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Through the Cross

The following is a sermon I preached three years ago on Palm Sunday. it came to mind this morning as I was walking and praying. I trust it will bless you this Easter!

In the 5th century BC, the Greeks started some games at Mount Olympus.  An olive branch was twisted as a crown, and onlookers waved palms for the victor.  Palm branches were a symbol of victory. Olympic medals still have palms on them today!

There was excitement in the city.  Jesus was coming.  They had heard of his miracles, of people healed, of demons cast out, of his run-ins with the Pharisees.  The discussion about the coin with Caesars image on it and whether we should pay taxes or not.  The story of the Good Samaritan and the prodigal son.  Lazarus had been raised from the dead just days prior.  And now he was coming to Jerusalem!

He was really coming.  He was the King, the Messiah, in their minds.  They believed he was coming as a victor to bring His kingdom to reality.  They saw victory over the Romans coming to pass so they gave Him a victor’s welcome.  They waved the palm branches and laid them down at His feet in victory.  They even laid their overcoats down in homage to Him.  They praised the one who came riding in on a donkey, just as the prophecies said He would. Of course, the religious leaders were aghast!  They derided Him for accepting the praise of the people.  But He told them the rocks would cry out if the people did not.  They were incredulous, I am sure

Then he walked into the temple and saw the money changers there, cheating the people and lying to them.   They would take a lamb from one family, saying it was not clean enough, and they would sell that same family a lamb that had been taken from another family, supposedly because it was not clean enough.  There weights were not accurate and they cheated the people one after another.  Jesus came in, and as He had done before, he started dumping the tables over, causing a huge commotion in the entry of the temple.  Once again, the religious leaders were furious and said this man has got to go.

The next two days he spent time in Jerusalem, teaching the people with stories about ten virgins and ten talents.  He pronounced woes on the Pharisees in a tone none had seen from Him before.  He told of the end times, and what they would be seeing at the end of the age.  He talked about the value of a widow’s mite, and His feet were anointed with very costly oil by Mary. He told Peter he would betray Him three times.  A lot happened on those two days that we rarely read about.

But then Thursday came.  He sent His disciples into the city to prepare for the Passover, telling them to take someone’s donkey and tell them the Master had need of it.  The disciples went and prepared the feast, and as soon as they were all there, Jesus washed their feet.  The Master washing His followers’ feet – quite a sign of servanthood.  He told them one of them would betray Him, and sent Judas away on His mission.  He told them the bread was His broken body, and the cup was His blood spilled for them.  They were trying to figure out what he was talking about.  I am sure the atmosphere was solemn and sobering.  Not a typical Passover fest, which were usually joyous and celebratory.

Around midnight, they took a walk to the Garden of Gethsemane.  He told them he was going to prepare a place for them, that he was giving them His peace and would send the comforter to teach them.  He told them he was the vine and they were the branches, and they were to be fruitful.  He said the Holy Spirit would convict people of sin, righteousness and judgment.  He told them to pray in His name, and he pronounced a blessing on the disciples, all during that short walk.  Those words can be talked about forever.

When they got to the Garden, He took Peter, James and John a little further in and asked them to pray with Him as he went aside.  But they fell asleep, not once, not twice, but three times.  He told His Father that he was ready to do the Fathers will, and not His own.  He would face the cross.  Judas came and betrayed Him with a kiss and the soldiers took Him away in the middle of the night.  A mock court awaited Him. It didn’t take long for them to convict Him as peter was outside betraying Him.  Pilate listened to the case and washed His hands of the whole thing after the crowd cried crucify Him.  He was beaten, bruised, spit on, scourged, given a crown of thorns and made to carry His cross.  He fell under the weight, weakened by the loss of blood.  A man helped Him carry the cross the rest of the way.  They laid Him on it and put the nails through His hands and feet.  Then they raised the cross and dropped it in the hole with a thud.  The pain in His body must have been immense, the sight of Him almost grotesque. 

Then He asked the Father to forgive them, for they did not know what they were doing.  He put John in His place to care for His mother.  He asked for a drink and got vinegar.  Then he cried it is finished and His life left Him at three in the afternoon.  He gave it up, they did not take it.  All of a sudden there was an earthquake.  The veil of the temple ripped from top to bottom.  People came up out of their graves and walked in the streets of Jerusalem.  It was an incredible series of events.  They took His body down and laid it in a borrowed tomb, wrapped in a cloth.  They out a huge stone at the entry of the tomb, sealed it with a Roman seal and placed a guard at the door so no one would steal the body.

