Sunday, October 2, 2011

Hebrews 4:2-10 KJV


If Ye Will Hear His Voice Today

REVISED:

WHAT IT SAYS:

2  For unto us was the gospel preached, as well as unto them: but the word preached did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in them that heard it.
3  For we which have believed do enter into rest, as he said, As I have sworn in my wrath, if they shall enter into my rest: although the works were finished from the foundation of the world.
4  For he spake in a certain place of the seventh day on this wise, And God did rest the seventh day from all his works.
5  And in this place again, If they shall enter into my rest.
6  Seeing therefore it remaineth that some must enter therein, and they to whom it was first preached entered not in because of unbelief:
7  Again, he limiteth a certain day, saying in David, To day, after so long a time; as it is said, To day if ye will hear his voice, harden not your hearts.
8  For if Jesus had given them rest, then would he not afterward have spoken of another day.
9  There remaineth therefore a rest to the people of God.
10  For he that is entered into his rest, he also hath ceased from his own works, as God did from his.

WHAT IT MEANS: 

2  For unto us was the gospel preached, as well as unto them: 

The gospel is the good news and glad tidings of salvation in Jesus Christ, the Messiah. The children of Israel knew that the Messiah was coming and that He was their salvation. Salvation was preached unto us, and also unto them.

Just exactly what is salvation? If you look up the word in Merriam Webster's online dictionary it says: a : preservation from destruction or failure b : deliverance from danger or difficulty -- and it comes from the Late Latin word: salvation-, salvatio, from salvare meaning: "to save."

The thing that Jesus saved us from is death. Not physical death but spiritual death. He payed the price for our sins because we were not able to. Only a spotless sacrifice could atone for all of us. Jesus lived the sinless life that made it possible for His death to rescue all of us from death.

John 5:29  And shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation.

That we live depends on the finished work of Jesus Christ. Where we live depends on whether we believe in Jesus Christ and follow His teachings. Or not. If we believe in Him and produce good fruit because of it, we shall live in Heaven with Him. Our focus will be on Him.  If we reject Him, we choose to live without Him... in Hell. Our focus will forever be on the pain we feel. Our acceptance or rejection of His sacrifice affects our personal everlasting life.

Notice the following three words from Strong's concordance of Biblical words:

This first word, below, is the word that has been translated "salvation" in the English KJV. This Hebrew word would be pronounced by an English speaker as "yesh-oo'-aw."

Notice the definitions and that this Hebrew word was translated into six other English words also -- depending on usage -- but the vast majority of the time (65) it was translated "salvation." Each synonym has a similar meaning and denotes some benefit to the receiver.

03444 העושׁי y@shuw‘ah yesh-oo’- aw

AV-salvation 65, help 4, deliverance 3, health 3, save 1, saving 1, welfare 1; 78

1) salvation, deliverance
1a) welfare, prosperity
1b) deliverance
1c) salvation (by God)
1d) victory

The second word, below, is the name translated into English as "Joshua" in the OT.  This Hebrew word would be pronounced by an English speaker as "yeh-ho-shoo’- ah ".  Say them out loud.  Do you hear how similar they are when they are spoken? That is because the name Joshua means "Jehovah is salvation" -- or God saves us.

03091 עושׁוהי Y@howshuwa‘ yeh-ho-shoo’- ah or עשׁוהי Y@howshu‘a yeh-ho-shoo’- ah

from 03068 and 03467, Greek 2424 Iησους and 919 βαριησους;

AV-Joshua 218; 218

Joshua or Jehoshua means "Jehovah is salvation"

The third word, following, is the Greek variation of the Hebrew word which an English speaker would pronounce  "ee-ay-sooce" (found in the New Testament) and describes the root of the name "Jesus" which also means "Jehovah is salvation" -- or God saves us.

2424 Iησους Iesous ee-ay-sooce

of Hebrew origin 03091 עושׁי; TDNT-3:284,360; n pr m

AV-Jesus 972, Jesus (Joshua) 2, Jesus (Justus) 1; 975

Jesus means "Jehovah is salvation"  1) Jesus, the Son of God, the Saviour of mankind, God incarnate


The English word "Jesus" is a translation of the Greek word "Iesous" which is a translation of the Hebrew word "Joshua" and they all mean that God is our Savior. The coming of Jesus Christ, the Messiah, was predicted by Old Testament prophets and the Jews were expecting to be saved by Him:

Isa 9:6  For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.

They knew that a child was going to be born. They knew the child would be a son born amongst their own people. They knew he would govern them as a leader or king does. They knew he would be called Wonderful because of the wonders or miracles that would accompany him. They knew he would be the Counselor sent from God to tell people about God and how to draw near to Him.

