from the blog.

Are You In Agreement with God?

Matthew 11:28 says, “Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls for my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”
He was talking to people under the law who were carrying the burden of thinking that they could never do enough to earn favor with God. He was proclaiming the new way of Grace which was going to be achieved by his death and resurrection. Unfortunately, religion too often has translated this as come to me and I’ll give you a whole bunch of new responsibilities, a higher set of standards you have to reach and religious rituals you’ll have to keep and if you do all that, you’ll find rest after you die. That thinking is not in agreement with the message of grace. Jesus said, come to me and I’ll give you rest. Are we resting? If the burdens we are bearing are not easy and light, then either they are not the ones God wants us to take on or we are trying to carry the whole thing rather than letting God share his part. This leads to discouragement and burnout which often results the development of bad habits and even destructive behaviors.
Hebrews 4: 9-11 says,” There remains therefore a rest for the people of God. for he who has entered His rest has himself also ceased from his works as God did from His. Let us labor therefore to enter into that rest, lest any man fall after the same example of unbelief”. What kind of rest is he talking about and why do we have to labor to enter it? He’s talking about resting in the finished work of Christ. You see, it takes a conscious decision to do that. Our human nature, our pride desires to be in control.  We find our worth in the things that we do or the name we have made for ourselves . But Jesus said in  John 15:5“I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing.  We have to cease from trusting in our own works and rest in what Jesus has freely provided by grace. That is the first thing we have to come to agreement with

In those chapters in Hebrews, he is exhorting the church to not miss entering His rest the way that the Israelites did. We don’t have to uphold the law anymore. We have obtained salvation, our promised land, because Jesus Christ kept the law and we have put our faith in Him. So how can we miss it? It says, in vs 11 “lest any man fall after the same example of unbelief”. We can miss it by unbelief. We see an example of that by looking at the story of the Israelites in Numbers chapter 13.  Look it up when you have a chance. The Israelites had finally come to the entrance of the promised land but didn’t enter it  because they agreed with the report of the other 10 spies instead of the 2 that were agreeing with God. God had already told them that he would give them the land but they made their decision based on what they saw instead of what God said. The promise was available to all of them but Joshua and Caleb were the only ones that obtained it because they chose to agree with God. Were the others God’s people? Of course. Did he still love them? Absolutely. I expect we will meet them all in Heaven one day. They still never saw the promised land though and It’s the same today for many Christians. Our promised land is the kingdom of heaven that Jesus said was within us. Everything in this kingdom has been secured for us by the death and resurrection of Jesus and it is for us to enjoy now. It includes, among other things, peace, joy, health, prosperity, freedom from the bondage of sin and the freedom to rest by casting our cares upon Him. All of these truths can be found in the Bible. Jesus did the work that we couldn’t do because God loved us so much, He didn’t want us to lose out on anything. The promised land is already ours, but we can only enjoy it by coming into agreement with Him.
Have you lost hope through the trials you are facing? Do you think your helpless to kick that bad habit?  Maybe you think it’s too late, you’ve wasted so much time that whatever God had for you is gone now. Whatever your doubts or fears, God has given you the land and He will provide the way through it.. Philippians 2:13- In the AMP says: “For it is [not your strength, but it is] God who is effectively at work in you, both to will and to work [that is, strengthening, energizing, and creating in you the longing and the ability to fulfill your purpose] for His good pleasure”.  Like any good Father, it pleases God when we succeed in this in life. So much so that He has provided everything we need to make it happen. He gives us the strength, the energy, the ability and even the desire to do what He has called us to do. For God so loved the world that He gave. He gave it all to the children that He loves. This love is displayed in thousands of deeds and promises throughout The Bible and we appropriate them by faith. Romans 10:17says, “Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God”. Get a hold of His Word and come into agreement with Him.  “And you shall know the truth and the truth will make you free.” (John 8:32)

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