Saturday was quiet.  The people mourned His death.  They seemed hopeless because they had such high hopes.  Now He was gone, and their dreams of a Messiah were gone with them.  The disciples were in hiding, afraid of the Romans, who thought they might steal the body so they could claim he rose again as He said He would.  I can’t imagine the tears that were shed that day.

Then Sunday came.  Mary came to the tomb to anoint the body, but when she got there the Roman guard was asleep and the stone was rolled away!  She went into the tomb and Jesus was gone.  She wondered where he was, and Jesus appeared to her, telling her He had risen just like He said He would.  Se ran to tell the disciples. Peter and John ran to the tomb to see for themselves.  They were amazed, and suddenly Jesus came into the room and talked with them.  The victory had been won.

You see, the cross was necessary.  Jesus had to win the victory by going through the cross.  And we win the victory by going through the cross as well.  We don’t ant to stay on the front side of the cross, and see the agone and defeat that is there.  We need to get to the back side of the cross and see the victory that Christ won for us.

On the front of the cross is agony on the back of the cross is peace

On the front of the cross is sorrow on the back of the cross is joy

On  the front of the cross is weakness on the back of the cross is strength

On the front of the cross is doubt on the back of the cross is faith

On the front of the cross is pain on the back of the cross is healing

On the front of the cross is deceit on the back of the cross is honesty

On the front of the cross are lies on the back of the cross is truth

On the front of the cross is bondage on the back of the cross is freedom

On the front of the cross is darkness on the back of the cross is light

On the back of the cross we are lost on the back of the cross we find the way

On the front of the cross is sin on the back of the cross is forgiveness

On the front of the cross we are stained with sin

on the back of the cross we are white as snow

On the front of the cross is defeat on the back of the cross is victory

On the front of the cross is death on the back of the cross is eternal life

If we stay on the front of the cross, hell will be our destination

When we go through the cross, and come to the back, our destination is heaven

All is only achieved if we go through the cross.  Have you seen Him on the front of the cross, blood stained, nailed, in agony? Have you accepted Him as your sacrifice for your sin? If you have, then come through the Cross for victory.  Come to the back of the cross and realize all God has for you.

The Order of Melchizedek

Hebrews 5:5-6

So also Christ glorified not himself to be made an high priest; but he that said unto him, Thou art my Son, to day have I begotten thee.

As he saith also in another place, Thou art a priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec.

There are some things that I just don’t understand.  Well, to be honest, there are many things I don’t understand.  I am a simple lay person whom God has given the gift to write, both these studies and poetry/songs.  He can craft a sermon using my mouth, but most of it comes from Him, not me.  I learned at one point in my life to listen to His voice and that is where the words come from.  People ask me all the time how I can write such beautiful poetry, and I ay that I don’t.  he speaks it to me and I just put it on paper (Or type it on my computer).  It flows like a brook that flows down a mountain after a rain.  I certainly don’t understand why He chose me to write these words, but He did. By the way, if you are not familiar with my poetry blog, you can find it HERE (psalmistpetegardner.com)

I don’t understand why everyone did not follow Jesus and leave John the Baptist the day Jesus was baptized.  After all, an audible voice came out of the heavens saying “This I my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.” (Matthew 3:17, Mark 1:11).  If I heard that voice from heaven, I would have followed Him right into the wilderness and been there for Him when He needed something.  I doubt I would have left His side for anything.  But He went into the wilderness alone right after that proclamation.  I don’t understand that.

