Rock Family Church of Morgantown WV
Spiritual Rest 2
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  • We Praise You
  • Spiritual Victory Brings National Rest

    Definition
    8252 שָׁקַט [shaqat /shaw·kat/]
    Quiet, still, settled, tranquil, lie still, be undisturbed, pacify

    Righteousness Brings Rest

    · Repentance brings rest
    · Victory brings rest
    o Israel’s land rested from war after she defeated her attackers / oppressors.
    o America will have rest once the church takes control of our entire land!

    Sin Brings Unrest

    · Like Israel, America has sinned against God – causing UN-rest in our land
    · Removing God, prayer and the Bible from our schools, government and courts
    · As a result, the USA is on the verge of another civil war with each other
    o or revolutionary war with the government

    Sin - turn away from God – toward false gods = idolatry

    · worshiping the very gods the natives were sinning with! - sex gods – ritual prostitution – acting like the world
    The basic cause of Israel’s problems in Canaan was spiritual, not agricultural, economic, educational, or military. Israel had turned from a wholehearted obedience to God.
    · They put God’s law behind their backs (Neh 9:26),
    · “forgot the Lord their God” (1 Sam 12:9), and
    · “followed and worshiped various gods of the people around them” (Judg 2:12; see also 3:7, 12; 4:1; 6:1; 10:6; 13:1).
    Two of the major foreign deities the Israelites worshiped were Baal, a Canaanite storm and fertility god, and Ashtoreth, a fertility goddess[1]

    Suffering by enemies - Servitude – chastening, slavery, taxation

    · The price of Israel’s sin was high, decades of national suffering and oppression. Israel had sinned against God; therefore, God punished Israel with the surrounding foreign nations whose gods the Israelites were serving in order to cause them misery.
    · Weakness - they were no longer able to resist” (Judges 2:14).
    o America is in a place of weakness – the world can see it and is now taking advantage of it
    o The American church is also in a state of weakness – she has compromised the Word and now has little faith to stand on as ungodly legislation is trying to be passed, as our churches are being closed and our voices being silenced. (hare speech)

    Supplication – turn back to God

    · The Israelites’ troubles eventually brought them to their knees before God (Judg 3:9, 15; 4:3; 6:7; 10:10, 15).
    · Admitted their sin
    · Prayed for forgiveness
    · Asked for deliverance - from the hands of our enemies
    · repentance - which involved
    o getting rid of the foreign idols
    o return to their worship of the one true God.

    Salvation

    · In response to the Israelites’ repentant prayers and actions, God brought deliverance.
    · Just as God used people to bring judgment on Israel, so God used people to bring deliverance
    · Judges were hand-picked liberators who were military leaders who
    o performed heroic individual actions (Judg 3:21; 14:19; 15:8; 15; 16:30)
    o mobilized the Israelite tribes against their enemies (Judg 4:14; 7:1–18; 11:6).[2]

    1 – Joshua Takes the Promised Land (Joshua 9-12)

    Summary: started good, made mistakes, but God helped when they asked. Result” Land had rest from war.
    · (9:14–15) Israelites do not consult the Lord
    · tricked into signing a peace treaty with the local enemy (Gibeonites)
    · Increased burden
    o This caused Israel much unneeded trouble because now they have to take care of all of them
    · Increased Vulnerability / Attacks
    o (10:1-14) – Five pagan kings attack Gibeon for signing a peace treaty with Israel
    · Divine Intervention
    o hailstorm (10:13)
    o Sun stood still (10:13)
    Joshua 10:13–14 (NLT)
    13 So the sun stood still and the moon stayed in place until the nation of Israel had defeated its enemies. Is this event not recorded in The Book of Jashar? The sun stayed in the middle of the sky, and it did not set as on a normal day.
    14 There has never been a day like this one before or since, when the Lordanswered such a prayer. Surely the Lordfought for Israel that day!
    o Victory over united attacks from multiple enemies (Joshua 11)
    o Giants Killed – Joshua destroyed the giants in the land (11:21)
    Joshua 11:23 NLT
    23 So Joshua took control of the entire land, just as the Lord had instructed Moses. He gave it to the people of Israel as their special possession, dividing the land among the tribes. So the land finally had rest from war.
    Grace Factor:
    - God gave Israel military victory even though some oppressors were allowed in through Israel’s disobedience!

