“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” – Matthew 11:28
We are all given the invitation to rest throughout scripture. We can experience rest fully, not by our own works or practices, but through relationship with Jesus Christ. Pastor and Professor John Koessler elaborates on the meaning of this invitation.
“The striking thing about Jesus’ promise is that when you look at the way He frames it, Jesus is the subject of the verb and we’re the object. Actually you could translate that promise in Matthew 11:28, something like, ‘I will rest you or I will refresh you.’”
Rest is about a relationship with Christ that we can experience on a daily basis.
“First and foremost this rest is a relationship; it’s this relational as it is experiential, so we come to Christ and He refreshes us.”
“There are practices that can help us to experience or can help us to understand this rest that Christ provides us with, but the practices themselves are not the secret. Resting is not rest any more than eating is what makes us full. You could eat things and it really wouldn’t fill you up or it wouldn’t really help you.”
By looking at the origin of rest, we can better understanding God’s desire for our rest.
“I think we have to recognize that rest originates with God.”
“Are we saying that God, after He had accomplished all this creative work, was exhausted and He needed to rest and recover from that? Well that’s clearly not the case. We know from Scripture is that God never grows weary, He never sleeps. The rest of God is the rest of completion.”
Christ already completed the work so that we can rest in Him.
“All of the work of God was finished, everything. That’s really the secret to understanding the rest that comes to us through Christ. All the work that is necessary for our righteousness is already finished – Christ completed it on our behalf.”