Imagine if you will if that would happen today and you were present.  You see a man come forward to the altar in your church.  You’ve never laid eyes on him and you know he is a visitor here that day. But your Pastor looks at Him and sees something special about him.  Maybe he feels the anointing on the man – that is definitely possible.  Maybe there is some thing in the way he looks at the Pastor that grabs his attention.  Whatever the case, the Pastor believes something special is happening.  All of a sudden. A voice booms out of heaven and says “This is my anointed messenger, in whom I am well pleased.”  What would you do?  Me – I would be skeptical.  In todays’ society, with the high-tech sound systems we have, this could come from a sound system.  But you know the sound system, and this voice definitely did not sound like it came from there.  My tendency would be to listen to the man if my Pastor allows him to speak.  Hopefully, the pastor has enough discernment to now be distracted by the voice.  Hopefully, he will ask the man what he wants to say and weigh it against scripture.  And hopefully, I will weigh my response by that same standard.  If the words spent by any man do not line up with the scripture, it should be rejected.  In these times especially, we must be vigilant and know the word of God well enough to judge sound doctrine.

That is why Paul uses scripture to back up the claim that Christ is our high priest.  This was difficult for the Jews (Hebrews) to comprehend.  After all, Jesus never served in the temple as a priest.  He was not in the Levitical line, but the line of Judah.  He had no right to be a priest according to the literal translation of Old Testament law. Paul has to build His case that Jesus came as our high priest.  Jesus never claimed this position.  Jesus never claimed He would take away sin either.  But the scripture tells us these things about Jesus.  They tell us who He was and why He came.  They tell us the ministry that He represented.   He did not glorify himself.  He let His Father do that.  Even on holy week, he asked the father to glorify His name and God said (again in an audible voice) “I have bopth glorified it and will glorify it again” (John 12:28)

So, to help the people understand how Jesus could be a high priest, he draws back into the Old Testament and a man named Melchizedek.  This goes way back to Abraham’s time, before the law, before the priesthood was even thought of. The story is in Genesis 14:18-20.  Melchizedek was the king of Salem, but it also says he was the priest of the most High God.  The Levitical priesthood was not even established yet, so the priesthood of Melchizedek was directly from God, not from a human perspective.  Abraham, the Father of the nation of Israel, and the father in faith of all who claim to be Christians, paid tithes to this Melchizedek.  And Melchizedek blessed Abraham in return.  Paul equates the priesthood of Jesus to that of Melchizedek, and uses the prophetic words of Psalm 110:4 to make his case.  This verse would be familiar with the Jews, as they had all been taught from their youth that this verse was about the Messiah.  He would be their high priest forever.  But still to this day many do not believe. Paul gives us a great example here of backing up His preaching with the scripture.  We should always make sure what we written, say or do lines up with scripture.  That is the purpose of Gods word – to teach us and train us in God’s ways.  It escapes my why so many can be drawn away from the word be the deceitfulness of a false prophet or false teaching.  It has to be that they do not know the scripture well enough to discern the truth.  Don’t let that be you!  Know the truth of scripture, and the truth shall set you free!

Come Boldly

Hebrews 4:14-16

14 Seeing then that we have a great high priest, that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our profession.

15 For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.

16 Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.

We have a great high priest, and his name is Jesus.  As we continue through Hebrews, the importance of this statement will become more and more evident.  The writer is talking to people who knew the role and position of the high priest. This high [priest is not just any priests.  He is the one who anoints and swears in all the other priests.  He is the one who instructs the priest on how to do the sacrifices correctly.  They did not just kill the animal, but there was a sequence of events that took place that contributed to the transference of sin from the one giving the animal to the animal.  There was a specific way to kill the animal; The high priest had to make sure this was done properly all the way through, an oversee you might say.

The high priest had another duty as well.  It was the high priest who went into the Holy of Holies once a year with a blood sacrifice for the nation of Israel, to atone for all of Israel’s sin. Only the high priest could do this on the day of Atonement.  No one else dared enter the Holy of Holies lest they die.  In this place was the ark of the covenant, which was the most sacred item in all of Israel’s history.  The tablets of stone with the ten commandments, Aaron’s rod and some manna were in that ark, and they remain there this day.  It would be an archeologists dream to find that Ark. Jesus has atoned for our sins in this same way as we will discover.

Jesus also faced the same earthly temptations as we do.  Some of them are written.  In Matthew 4 we read about his temptations in the wilderness.  He was tempted to walk away from the cross when praying in the Garden of Gethsemane.  I have no doubt there were many other temptations that came across His path as he walked this earth.  But He never gave in to any of those temptations.  This goes to prove that there is no sin in being tempted, as even Jesus was tempted.  Those who teach temptation is a sin deny that Jesus was w sinless sacrifice.  The key is that we don’t give in to those temptations that would cause us to sin.  We must walk away, using the word of God to strengthen ourselves against those temptations.  Jesus sued 3 verses out of Deuteronomy and the devil left him!  We should know the promises that God gave us as well.