    2 – Othniel Defeated the Arameans – 8 years oppression – Spirit of the Lord – 40 years peace

    Judges 3:7-11
    Sin: idol worship – Baal and Ashtoreth
    Judges 3:7 NLT
    7 The Israelites did evil in the Lord’s sight. They forgot about the Lord their God, and they served the images of Baal and the Asherah poles.
    Enemy = King Cushan
    Punishment = God turned Israel over to (or allowed) King Cushan to oppress Israel for 8 years
    Repentance = Israel repented
    Who = God raised Othniel – Caleb’s nephew (1:13; Josh 15:18)
    How = The Spirit of the Lord came upon Othniel
    Victory = Othniel expelled King Cushan from the land (voted out?)
    Rest = 40 years
    Judges 3:11 NLT
    11 So there was peace in the land for forty years. Then Othniel son of Kenaz died.
    · Peace = same H8252 as “rest”

    Modern application = The church can expel evil leadership with God’s help

    3 – Ehud Defeated the Moabites - 18-year taxation – 80-year rest

    Ehud the Judge destroyed the Moabites
    Background:
    Israel sinned – did evil in the Lord’s sight
    God gave control over Israel to an enemy nation
    Israel repents
    Ehud kills king Eglon – head overthrows head – pivotal moment – decisive action – small scale by example – leadership is crucial!
    Ehud sounds a trumpet – call to arms – rallies the nation to battle
    Israel overthrows the enemy nation of captors – nation overthrows nation – larger scale victory
    Judges 3:30 NLT
    30 So Moab was conquered by Israel that day, and there was peace in the land for eighty years.
    · Peace = same H8252 as “rest”

    4 – Deborah defeats the Canaanites – 20 years oppression, 40 years rest

    · Sin again
    · Ruthless oppression
    · Enemy = Canaanites
    · Hero: Deborah – a female prophetess who becomes a judge
    · Leader appointed: Barak appointed by Deborah
    · Israel led to victory –
    · How: destroyed the army commander
    · Divine intervention: enemy army confused, panic
    Judges 5:31 NLT
    31 Lord, may all your enemies die like Sisera! But may those who love you rise like the sun in all its power!” Then there was peace in the land for forty years.
    · Peace = same H8252 as “rest”

    5 – Gideon Defeated the Midianites – 7 years oppression – 40 years rest

    · Enemy: Midianites
    · Oppression: cruelty, starvation – outnumbered – destroyed crops, stole livestock
    · Effect on nation: fear, hiding
    · Israel repents
    · Gideon called to deliver God’s people
    · Enemy alliance – vastly outnumbered
    · Divine Intervention: bravery
    Judges 6:34 NLT
    34 Then the Spirit of the Lord clothed Gideon with power. He blew a ram’s horn as a call to arms, and the men of the clan of Abiezer came to him.
    Psychological warfare –
    · tricked the enemy into thinking Israel’s’ army was large when it was small. – novel battle tactic with torches, pots and trumpets
    · Gideon Won with 300 men
    Judges 8:28 NLT
    28 That is the story of how the people of Israel defeated Midian, which never recovered. Throughout the rest of Gideon’s lifetime—about forty years—there was peace in the land.
    · Peace = same H8252 as “rest”

    6 – Israel defeated the Arabs (Persians)

    · Israel refused to bow to the government
    Hero: Esther
    Tactic:
    · expose enemy plot to destroy the Jews
    · laws written in Israel’s favor
    · defend themselves against attackers
    Esther 9:22 NLT
    22 He told them to celebrate these days with feasting and gladness and by giving gifts of food to each other and presents to the poor. This would commemorate a time when the Jews gained relief from their enemies, when their sorrow was turned into gladness and their mourning into joy.
    “Gained relief” = rest
    5117 נוּחַ, נוּחַ, נָחָה [nuwach /noo·akh/] [3] = rest

    Rest for Israel Today:

    · Won the 1948 war for national independence
    · Won the 1967 war to recapture Jerusalem
    · Jews returning to the Promised Land for the last time before Messiah returns!
    · Israel is the only truly democratic nation in the Middle East.

