In it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor the cattle, nor the stranger that is within thy gates: for in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, and the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day, and made it holy.

" Amen? Now that's--you know, some people say, "oh that's not a very big deal." It's actually the longest commandment in the ten. It is right in the middle. It has more words than any other. And it has who's, what, when, who, where, why and how all right there. It is like a compact picture.

And don't say it doesn't matter. There's a lot of text in the Bible that say if you break it, you die. "The wages of sin is death." It's one of the ten. And some of the people teach it--treat it as though it's, you know, the one that can be done away with, sort of like the appendix of the Ten Commandments, which would no longer be the Ten Commandments. It would be the nine commandments, right? So who's is it? It's the Sabbath of the Lord your God, yahweh your elohim.

In other words, the Lord, the judge, your elohim, the one who delivered you, the mighty covenant maker. He delivered you. He's the one that will judge you in the last day, but he's the one that provided so that you can get through the judgment. He delivered you. Amen? He's the Lord your God.

That's who's it is. What should you do? It says during the week work. "Six days shalt thou labor." You see the Sabbath day is kind of misunderstood. It's really a commandment that deals with the entire week. In fact, in the Hebrew mind, they didn't have days, names for days like we do.

They had day one, day two, day three. And it was literally in their mind day one of the Sabbath, day two of the Sabbath, day three of the Sabbath, day four of the Sabbath, day five of the Sabbath, day six which they called preparation, and then shabbat. So everybody was thinking about it. You know what? I happen to think that if we-- I think there's a lot of Sabbath-breakers, Sabbath commandment breakers today that are not working. And some of it, it's not because of their own choice.

Some people just don't like to work. Have you met these people? You try and get 'em to work, they don't like to work. They don't want to. They want somebody else to work. Right? Now today maybe that's not a problem.

There's many jobs being lost. And I want to be sensitive to that. But that's also a promise. That's a promise. You know, my grandfather, when he first heard this, he went to a sermon.

He went to a sermon. He went to this-- his name's gordon. My middle name's gordon. And he went to the sermon. He was in the middle of Virginia, West Virginia.

And he was working in the steel mine in weirton, West Virginia. And he decided--his friend otto said, "look, you gotta go with me to these meetings. There's this guy preaching. You gotta hear him." So he goes and he goes and you know the story. He went and he went on the night that he was presenting the Mark of the beast.

And everybody goes, "oh, that's terrible." That's not terrible. That's a Bible message. How many think that's a good message to hear? So he went, and he heard that message. He only heard one message; he goes, "man, I've heard a lot of things in my life. I know that's gotta be true.

" So he went home and he said, "I'm keeping the Sabbath day." And that was in the middle of the depression. That was in the '30s. And he had seven kids. I don't think I'm gonna catch up with him. Wait a minute, I'm not gonna catch up with him.

My wife says, "four rhymes with no more." We're only gonna have four living creatures. So anyway, he's right there in the middle of the depression. And he decides to keep the Sabbath. He's driving home and all of his vacation days are gone. And then he loses his job.

And he's walking home now. This lady picks him up and says, "what did you do to lose your job?" He said, "I began to keep the Sabbath because if when the Lord comes and you're not keeping the Sabbath, that's called the Mark of the beast. I don't want to be anywhere near that." And the lady said, "you're a jew! I'm a jew!" She was a Jewish lady. "I'll take care of you." What--make a long story short, grandfather had stepped out in faith. But what happened was people around the community knew it.

And they knew he needed work, so they began to bring him cars and cars, all their cars to fix. Pretty soon he began to fix all their cars. And everybody knew that he was a mechanic that became a mechanic because he lost his job. And he became a mechanic because of the Sabbath. Now what mechanic are you gonna go to if you're driving down the street, and you have a choice of mechanics who keep the Sabbath day verses those who don't, where you gonna go? It was almost as if he had on the front of his shop the Ten Commandments sign.

And the people began to come to his shop. And he began to fix their cars. And then all his boys worked together with him. And some of them even lament that today. One of my uncles was watching, he's going, "it wasn't as good as you're saying.

" But I tell you what, it had an impression on me. And he wanted to witness to those people, so he says, "look, I gotta witness to them." And he said, "I think I'll teach them the tithing principle. If you listen to a Bible study as I give it to you, I'll give you 10% off your car repair." So he would be under the car. He had to memorize all the text. And he would go through all the Bible text as they were sitting there.

And people began to join the church. You see God is faithful. If you keep the Sabbath day, he'll keep you. And that's what grandfather learned. And my other grandfather learned the other thing.

I might have time to tell you the story, but we got 13 minutes. We gotta get back to Hebrews. It's a fascinating story. I wish I could tell it right now, but I can't. So, there remains therefore a rest, a sabbatismos.

Now I want to say one other thing before we get off this Sabbath-keeping. It says, "do your work, but don't work on the Sabbath, you, nor your maidservant, nor manservant, nor the stranger that is within your gates." I think that this is kind of disregarded sometimes. Sometimes it's even disregarded in places like our home. And you know, we have all kinds of strangers coming over. Well, we'll let them work for us.