Verse 16 is one of the most widely mis-used verses in the Bible, in my humble opinion.  It is often quoted by those who believe in a prosperity gospel message.  They say we can come boldly before the throne of God and claim things are ours, as if God is a magic potion or gift giver of all that we desire in this world.  They say we should come boldly and ask for that Cadillac, or that vacation home, or to have riches or fame.  They say we should boldly hold God to His promises to bless us and give us the desires of our heart.  They say we should boldly proclaim that we can ask what we will and it shall be done.  After all, each one of these is a scripture promise that he has given us, right?

But the writer makes a big distinction in this verse about why we should come to the throne with boldness.  It is not to ask blessing on ourselves, or for worldly goods, or for material things.  It is to ask for mercy and grace.  We come boldly before His throne to obtain mercy.  Mercy for sins, trespasses and iniquity in our lives.  Boldly means confidently.  Paul was telling the Jews that they could come to God’s with confidence when they need to obtain mercy in their lives.  And who among us does not need His mercy.  I need it every day.  There are words that I say and things that I do every day that are displeasing to Him.  But as a Christian, I do not have to worry about those things.  I can confess them to God, come boldly asking for mercy, and He will supply that mercy.  That is one reason to come boldly.

The second reason is to find grace in time of need.  We have no business asking God for grace because it is a free gift.  It was given to us at the cross 2,000 years ago.  It is given ti us every day in the sunrise, the rain, the air we breathe.  Grace is always all around us.  His grace is not what we are asking for here.  We are asking Him to give us grace toward those who have needs.  Grace that we can give out, not Him to us.  As a society in the US, we have such a sense of privilege that we think we need things other countries only dream of.  I need a big screen TV!  I need cable.  I need a great car.  I need, I need, I need.  We confuse need for want way too often.  Then we cry out for God to shower grace on us so we can get these wants. Instead, we should be asking Him for grace so we can bless others with these things!  Let this be your prayer: “Lord, give me the grace to deal with that person who offended me”.  “God give me the grace to offer to help that person financially.” “God, let your grace be apparent in my life to that neighbor who is lonely and full of sorrow.”  These are prayers we can come boldly with! Let us always remember whop God is.  He is not some slot machine where we can pull an arm and have Him give us what we want.  He is the omnipotent, omnipresent, omniscient God of the universe.  He has no obligation to grant our prayers on our timetable or in the way we want Him to.  He will always do what is best for us.  When we come boldly before His throne, We should come in all humility, down on our knees in deep reverence.  Remember, He loves the one with the broken and contrite heart, and He hates pride.  Always keep this in mind when approaching His throne.

The Two-edged Sword

Hebrews 4:10-13

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

11 Let us labour therefore to enter into that rest, lest any man fall after the same example of unbelief.

12 For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged 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.

13 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.

When we enter into the rest of the Lord, we will cease from our works just as God ceased on the seventh day.  Obviously, we are not there yet.  As the last post said, we have much work to do.  We cannot just sit back and relax, waiting for that day to come.  Even Jesus as a twelve-year-old boy knew he must be about His Father’s business.  So many times, Paul tells us to continue working, continue ministering, continue the mission God has for us.  Our job is not done until we pass from this earth, whether by death of our flesh or by the rapture.  We have to work ‘til Jesus comes, as the old song says.  Be vigilant in your calling to do all you can to reach the lost, heal the sick, deliver the captive and make disciples of those you come in contact with.  This is the labor we have for God.  These things need to be done, or we may fall because of unbelief.  Don’t let that happen to you!

In doing these things, it is so important that we point people to the word of God.  It is His word that will bring in the lost.  Not Billy Graham’s words, not John Hagee, not David Jeremiah or any of the great orators of the gospel.  It is God’s word that does the work in a man’s heart.  The reason it does it explained in verse 12.  Paul gives 6 ways the word of God works on our lives.  These ways are not just evident when someone gets saved.  These are things the word does even to the most mature Christian if we allow it to.  We have to be soft and pliable, and not have that hardened heart that we discussed a few posts ago.  God is not a task master.  He will not force His will on us, but rather, by gently prodding, He will lead us along His path.  Whether we follow or not is our choice.  Let’s take a closer look at these six ways the Word will work on us.

