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.
Mans rest with Him was planned from the beginning. The rebels are barred from this rest, but those who believe do enter into God’s rest.
His rest: The Greek word for rest is katavpausiß Katapausis (kat-ap’-ow-sis); means to ceasing from work or from any kind of action, “The calming of the winds”.
The idea of “Rest” has several layers of meaning, The “Promised Land” was the destination for Israel. For the believing Christian the “Promised Land” is a type of “Victorious living” and eventually the “salvation”. For Israel, the “Promised Land” was the fulfillment of obedience resulting from faith. Israel, as a nation, lacked faith in God’s promise and failed to enter in his rest.
The writer is warning the Hebrews of making the same mistake Israel did in the wilderness. Brought to the edge of the “Promised Land”, they failed to enter it. The fear is for first century Hebrews, to make the same mistake Israel made in wilderness. “Any of You” could apply to both the “Saved” and “Unsaved”. The saved reader could miss the “Promise Land”, the Lord’s “Rest” because they are fail to trust in Christ’s “finished work”. And either through “Carnal living” or “Works oriented” salvation wander in a restless wilderness, rather then “Rest” in the “Promise Land”. To the unsaved, “to come short of it” applies to those who heard the Gospel, but lack of faith, and therefore fail to enter the “The Land of Promise”, like those who did not believe who came out of Egypt.
Failure to rest often creates a religious piety or even bargaining with God because of a sense of failure which could lead to even more excessive piety in an effort to gain the approval of the God we think we have failed. However, the most we can do for God….at least for it to have any eternal ramifications, is to rest. I have sent many religiously zealous prayers to God for requests of things or even energy to do the things I think I should do for Him, or that I believe I am called to do for Him. God has the ways and means to accomplish His will and His ends. I am to rest.
There remains therefore a rest for the people of God.
for anyone who enters God’s rest also rests from his own work, just as God did from his. Let us, therefore, make every effort to enter that rest, so that no one will fall by following their example of disobedience.
For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart. And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are open and laid bare to the eyes of Him with whom we have to do.
For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin.
“For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
“I sought the Lord, and He answered me and rescued me from all my fears.” — Psalm 34:4
“Come to me, all of you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take up my yoke and learn from me, because I am lowly and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” — Matthew 11:28-30
“For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” — Romans 8:38-39
“Don’t worry about anything, but in everything, through prayer and petition with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.” — Philippians 4:6-7
“There is no fear in love; instead, perfect love drives out fear, because fear involves punishment. So the one who fears is not complete in love.” — 1 John 4:18
Matthew 6:25-26: Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment?
26 Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are ye not much better than they?