Throughout the Bible, God gives many examples and promises of His abundance and power. One of these promises is for His people to live restfully and peacefully. In Genesis, God Himself set the precedent of resting. After He had finished His work on the sixth day, He rested on the seventh day (Genesis 2:2). This ability to live restfully with the peace of God ruling in our hearts is an important key to manifesting the more abundant life. God’s Word will show us that ordering our thinking and believing actions according to His Word enables us to live each day restfully and peacefully. Hebrews 4:9 states very clearly what is available.
There remaineth therefore a rest to the people of God.
In God’s Magnified Word, Dr. Victor Paul Wierwille wrote that rest is “the secret to peaceful living.” In this same context of rest, he also wrote:
One great key to successful living revolves around a person’s ability to rest: to relax, to feel composed and assured. Capable athletes, such as boxers, must know how to roll with the punches. A man running in a race must know how to pace himself. People who play football must learn how to unpile slowly so that they get some needed rest before they get back into the huddle. A successful, long-lived business or professional person also has to be able to “live restfully.” He has to learn to have confidence and ease when he is engaged in the enormous responsibilities and activities that are heaped upon him.
These are examples of ways people rest to have great endurance and peace. This is in addition to the rest people get from a good night’s sleep, which is also important. Yet how many Christians know the reality and the depth of the kind of rest that Hebrews 4:9 is talking about? This rest is available to us as we are on the go. We can live restfully—with confidence, assurance, and composure—while believing to achieve our goals. God has provided this secret to peaceful living for His people, and His Word shows us how to claim it. Two important resources that promote rest and peace are God’s Word and His gift of holy spirit in manifestation.
The first resource we will look at for claiming God’s rest and peace in our lives is a knowledge of His Word.
Hebrews 4:2 and 3:
For unto us was the gospel [good news] preached, as well as unto them: but the word preached did not profit them, not being mixed with faith [believing] in them that heard it.
For we which have believed do enter into rest….
First, a knowledge of God’s Word must be acquired. Then we profit as we take believing action on that Word. Since believing is acting on God’s Word, we grow in our ability to claim and maintain rest and peace in our lives by increasing in our understanding of that Word. To more clearly see what rest is, it can be helpful to look also at what it is not. Let’s look at an instance when God’s people did not claim and enjoy God’s rest and the reason why.
Psalms 95:10 and 11:
Forty years long was I grieved with this generation, and said, It is a people that do err in their heart, and they have not known my ways:
Unto whom I sware in my wrath that they should not enter into my rest.
This is referring to the children of Israel who wandered in the wilderness for forty years. They erred in their hearts and did not know God’s ways. Of that generation, only Joshua and Caleb eventually lived in the Promised Land. The others did not enter into God’s rest because they did not believe God’s Word.
But with whom was he grieved forty years? was it not with them that had sinned, whose carcases fell in the wilderness?
And to whom sware he that they should not enter into his rest, but to them that believed not?
So we see that they could not enter in because of unbelief.
The more of the accuracy of God’s Word we know, the more we can apply our believing hearts to receive. Believing the promises of God is the how of receiving the promises of God, and there is rest in that believing.
Now let’s see when some believers did enjoy rest. In the Old Testament we find the record of King Hezekiah’s courageous believing as another nation was threatening to attack the Judeans and take their country from them. Hezekiah’s response to this threat provides great learning.
II Chronicles 32:5-8:
…he strengthened himself, and built up all the wall that was broken, and raised it up to the towers…and made darts and shields in abundance.
And he set captains of war over the people, and gathered them together to him in the street of the gate of the city, and spake comfortably to them [he spake to their heart], saying,
Be strong and courageous, be not afraid nor dismayed for the king of Assyria, nor for all the multitude that is with him: for there be more with us than with him:
With him is an arm of flesh; but with us is the Lord our God to help us, and to fight our battles. And the people rested themselves upon the words of Hezekiah king of Judah.
Hezekiah did take care of the physical needs. He prepared weapons and defenses, but the Judeans’ rest was not found in their military capabilities. The people rested on God’s Word that Hezekiah taught them, and therefore they had rest and peace in the midst of very challenging circumstances. The promises of God’s Word provided the assurance that they needed to believe rightly. Right believing is acting on the Word of God, and right believing yields rest and peace….
This is an excerpt from the May/June 2006 issue of The Way Magazine.
Copyright© 2006 by The Way International. All rights reserved.
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