Entering Into God’s Rest
Primary Truth Taught- It is through Jesus that the Sabbath is realized and God’s rest inaugurated and it is at His return will our rest be consummated.
Last week we traveled with Jesus to the City of Jerusalem where He did a great miracle in the life of a man who had been paralyzed for 38 years. The man had been holding out hope that there was something he could do to heal himself, such as get into the water before anyone else once the water was stirred.
Our Lord walks up to him and asks the man if he would like to be healed? After he answers yes, Jesus simply tells the man to get up, pick up your mat and go.
I mentioned that the Greek word used for get up was the same word used when Jesus performed a resurrection which points to the fact that not only was this man healed physically but he was made alive spiritually as well. He experienced a great resurrection from the dead and walked away to prove it.
You would think the entire city would celebrate the mighty work of God on behalf of this man, however, the exact opposite happened. We should notice how antagonistic people are, who are a part of a works religion when they hear of God’s wonderful grace. We see this in our text for today. Rather than being excited for this poor soul they want to hold him to their works tradition and frown on the fact that he’s carrying his mat on the Sabbath.
There was one part of this healing that turned persecution into a death sentence for Jesus. No longer were the Jews just persecuting Him but now they want to kill Him.
What was it that turned them so against our Lord? It was the fact that He achieved this healing showing great love for this man…on the Sabbath Day.
Because the issue of the Sabbath plays such a large role in Jesus’ ministry that I want to take time today to look at a proper understanding of the Sabbath and then transition to today and the issue of the Christian Sabbath or the Lord’s Day and then finally how we are to conduct our lives in this regard.
Human Need Met
God has placed special days in our schedule to extend even more grace to us. Each week we have the Lord’s Day. Every Sunday the New Testament Church gathers and celebrates the good work Jesus accomplished on the cross and in His resurrection. Now we who believe enter into God’s rest and look forward to its final consummation.
John 5:8–9 (ESV)
8 Jesus said to him, “Get up, take up your bed, and walk.” 9 And at once the man was healed, and he took up his bed and walked.
Now that day was the Sabbath.
That Day Was the Sabbath
This account is the first real example of the Jewish Leaders persecuting Jesus. Throughout the Gospels, there seem to be two big things that keep getting Jesus into trouble with the Jews. He doesn’t abide by their Sabbath Laws and secondly, He keeps saying and doing things that show He is equal to God the Father. In this story, He does both.
The Christian Sabbath Called the Lord’s Day
On this next point I think we should challenge ourselves and if we’re not begin to hold the Christian Sabbath as a day set apart unlike the other six.
What is the spirit of the Sabbath?
Isaiah 58:13–14 (ESV)
13 “If you turn back your foot from the Sabbath,
from doing your pleasure on my holy day,
and call the Sabbath a delight
and the holy day of the Lord honorable;
if you honor it, not going your own ways,
or seeking your own pleasure, or talking idly;
14 then you shall take delight in the Lord,
and I will make you ride on the heights of the earth;
I will feed you with the heritage of Jacob your father,
for the mouth of the Lord has spoken.”
Here we see that the by taking delight in the Sabbath, the Sabbath will help us take delight in the Lord. God has set it in place for our blessing and delight…it’s a day we don’t have to work and a day in which we get to worship God…
So often people have turned it around by looking at all the things they don’t get to do.
Continue reading “Sermon: Entering Into God’s Rest John 5:8-9”