    Rest for the Middle East

    Abraham Accords
    · In 2020 Israel, the UAE, and other Arab countries established diplomatic ties, known as the Abraham Accords.
    · HISTORIC PEACE (rest) in not only Israel, but the Middle East
    · Signed 9/11/2020
    · Experts said it could never be done
    o Much of the world never saw coming
    · Opening of embassies
    Despite growing chaos in the Middle East, the Abraham Accords are moving forward.
    Share opportunities, technology, commerce, travel and security against a common enemy (Iran)
    Creating prosperity and stability
    Bahrain –
    UAE –
    · holding firm 1 year Despite Iran Threats
    · When Israel and the UAE normalized relations, it became the first peace agreement between the Jewish state and an Arab state in 26 years.
    Sudan – seizes weapons from Hamas
    Morocco
    Egypt - direct flights
    · PROPHETIC rest in the Holy Land –
    o (Isaiah 19:23-24) – highway from Egypt to Assyria (Iraq) and Israel

    Rest for America?

    Like Israel, America will once again have rest if she too repents and turns back to God for the forgiveness of her many sins of pride, idolatry and sexuality
    · Genesis 12 – Peace blessings on USA?
    · 1st nation to recognize Israel as a sovereign state
    · 1st nation to recognize Jerusalem as the eternal capital of Israel by moving her embassy there
    · Brokered the Abraham accords
    · Funding of the “Iron Dome”
  • 4 – SPIRITUAL Rest – through Partnership

    Premise:

    God’s rest comes from cooperation with God’s Word

    God’s job – SPEAK the Word
    Your job – BELIEVE His Word – to the point of ACTION
    Hebrews 3:6 NLT
    6 But Christ, as the Son, is in charge of God’s entire house. And we are God’s house, if we keep our courage and remain confident in our hope in Christ.
    Background:

    Israel failed to enter the Promised Land due to unbelief.

    Israel rebelled against God while He was trying to lead them to the Promised Land.

    God’s People Blocked God’s Rest – Heb 3:7-11

    · Tried God’s Patience
    o God’s patience was tested despite miracles
    o Many people say they would believe in God if they saw a miracle, but the entire nation of Israel saw God’s miracles for 40 years, yet refused to believe Him.
    · Turned hearts away
    · Refused to obey
    · Made God Angry (40 years)
    Trusting vs turning:
    Hebrews 3:12–14 NLT
    12 Be careful then, dear brothers and sisters. Make sure that your own hearts are not evil and unbelieving, turning you away from the living God. 13 You must warn each other every day, while it is still “today,” so that none of you will be deceived by sin and hardened against God. 14 For if we are faithful to the end, trusting God just as firmly as when we first believed, we will share in all that belongs to Christ.
    · “Rest” belongs to Christ
    Hebrews 3:19 (NLT)
    19 So we see that because of their unbeliefthey were not able to enter his rest.
    Rest = 2663 κατάπαυσις [katapausis /kat·ap·ow·sis/] [1]
    · A calming of the winds

    1 – God’s Rest REMAINS

    Hebrews 4:1 NLT
    1 God’s promise of entering his rest still stands, so we ought to tremble with fear that some of you might fail to experience it.
    “Still stands” – YAYYYY
    · God is slow to anger, quick to forgive, and FAITHFUL to 1,000 generations.
    · Yet…. How many believers are not experiencing God’s rest?
    · They are saved, but restless
    · Don’t miss out on anything that Christ died to give you
    “Tremble with fear” = reverential obedience
    · Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling
    · Implies people may not be as close to God as they think they are
    · Ask – yourself – “are you in the faith?” If so, By how much?
    · Faith always has corresponding action
    “Might fail to experience it”
    · G5302 – fail to become a partaker – come short – come behind – lacking
    · Lose a race
    Hebrews 4:2 NLT
    2 For this good news—that God has prepared this rest—has been announced to us just as it was to them. But it did them no good because they didn’t share the faith of those who listened to God.