Sometimes people even get confused. They say, "well, I think I'll go out to eat. I'll have someone else serve me." Folks, what kind of message does that send? Right? I mean the Bible says just bake what you will bake and boil what you boil before. That doesn't mean you can't have hot food. Here in California, it's not a problem.

Just set it outside. Doesn't mean you can't heat it up, but I don't think you should be. I'm gonna tell you, I just--you know, I don't want to be going out to eat, and then people say, "well, what are you doing today?" "Well, it's our Sabbath day. Can I have some more whatever you asked for with that?" That sends the wrong message. The stranger that is within your gates.

You know sometimes even schools could get confused. I heard of a school once. This was actually a sabbatarian school. And there were all these kids. And they were going out to play tennis on Friday night.

And they weren't guarding the edges of the Sabbath from eve unto eve, and say, "thou hallowed my Sabbaths," or keep my Sabbaths, right, like it says there Leviticus. And they weren't doing that. And a new principal came in and he noticed they were playing tennis and they were doing this and doing the other. And he said, "wait a minute. This is a Sabbath-keeping institution.

We need to have a faculty meeting." So he had a faculty meeting. And they took a vote. And they said, "look, we should probably have a compulsory Friday night vespers." I think that's okay. How many think that's okay? The stranger that is within your gates, right? Some people think said, "wait a minute. That's going against freedom of conscience.

" So we read the text. "The stranger that is within thy gates." Strangers don't even know about the Sabbath. But we need to uplift it in our homes, in our institutions, in our churches. Is that right or is that wrong? I mean am I radical? Is that what the text is saying? And guess what? When this man did that-- he told me he did this in this institution. And guess what happened to the institution.

It began to grow and grow and grow. And God blessed it. In fact, today it has one of the highest enrollments because of that. And then he did the same thing in another institution and another institution. Hey look, I think that's a good idea.

What worked for grandfather, works for institutions too. Amen? And by the way, it works for homes. Don't say, "oh my son, daughter, they won't do that. They were out late." Look, the stranger within your gates. You need to take hold of that.

Right? Alright, we better get back to Hebrews. Hebrews 4, "there remains therefore a sabbatismos for the keeping of God." A Sabbath, a Sabbath-keeping for the people of God. Now look back at Hebrews 4:9 again. "There remains therefore a rest," now it says next, "for the people of God." Now someone says, "wait a minute. This is where we get into trouble because the people of God mentioned here are the Hebrews.

And the Hebrews are God's chosen people. You are talking about Jewish things in a Christian church. You're bad, bad, bad, bad, bad, bad." No, no, no, no. What was our memory verse? "The Sabbath was made for man." You know what the word man there is in Greek? Anthropos. It's where we get the word "anthropology.

" How many of you are anthropolic--are men, mankind? Alright. I don't know how to say what I was thinking. That's right. It's made for man. And let's say you did say it was only for the jews.

You know what? The jews were supposed to share it. Look at Isaiah 56:6-7. Actually, look at--man, let's just read as much as we can of Isaiah 56, because I think this will help us. And by the way, I think it's been fairly successful. I'll mention it in a minute.

"Thus saith the Lord: 'keep justice, and do righteousness, for my salvation is about to come," verse 1. "And my righteousness is to be revealed. Blessed is the man who does this, and The Son of man who lays hold of it; and who keeps from defiling the Sabbath, and keeps his hand from doing any evil." "Do not let The Son of the foreigner," of the who? "The stranger within our gates," right? "The foreigner who has joined himself to the Lord speak, saying, 'the Lord has separated me from his people;' nor let the eunuch say, 'I am a dry tree.' For thus saith the Lord: 'to the eunuchs who keep my Sabbaths, and choose what pleases me, and hold fast my covenant, even to them I will give in my house," where? "In my house and within my walls a place and a name better than that of sons or daughters." How many think that's a fascinating thing? So in other words, let's say it is ethnic jews. He says, "no, no. That's fine.

You're supposed to bring other people in." And those people are supposed to be doing what? Keeping the Sabbath. Notice what it says next. "Also The Sons of the foreigner who join themselves to the Lord, to serve him, and to love the name of the Lord, to be his servants, everyone who keeps from defiling," what? "The Sabbath, and holds fast my covenant, even them I will bring to my holy mountain." That's the sanctuary. "And make them joyful in my house of prayer. Their burnt offerings and their sacrifices will be accepted on my altar; for my house shall be called a house of prayer for all," what's it say next? "All nations.

" Does that sound like just jews? No, the Sabbath was made for man. And it's every single man. God's gonna have a people that say the Sabbath's for everyone. And even if the jews say it's not for everyone today, if they're ethnic, God says, "I'll have people that are spiritual jews that say it is for everyone." It'll be a house of prayer for every nation. "the Lord," verse 8, "God gathers the outcasts of Israel, says, 'yes, I will gather to him others besides those who are gathered to him.

'" John 10 says, "other sheep I have which are not of this flock," which are not of this pasture, "them also must I bring." And they'll be on one flock. And they'll be one shepherd. And they'll be one Sabbath day. Amen? So he says, "enter into my rest. There remains therefore a sabbatismos, a Sabbath-keeping for the people of God.