They knew he would be called The mighty God, and The everlasting Father. They knew the Prince of Peace was going to be God, Himself, come to Earth. They had heard the message from God that He was coming to save them. They knew his name would be Immanuel, meaning "God with us."

Isa 7:14  Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.

Isa 8:8  And he shall pass through Judah; he shall overflow and go over, he shall reach even to the neck; and the stretching out of his wings shall fill the breadth of thy land, O Immanuel.

Look at the definition of the name or title: Immanuel:

06005 לאונמע ‘Immanuw’el im-maw-noo-ale’

AV-Immanuel + 0410 2; 2

Immanuel =" God with us" or "with us is God"

The title "Immanuel" has the same result as the names "Joshua" and "Jesus."   If God is "with us" then He is our Savior.  The word "salvation, the names "Joshua", "Jesus" and the title of "Immanuel" all mean that salvation comes from God, and that God is with us to save us, and He himself, was going to be the Messiah -- Savior. God incarnate.

Isa 43:3  For I am the LORD thy God, the Holy One of Israel, thy Saviour: ...

They knew the Messiah would be born of a virgin and would be called Immanuel and that he would be their Savior. They knew that he would be of the tribe of Judah but that he would not limit himself to one tribe. He would overflow and reach "even to the neck," the highest point, of the government and of all peoples. They were expecting him to spread out his wings over the whole land, and the use of the words "O Immanuel" is obviously a prayer of praise addressed to God.


but the word preached did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in them that heard it.

When the gospel or the good news of coming salvation was preached to them they did not believe it. They feared men -- rather than fearing God. In the desert they did not take it into their hearts that God is their Savior and put their faith in Him. They simply refused to obey Him and they would not go into the land he had promised them. They complained that they wanted to go back to Egypt where life was easy and familiar and where they did not have to follow God. They actually went so far as to begin to attack Moses with stones, but God put a stop to that. (See Numbers 14:8-11)

They forgot that God is their Savior. They would not obey Him. So, except for their young children, plus Joshua, and Caleb, God never allowed the old and disobedient into the Promised Land because of their unbelief. Their carcasses fell in the wilderness.

Does it need to be said again that faith in God is paramount? God is Supreme and faith in the deliverance of The Supreme God is the thing that lets us into God's rest. Have you ever thought about resting in God? It seems so relaxing to me, to let go of trying to run my life, and simply let God have His way. He is good. He loves us. He always wants the best for us. He can be trusted to bring to us what we need in order to grow in knowledge of Him. He can be trusted to bring us to Himself, if we will but believe Him.

3  For we which have believed do enter into rest, as he said

Jesus Christ, the Messiah, has come and ascended up to heaven after his resurrection, and we who believe in the Son of God -- and God His Father -- do enter into "God's rest." The writer of the book of Hebrews then gives an example of God angrily mentioning his rest in the scripture.

as he said, As I have sworn in my wrath, if they shall enter into my rest: although the works were finished from the foundation of the world.

The works being finished from the foundation of the world is a reference to Genesis where God rested after doing the work of Creation. The author of Hebrews then adds a few more references as a way of verifying that there really and truly is a "rest" available to believers. He wants it to be perfectly clear that there is such a thing as "God's Rest" and that it is something that we can enter into by putting the following two ideas together:

4  For he spake in a certain place of the seventh day on this wise, And God did rest the seventh day from all his works.
5  And in this place again, If they shall enter into my rest.

Think about what is being said here. The idea that God rested after the creation of the world, and the idea that we can enter into that rest have been brought together and stated as one inter-related concept. God rested after he created the universe and the earth. We are part of that creation. If we enter into His rest, we are "entering into His creation" -- which is finished. Are you getting an inkling of what that means? We are no longer fighting with God, but we are accepting Him. Finally we can look around and see life in a new light of freedom.

Creation is finished or "accomplished." Salvation, too is already finished or "accomplished" in Jesus Christ. All we need to do is believe in God and His rest. We do not have to work hard to be saved, we only need to accept that it is already available. It is there for the taking. It is more like a "relaxing" because we are already saved. It is a done deal. Faith in the finished work of Christ, allows us to rest from our works of trying to improve ourselves, or to reach the top, or change who we are, or whatever it is that incessantly drives us and pressures us. Once we really surrender the "self" of ourselves to His Sovereignty that means that everything about us is in the Very Good Hands of God, Himself. There is nothing more for us to do on that front. How did God put it?

Micah 6:8  He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the LORD require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?