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First, it is quick. What a fascinating word this is the KJV.  In almost every other translation, the Greek word used here is translated alive.  From the same root word comes the KJV word quicken, which also means to make alive. Quicken is one of my favorite words in the KJV.  I have always taken it to mean that He makes our spirit come to life. This is what the word of God will do.  It gives life!  In so many ways it in our eyes to the truth of what life is supposed to be like.  This world we live in is full of turmoil, strife, sorrow, sadness and bad news.  But His word brings peace, joy, love, hope, healing and Good News to us every time we open the pages and start to read.  This is Life!  Our lives are not supposed to be only lived in the valley, but on the mountaintop as well, and the Bible brings us there.   This word is alive!  We can read the same passage one day after the next, and each day God can speak new life into our spirit each time. It never ceases to amaze me how much God loves us, that he would leave such a precious letter to us, as written by faithful servants through the centuries.  What a wonderful; God we serve, and what a wonderful resource for life we have in His word!

Second, it is powerful.  As we speak the word of God, and pray the promises that He has given us, amazing things happen.  These words can heal the sick, deliver the captive, make the demons flee, drive the craziness out of us.  It is powerful enough to defeat the enemy just by speaking the word.  It is powerful enough to move mountains and part seas.  The power that comes from praying the word of God cannot be matched by anything else.  He stands behind His word and executes the promises contained in it.  He will never fail to keep His word to us, and the power that is within it.  We can trust, that no matter what may come, His word has a solution, if we will just seek it out and then pray it over the problem.  Amazing power comes from such a prayer.

Third, it is sharper than any two-edged sword.  Back in Jesus time, the sword was the primary weapon.  The person wielding it must keep it sharp or it will be useless.  A two-edged sword is sharp on both sides. It can cut coming and going. A sword like this, when sharpened, is a dangerous weapon that one should take seriously.  The word of God is a similar weapon, only it does not cut flesh and blood.  It cuts into the soul and spirit of a man, making Him see himself in light of God.  When we see that, we tremble.  But this sword can also be used as a weapon when we wield it.   Paul explains this when he talks about the armor in Ephesians 6.  He says the word is the sword of the spirit.  It is the only weapon we have against the enemy.  We must know i.t well to use it like this, though.  You don’t want to go into the enemy with a sword that is dull!  Have your sword sharpened by knowing the scriptures.  These are the words that will bring victory in any circumstance.

Fourth, dividing the soul and spirit.  To me, this is the most profound part of the power of the word.  It divides the soul, which represents our fleshly life, and the spirit, which represents our life with God.  The word of God helps us see the struggle our flesh has in letting go of control over our mind.  The word lifts up our spirit, while trying to suppress our flesh. It is the word of God that helps us see ahead to the narrow path we must take to get into the Kingdom of God.  It is the word of God that will turn us from following our flesh to walking in the Spirit.  If we neglect the word, we can be sure that our life will start to slowly sink into fleshly desire and want to get further away from God.  We must be diligent to keep the word fresh in our minds, hearts and souls.  We must allow the Holy Spirit to speak to us while we are reading the word so we know how it should be considered, It will bring a meeting of the minds within us, and determine whether the soul or the spirit will win. I pray that in my life the spirit will always win.

Fifth, dividing the joints and marrow.  Our life is in the marrow.  The marrow is where the blood cells are formed so that they can carry nutrition to the rest of the body.  When the marrow is bad, the whole body suffers.  I know this because of my cancer journey.  Bone marrow biopsies are a standard when checking for leukemia or lymphoma type caners.  These are cancers of the blood, and the marrow is the manufacturing center for our blood.  The joints make our body be able to perform the way it does.  If the joints give way, the body will not function properly.  Arthritis typically forms in the joints, causing pain with movement. My feeling is that the intent of dividing the joints and marrow is to bring our flesh under subjection.  We must do this in order to follow Christ. He has given me free will, and I need to sue that will to ward off the advice of y enemy and listen to the word of God.  He will tell me right from wrong, and it may take a lot to get me to turn away from our flesh and its desire.  But God’s word can do it!