By the way, one thing before I close that. You know, in the old testament, the definition of love is found in the commandments, the second commandment, right? "Visiting the iniquity of The Fathers unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me, but showing mercy unto the thousands of them that," what? "Love me and keep my commandments." But there is one commandment that is specifically tied to love. That one's general, "keep my commandments." But this one is the one that's specifically tied to love. Did you see when we read it right there in verse 6 and 7? "The Sons of the foreigner who join themselves to the Lord, to serve him, and to love the name of the Lord, to be his servants, everyone who keeps from defiling the Sabbath." The definition of love, the commandment that is specifically linked with the word "love," the only one in the old testament is the Sabbath commandment. And Jesus says, "if you love me, keep my commandments.

" It means all of them, but especially it means, guess which one? The Sabbath day. "Enter into my rest." "Enter into my love." "I love you." "Remember." I like--you know, see if I can find this. Here it is. I like this. "When reading a science journal I learned," this is from sang lee.

He used to be the medical director up at weimar. And he was reading a science journal. He says, "I learned that even animals need to rest. They can endure stress as long as the stress was removed every seventh day. And they were allowed to rest.

Recovery from six days of stress was then complete. But if they were not allowed to rest every seventh day, they could not recover of the effects of stress. And they begin to get sick." You know who learned this big time? Joseph stalin and the people in the french revolution. They tried to change the weekday to ten days. They all got sick.

Their animals got sick. Stalin, he said, "I don't even want there to be a weekly cycle that's tied to any one day." Twenty percent of the people be working at all times. He tried that for like 11 years. And all of the horses and cows and animals even got sick. You see? Sabbath commandment is not just some religious thing.

It's a promise. It's a promise of health, spiritually, mentally and physically. "There remains therefore a Sabbath-keeping for the people of God," "for the people of God." Let's go on, verse 10. We better hurry up. Verse 10, Hebrews 4:10, "there remains therefore a Sabbath-keeping for the--" "there remains therefore," a sabbatismos, "a rest for the people of God.

For he who has entered his rest has also himself ceased from his works as God did from his." Now let's break this down. "For he," verse 10 says, "who has entered his rest." Now that word "rest" is not sabbatismos. It doesn't say, "he that has entered into the Sabbath-keeping there." It doesn't say that. It's a different word for rest, kataposis is what it is. It's different.

Actually when you read it through the new testament, it is the rest that is used--that's indicative of conversion. It's when you enter into not your works, but his work. You're not saved by your works, but his working in you. You enter into rest. So don't miss the point here.

"For he who has entered his rest," really means conversion rest, like Matthew 11:28, "I will give you rest." So in other words, you could say it this way, "for he," the person that has entered his rest, the person who is converted. That's what that means, chapter 4:10, for he that is converted. By the way, Hebrews 4:2, look at it with me. "For indeed the Gospel was preached to us," saying, Paul, who I believe is the author of Hebrews, "was preached to us," and to the Hebrews that are Christians there, "as well as to them," talking about the old testament, "but the word which they heard did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in those who heard it." In other words, get the point, he's saying, "look, this was preached to the Hebrews." The Gospel was preached to them and to us. And there was no problem with the Gospel message.

They saw who Christ was. What's the Gospel? It's what causes us to be converted, right? But most of them didn't get it. There's just a few. Abraham, The Father of the faithful, all those different ones who got the faith issue. By the way, how do we know if we have faith? Romans 1:5, Romans 16:26 has this phrase: "obedience to the faith.

" Have you heard that phrase before? So what he's saying here is what? They didn't enter into it. They didn't enter into the Gospel experience. But "he who has entered his rest," he who is converted, will do something. What does it say? Verse 10, last part, "for he who has entered his rest has himself also ceased from his works as God did from his." Now look at this. Look at this.

This is our last thing. Don't forget our free offer, those watching on, our little book, "God said--" "why God said 'remember.'" But we gotta get back to this. Look at this. Hebrews 4:10, "for he who has entered his rest," in other words, the one who that's converted, "has himself also ceased from his works as God did from his." You see that word "ceased" in verse 10? "He had ceased." You know where that word is used? It's another word-- it's another word for rest. It's only used one other time in this chapter.

Look where it is, verse 4, "he has spoken in a certain place of the seventh day in this way: 'and God rested on the seventh day from all his labors.'" There it is, same word. In other words, if you want to enter in, if you want to cease from your works as God did, what's it saying here in this text? Then keep the seventh day. Don't work on it. Because God didn't work on the seventh day, and neither should you. Do you get the point? Powerful! He rested from all his works.

So now, in summary then of those two verses, as we pull it together. Here's what it really means, Hebrews 4. It says in our lesson, "know what it means." Here's the last statement. "For he, that is the person who has entered into his rest--" that's only someone's who's truly converted, right--? "Ceases," that means rests from his labor, "on the seventh-day Sabbath as God did." Amen? And so this passage is really a picture of how to enter into salvation rest, how to enter into physical rest, how to enter into eternal rest. Are you thankful for the Sabbath day?

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