    Word + Faith = Rest

    · “Share the faith” – Word mixed with faith
    · Good News does no good without faith
    · Good soil – heard and DID

    2 – God’s Rest can be REFUSED

    Hebrews 4:6 NLT
    6 So God’s rest is there for people to enter, but those who first heard this good news failed to enter because they disobeyed God.
    How did God’s people FAIL to rest?
    · They HEARD God’s promise
    · They KNEW the Promised land was there – the spies saw it – they saw and ate the massive grapes
    · They FEARED the giants
    · They disobeyed God by refusing to believe God - accepted the evil report – bad news –

    God’s people REFUSED to believe they could HAVE God’s promise

    Examples different types of “rest”
    · Healing “rest”– Healing is not “entered” because of unbelief that a person can obtain it
    · Financial rest – God’s money is blocked by unbelief of the needy

    Life Lesson: Unbelief disqualifies promise – (blessing)

    · Chronic unbelief angers God – (even though He loves us) [action vs person]
    · God apparently takes unbelief personally –
    · unbelief is an insult to both His ABILITY and His INTEGRITY

    3 – God’s Rest is RESERVED for believers

    – Rescheduled
    Hebrews 4:7 NLT
    7 So God set another time for entering his rest, and that time is today. God announced this through David much later in the words already quoted: “Today when you hear his voice, don’t harden your hearts.”
    · God’s rest is AVAILABLE for all believers
    · Set another time = TODAY
    “Hear His voice”
    · Why? Because faith COMES by hearing – Romans 10:17
    · Faith to believe what God said will actually come to pass in their life
    · He who hath an ear
    “Don’t Harden your Heart”
    · Hardening comes from rebellion – 3:7
    Examples that can lead to rest, if obeyed:
    · God CALLS you –
    o Start a business, leave a job, go on missions, join a church and submit your ministry to the pastor
    · God challenges you –
    o Give a gift (like a large offering) – perhaps to someone you don’t like
    o Forgive a repeat offender – again
    · God corrects you
    o Addresses a secret sin in your life
    o Grow up and stop making excuses

    4 – God’s Rest must be RECEIVED

    · God’s rest is desired FOR all believers (by God)
    · God’s rest must be desired BY all believers – to the point of faith
    · WE should want God’s rest for us as much as HE does!
    Hebrews 4:8 NLT
    8 Now if Joshua had succeeded in giving them this rest, God would not have spoken about another day of rest still to come.
    Hebrews 4:9 NLT
    9 So there is a special rest still waiting for the people of God.
    · Don’t let Christ’s sacrifice for you to be in vain in any area – including rest.
    Hebrews 4:10 NLT
    10 For all who have entered into God’s rest have rested from their labors, just as God did after creating the world.
    · Rest from being a fixer – a hero – everything to everybody –
    · Rest from struggling with religious works – the works that please God is to believe.
    · Rest from being a worrier - worry does not prove that you care to people, it proves you are not in faith
    Hebrews 4:11 NLT
    11 So let us do our best to enter that rest. But if we disobey God, as the people of Israel did, we will fall.
    · Do our best – Continual effort – keep the spirit man built up and keep the flesh man down
    · We know we are in God’s rest when we experience God’s peace
    · We don’t have to wait to receive spiritual rest – we can have it now!
    [1]Strong, J. (1995). Enhanced Strong’s Lexicon. Woodside Bible Fellowship.
      • Hebrews 3:7–11NLT

      • Hebrews 3:14NLT

      • Hebrews 4:1NLT

      • Hebrews 4:2NLT

      • Hebrews 4:6NLT

      • Hebrews 4:7NLT

      • Hebrews 4:8NLT

      • Hebrews 4:9NLT

      • Hebrews 4:10NLT

      • Hebrews 4:11NLT

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