Sixth, the word of God discerns the thoughts and intents of the heart.  This is where we get into trouble. Our thought life can steer us wrong every time.  God’s word can go straight to the heart and help us see what we are really thinking.  It not only knows, but discerns the intent that we have.  This is why we have to be so careful with out thoughts.   It is of the utmost importance that we transform our minds and renew them in the word.   It is important that we think on things that are good, honest, true, just, lovely, or good report, virtuous and praiseworthy.  Don’t every think God does not know what you are thinking and what your intent is.  He does, and His word will bring you to that point where you are face to face with that intent.  I think this is why many people turn away from God.  The enemy takes God’s word and twists it so we feel condemnation instead of the conviction of the Holy Spirit.  Jesus did not come to convict us He came to save us. Never allow the word of God to condemn you! The word of God is our lifeblood.  We must spend time in it because it is the meat that sustains our spiritual life.  It will lead us down the right oath every time.  Get to know His word and you will see His plan!

There Remains a Rest

Hebrews 4:4-9

 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.

And in this place again, If they shall enter into my rest.

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

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.

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

There remaineth therefore a rest to the people of God.

According to the Pharisees, I am breaking the Sabbath by typing this study on the Sabbath day.  That is not the only thing I will do that is against the Sabbath, according to Pharisee rules.  Today I will carry the lectern to the aisle of our church for Sunday School,  turn on the sound system, turn off the lights,  cook,  and drive. I will do many things that would be against the Sabbath according to the laws set forth by the Pharisees.  I found an article that listed 39 different kinds of work that were prohibited. After all, God rested on the Sabbath – shouldn’t we?

This is an area of contention for many. In Exodus 20, the 4th Commandment says:

Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy.

Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work:

10 But the seventh day is the sabbath of the Lord thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates:

11 For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the Lord blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it.

Why is this commandment so disregarded by the church today?  Do we think that the Old Testament laws were made null and void by Jesus’ sacrifice?  That is hardly the truth.  In fact, in His teachings Jesus made the law even harder in most cases.  When asked about adultery, He said if a man looks at a woman with lust in his eyes, he commits adultery.  He said that if we are angry with our brother, we are in danger of judgement, linking it with murder.  He said we should pay our tithes, but said the weightier thing in the law is mercy and faith.  He said if we do not forgive our brother, God will not forgive us!  Jesus made the law harder, not easier.  So, would not He have regarded the Sabbath just as highly?

Then again, Jesus healed a man on the Sabbath.  He also told a man to pick up His bed and walk on the Sabbath.  His disciples went through a field and picked corn on the Sabbath.   They were mad about this as well. and His disciples went through the fields and picked corn on the Sabbath.  They were reproached by the Pharisees for these supposed violations.  After all, wasn’t this work?  The truth is that if Jesus did break the Sabbath in the Father’s eyes, then he did not live the sinless life He had to live to be our sinless sacrifice.  What is eh answer to this dilemma?

Jesus explains this very simply.  He says man was not made for the Sabbath, but the Sabbath was made fort man.  It was made to we would not work, work, work and not take time for God.  We have a natural tendency to be busy with something.  For some, it’s sports.  For other sit’s taking care of their yard.  Others work too much or play too much.  We do all these things and forget to make time for God, and for His house.  The Sabbath was about taking time for God.  We can all take more time for God.  Maybe not a whole day, but an hour here or there never hurt anyone.  My time is in the morning.  When is yours? The other part of this group of verses again talks about entering into the Lord’s rest.  This is a bigger picture than just the Sabbath.  This rest is the eternal rest we will find as we faithfully serve Jesus.  There were many in the early church who thought since Jesus had come, they could rest from the spiritual work.  The time was here for the rest God had talked about., That is not even close to the truth.  In fact, we now have more work than ever to do.  We have a mission now, and Jesus has given us marching orders.  Preach the gospel, heal the sick, deliver the captive, make disciples of all men.  These are things we are supposed to be doing on a regular basis.  And we still have to do our utmost to live holy lives and work on being as perfect and mature as we can be.  The rest we will experience in Jesus is yet to come.  Until then, let’s be vigilant to be obedient so that we can enter into that rest eventually!  And that day may be closer than we think!