“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 will find rest for your souls. ” Matthew 11:28-29 NASB
Life can make us very weary. Work never ends, bills pile up, kids rebel, and we cannot seem to lose that extra ten pounds. It is as though we would like a break, but we are afraid we will only fall further. So we press on.
Jesus has an answer for us. He tells us to come to him.
But what does this mean?
Coming to Jesus means to put down and turn from everything we trust in to bring us comfort, security, hope, and joy that cannot deliver.
And to turn to Jesus because he can bring you everlasting satisfaction.
But turning from and turning to is really, really hard. It seems as though everything in us screams that we have to keep running the rat race. That we have to produce or our existence is meaningless. Why is this?
We find the answer all the way back in the first three chapters of the Book of Genesis. It is the first book of the Christian/Jewish Bible. The first three chapters tell us that there is a Creator who made everything we see, including us. It tells us that we were made to be in a harmonious relationship with one another and with our Creator.
But our original parents, Adam and Eve, chose to reject God. They decided to be their own gods and to go their own way. Thousands of years of human history and our own lives show us that we too choose to live by our own rules and to rebel against our loving Creator.
The Scriptures tell us that our Creator cannot do anything that is wrong. He only does what is right. This is known as being righteous. We also read in Scripture that our Creator must punish all wrong done. This is known as being just. This means that we are all under our Creator’s judgment for the wrongs that we have done and continue to do. Though you and I may try to do good, what we find is that we can never do it with totally pure motives. Wrong motives make right things wrong. What can we do to make things right between us and God?
There is nothing we can do. But God can. And indeed, he promises in the third chapter of Genesis that he will. We see that God not only does what is right, and punishes what is wrong, but that our Creator desires to show us love and mercy. So, he devised a plan.
The plan was to send his Son Jesus Christ to be our substitute. Now a substitute in our day can mean something not as great as the real deal. A second-string player can substitute for the starter or there can be a substitute for sugar. (Never a good thing.) But this is not the case with God’s substitute. Jesus was fully God and fully man. He is the perfect substitute for you and me.
He left his heavenly home to walk among us, to suffer as we do, and to reject all evil. He lived the life we could never live. He was 100% obedient to God the Father. Nowhere is this more evident than the cross. Jesus knew that he was born to die for the sins of many and he completed his mission.
Jesus was hung on a cross. While on a cross, God put the sins of the world onto Jesus. Then, God punished Jesus with the punishment we deserve. Jesus died and he was buried for three days.
After three days, Jesus rose from the dead and was seen alive by over 500 people over a forty day period. Why is this important? Because God tells us that the punishment for sin is death. If Jesus is alive, then he has completely dealt with sin.
Want to find rest in a weary world? Pursue Jesus for comfort, security, hope, and joy. What you will find is that he is “gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.”