There remains, then, a Sabbath-rest for the people of God; for anyone who enters God’s rest also rests from their works, just as God did from his. Let us, therefore, make every effort to enter that rest, so that no one will perish by following their example of disobedience. (Heb 4:9-11)
As we move forward in our study of Hebrews, chapter 4 brings us to an interesting paradox. We have seen that the people did not enter the Promised Land because they had no faith. In other words the writer is noting that there is a difference between belief, and faith: Belief "believes," but faith "acts on that belief." The Israelites were not willing to put action to their belief, which would be to step out and confront the giants in the land. It was simply too hard, and so they failed, and they all died in the wilderness.
Ironically, this is a place that many Christians find themselves today. They believe in Jesus and what He did on the cross, and they believe that we are supposed to have an abundant life in Christ, however they find it simply too hard walk out. They try and try to please God, but come up short, and end up giving in to the desires of their flesh.
Why is it so hard? The writer of Hebrews talks about rest, but some seem to live in a continuing cycle of striving to please God, then failing, then remorse… over and over.
Well friends, there is a solution, there is a rest; it's name is surrender, and we'll talk about it this Sunday in Hebrews chapter 4.