“Let us labour therefore to enter into that rest, lest any man fall after the same example of unbelief. For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. Neither is there any creature that is not manifest in his sight: but all things are naked and opened unto the eyes of him with whom we have to do.” (Hebrews 4:11–13, KJV)
Several points today. Spot them yet?
- Labour to enter into the rest
- lest any man fall after the same example of unbelief.
- The word of God is sharper than any two-edged sword
- The Bible reveals the thoughts and intents of the heart.
- Nothing is manifest in God’s Sight
- All things are open to God
Six whole points. Believe it or not, six to seven points used to be common in Preaching. I got all of this in three verses. Can you imagine trying to write sermons in the old days, trying to preach exegetically seven point sermons? Wow. It could take you YEARS to get through the Bible. I’d be in my seventies preaching at that rate.
By the way, in case you hadn’t noticed, I’m giving for the preacher boys who are following sermon seeds for exegetically preaching through Hebrews.
How do you labor to enter into the rest? Remember, we talked about what the rest is a simile for… salvation. Salvation happens in an instant, and laasts forever. However, the rest Hebrews refers to is very rarely spoken of in the Bible. When we recieve our glorified bodies, we shall be like Christ – and this is the rest. We rest from our eternal labors. Now, will there be work in the eternity? Unknown. The Bible leaves that as a glorious secret. We have no idea what the eternity will be like. We have not a clue.
By the way, I’ll go on the record and state that most of the people who try to say they’ve gone to heaven and there’s rooms full of arms and legs that nobody asks for, etc… may not be telling the truth. If your story starts out with “I was in a cable car going to heaven…” or “Jesus came to me in my room one night and told me He wanted to show me Hell, and then Heaven…” yeah, uh… Lithium.
Paul was taken to Heaven, and shown many things. He would not say a word. He was even reluctant to bring it up. John was shown the throne room of God, and was allowed to describe some things. He was going to write some things down, but was told, “don’t write that part down.”
So, why do all these people who’ve been to heaven seem to be free to just discuss EVERYTHING???
Back on subject.
To labor to enter into that rest is a nice way of saying, “If you are thinking of leaving Christianity, you are not saved. Get saved, lest you go to hell.”
Which brings us to point 2. Get saved, or go to Hell.
Hell seems to be like the learning disabled member of the Christian family. We try to hide it, seem embarassed by it, and when someone brings up the subject, we hiss “hush!”
People, D. L. Moody’s opinions aside, few people have been truly saved without the prospect of Hell staring them in the face. If we leave it out of our presentation of the Gospel, we end up with the “Saved from what…?” syndrome. And then we wet our tares down nicely in our baptismals. Why go through the trouble? Just mark a letter on their forehead with water. THey’re not saved, so no point in baptizing.
The hint here is in the word “Enter.” We are commanded to enter into that rest. “Get saved.” If we disobey, then the penalty is terrific.
Depend upon it, there is not a superfluous verse in the Bible, nor a chapter which is useless… The Biblical Illustrator Commentary
The word of God is two-edged. No blunt side. Two edged swords tend to be slightly thicker in the middle, to bear the strength somewhere to keep the sword intact. The cutting is not like other single edged swords. You move forward, cutting down ward, then to the next opponent, bringing the sword backwards towards you. If you are not constantly moving forward, you’re really likely to slash yourself severely with your own weapon! Compare the Scottish Claymore and the Chinese Da-Mo. One is heavy, and designed to smash through things. The other is light and fast. Both of them are just as dangerous to the wielder as to the opponent.
(1) With the one edge it corrects and converts.
(2) With the other it condemns and destroys adversaries.
1. Let us greatly reverence the Word of Cod.
2. Let us, whenever we feel ourselves dead, and especially in prayer, get close to the Word, for the Word of God is alive.
3. Whenever we feel weak in our duties, let us go to the Word of God, and the Christ in the Word, for power; and this will be the best of power.
4. If you need as a minister, or a worker, anything that will cut your hearers to the heart, go to this Book for it.
–The Biblical illustrator Commentary
Unfortuantely, most Christians have allowed their sword to get dull and rusty. Swords must be cared for. I remember paying $40 for a book by a swordsman in Medieval Japan once, and the very first thing the swordsman instructed is, “you must first learn to polish your sword.” Same thing here. LEARN your Bible!