"Do justly" -- do the thing that you know is right -- what God has told us is right.  "Love mercy" -- Love the mercy that God has given us. Love to be merciful to others.  "Walk humbly with thy God?" -- In humility letting God be Master and Friend and walking under His protection and peace. Oh it is bubbling up in me! How Awesome is our God?!! Do justly. Be obedient. Love mercy. Love forgiving. Walk humbly with thy God. Relaxing our grip and letting God be as BIG as HE IS!! He will lead us, guide us, speak to us, provide for us, and bring to us the good will of His heart. He knows our hearts and always provides precisely what we need -- if we will only trust Him. That new circumstance is a new opportunity. It really is OK to let go of our old circumstances and live in the new ones God gives us every day.

Clearly there is a rest that is still waiting to be taken advantage of. God did not remove "the rest" -- he kept the people who did not believe in it, away from it. It's not like He did this arbitrarily, either. God is not arbitrary, He is Sovereign. He made them a promise based on them trusting Him. Since they did not trust Him, he gave them what they did trust in: themselves. Oh what a sad and shallow ending that was.

6  Seeing therefore it remaineth that some must enter therein, and they to whom it was first preached entered not in because of unbelief:

Clearly the ones who first heard salvation preached, did not believe it, which leaves "the rest" still available to those who are willing to believe that God is their Savior.

7  Again, he limiteth a certain day, saying in David, To day, after so long a time; as it is said, To day if ye will hear his voice, harden not your hearts.

God has been calling us from the beginning of time!! Oh how patient He is. Soften your heart and hear Him calling you now. In this verse He is pointing out that the time to believe is now. David is the prophet who told us we have today, but are not promised tomorrow. The opportunity to trust in God is for today. If we trust in God today, we don't need to worry about tomorrow -- because when tomorrow comes, we will be well practiced in trusting in God today. Each day we eat breakfast. Each day we put our trust in God. Today is the day we are breathing. Today is the day we are believing.

God's rest is still available today. Don't harden your heart, listen to what God is telling you today!

8  For if Jesus had given them rest, then would he not afterward have spoken of another day.

Obviously Jesus did not speak of another day, or any thing about there being some other day, in which to believe and to rest. He told us today is the day that repentance should be done. God and His kingdom are here now. Today is the day of salvation!!

Mt 4:17  From that time Jesus began to preach, and to say, Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.

2Co 6:2  (For he saith, I have heard thee in a time accepted, and in the day of salvation have I succoured thee: behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.)

1Th 5:8  But let us, who are of the day, be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love; and for an helmet, the hope of salvation.


Faith. Love. Salvation. Put them on like a new garment. Today.

9  There remaineth therefore a rest to the people of God.

O happy day!! The people of God do have a rest available to them. And look at what that means:

10  For he that is entered into his rest, he also hath ceased from his own works, as God did from his.

Praise the Lord, he is talking about GRACE and SALVATION!! We no longer have to work to be saved. We only need to believe in Jesus Christ and we are saved!!  Right now!! We can rest in that fact!! We can rest in Him!!!

John 6:28-29  Then said they unto him, What shall we do, that we might work the works of God? Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent.

We truly are not saved by our own works. God, our Saviour, has given us a free gift. It is goodwill from God. It is grace! It is His Rest!! It is the gospel of Salvation.

Eph 2: 8-10  For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.


Do justly. Love mercy. Walk humbly with your God. Put on faith. Put on love. Wear salvation like a garment and REST in Him -- Jesus Christ. Abide in Christ and He will abide in you!!

John 15:3  "You are already clean because of the word which I have spoken to you.
4  "Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in Me.
5  "I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing.
6  "If anyone does not abide in Me, he is cast out as a branch and is withered; and they gather them and throw them into the fire, and they are burned.
7  "If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you will ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you.
8  "By this My Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit; so you will be My disciples.


READ THE PASSAGE FROM HEBREWS AGAIN AND SEE IF YOUR UNDERSTANDING HAS DEEPENED:

2  For unto us was the gospel preached, as well as unto them: but the word preached did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in them that heard it.
3  For we which have believed do enter into rest, as he said, As I have sworn in my wrath, if they shall enter into my rest: although the works were finished from the foundation of the world.
4  For he spake in a certain place of the seventh day on this wise, And God did rest the seventh day from all his works.
5  And in this place again, If they shall enter into my rest.
6  Seeing therefore it remaineth that some must enter therein, and they to whom it was first preached entered not in because of unbelief:
7  Again, he limiteth a certain day, saying in David, To day, after so long a time; as it is said, To day if ye will hear his voice, harden not your hearts.
8  For if Jesus had given them rest, then would he not afterward have spoken of another day.
9  There remaineth therefore a rest to the people of God.
10  For he that is entered into his rest, he also hath ceased from his own works, as God did from his.


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