C.H. Spurgeon: Do not tell me that there is no rest for us till we get to heaven. We who have believed in Jesus enter into rest even now. Why should we not do so? Our salvation is complete. The robe of righteousness in which we are clad is finished. The atonement for our sins is fully made. We are reconciled to God, beloved of the Father, preserved by His grace, and supplied by His providence with all that we need. We carry all our burdens to Him and leave them at His feet. We spend our lives in His service, and we find His ways to be ways of pleasantness, and His paths to be paths of peace. Oh, yes, we have found rest unto our souls! I recollect the first day that I ever rested in Christ, and I did rest that day. And so will all of you who trust in Jesus as I trusted in him.
Yesterday we seen the importance of rest from a point of obedience, but there is also a promise to rest in Scripture. The word Sabbath, simply means rest and original part of the law this has given way to the reality of Christ in the New Covenant (Matthew 26:28). The Sabbath no longer has significance as a day; its significance is in that to which it pointed – in Him who gives rest (Matthew 11:28) and in Whom we have ceased from our works (Hebrews 4:10). For those who rest in Christ, every day is a Sabbath (Romans 14:5).
The Sabbath was Israel’s constant reminder of the truths first declared in the creation. Its purpose was to “jog Israel’s memory” week after week concerning God’s sufficiency and supply, since their memory, even of God’s greatest miracles, was so short-lived (see Ex. 16:2). Thus, arising out of the creation itself (see Gen. 2:1-3), the Sabbath decree was like a piece of string tied around Israel’s finger, never letting her forget that the sovereign Lord was the only one who could be depended upon to meet her needs.
Do you need this reminder? By keeping the Sabbath, God’s people were to proclaim about creation what God Himself said about it when He “rested”: God’s provision is all they need to fulfil His calling in their lives. Like God, His people were not to rest on the Sabbath because they were exhausted or needed a break, but because they were content in God and His will. God’s own pleasure in His provisions, signified by His “rest,” was to be marked by and embodied in His people’s pleasure in what He had provided – likewise signified by their rest.
Jesus proclaimed, “Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28). It was an offer of an abiding Sabbath rest. He was the fulfilment of all the Sabbaths pictured.
We now have a promise of rest in Jesus and there is no other true rest besides Jesus. He alone satisfies the requirements of the Law, and He alone provides the sacrifice that atones for sin. Our rest is in Jesus that He cares for us and will provide for us. Look what Peter sums this up ‘Casting all your care upon him; for he cares for you’ (1 Peter 5:7).