Friday, April 8, 2011

Come — Learn — Rest! (Matthew 11:28-30)

"Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest.  Take My yoke upon you, and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart; and you shall find rest for your souls.  For My yoke is easy, and My load is light.”  Matthew 11:28-30

“Come to Me...”  The word used is the root in other words implying nearness, remaining near—to abideHe is softly, yet urgently calling us to come near Him and remain close.

“all who are weary and heavy-laden...”  The word for weary here is Kopiao and means to grow tired with burdens or grief.  It is to work with wearisome effort.  This is not the same word we see in Galatians 6:9, “And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart.”  This Greek word is Ekkakeo and means to be utterly spiritless, to be wearied out, exhausted.

I must come—remain with Him—before I get to the place of being completely worn out spiritually!  Nearness with Him leads me to the rest I desperately need for refreshing.

“and I will give you rest.”  As we abide with Him we collect His strength and recover from the constant onslaught of heaviness living on earth creates.  A heart at rest is kept quiet, calm and expectantly patient!

I need me some of that! J

As you can see, it’s more of a lifting up than a taking on.  That impacts me! 

I have a tendency to visualize the weight of burden coming down upon my shoulders.  Like a yoke coming down on the backs of a pair of oxen.  Not at all!  Because we are remaining near Christ and being renewed and refreshed—I can lift up that yoke, that burden . . . I can lift up my cross and bear it while maintaining that restful state! 
He lifts me up as I lift my gaze up!

“and learn from Me...”  Learn. From. Jesus!  Christ is the subject matter and the sum and substance of the gospel.  To become related to Him is to know Him and knowing Him is to know His teaching and abide by it.  
Become a disciple of—be discipled byJesus!

“for I am gentle and humble in heart...”  We recently covered humility pretty thoroughly.  To be gentle, like Jesus, is to have a mild disposition—a meek spirit.  The meek are those wholly relying on God rather than their own strength to defend against injustice.  Meekness towards unkind or hurtful people means knowing God is permitting the injuries they inflict, using them to purify.  It’s trusting He will deliver in His time.

Oh, to be like Thee!

“and you shall find rest for your souls.”  From Jeremiah 6:16, “Thus says the Lord, ‘Stand by the ways and see and ask for the ancient paths, where the good way is, and walk in it; and you shall find rest for your souls.’”  Walking the right path with Jesus makes all the difference in whether we walk rested or fearfully on guard and overloaded.

“For My yoke is easy, and My load is light.”  The word for easy is ChrestosJesus is telling us that his burdens will always fit, be useful, and good.  They are pleasant, kind even—never harsh.  Jesus is only, always good and never harsh!  When my “feelings” tell me otherwise, I need to re-examine what load I’ve taken on in place of the manageable load I should have picked up. 
Pretty powerful, very freeing!

“It was for freedom that Christ set us free; 
therefore keep standing firm 
and do not be subject again to a yoke of slavery.” 
Galatians 5:1

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