Hebrews 3:16-4-13 September 24 2005
This lesson teaches us the high price of
disobedience. The real tragedy, however, is the
missed blessing and missed opportunities. Make
a vow right now to be obedient, as much as is
humanly possible, to God’s direction in your life.
God has promised to bless you for it!
1. Obedience Or Rebellion (Heb. 3:16-19)
Hebr. 3:16 Who were they who heard and rebelled? Were
they not all those Moses led out of Egypt? 3:17 And with
whom was he angry for forty years? Was it not with those
who sinned, whose bodies fell in the desert? 3:18 And to
whom did God swear that they would never enter his rest
if not to those who disobeyed ? 3:19 So we see that they
were not able to enter, because of their unbelief.
God was “provoked for forty years.” The result of this
sin was that the bodies of these rebellious people fell
in the desert. Here the problem is clearly nailed down
because it was those that sinned who died. The root
cause of the rebellion and provocation was sin in the
We must understand that failing to enter God’s rest is
directly related to disobedience on our part. Conversely,
we must be very careful to obey God’s Word and will if
we expect to receive His blessings.
2. Obedience and Urgency (Heb. 4:1-7)
Hebr. 4:1 Therefore, since the promise of entering his rest
still stands, let us be careful that none of you be found to
have fallen short of it. 4:2 For we also have had the gospel
preached to us, just as they did; but the message they heard
was of no value to them, because those who heard did not
combine it with faith. 4:3 Now we who have believed enter
that rest, just as God has said, â€œSo I declared on oath in
my anger, They shall never enter my rest.â€™ â€ And yet his work
has been finished since the creation of the world. 4:4 For
somewhere he has spoken about the seventh day in these
words: â€œAnd on the seventh day God rested from all his work.â€
4:5 And again in the passage above he says, â€œThey shall
never enter my rest.â€ 4:6 It still remains that some will
enter that rest, and those who formerly had the gospel
preached to them did not go in, because of their disobedience.
4:7 Therefore God again set a certain day, calling it Today,
when a long time later he spoke through David, as was said
before: â€œToday, if you hear his voice, do not harden your
We dare not harden our hearts and miss the opportunity
to experience this rest. the honest realization that fear
of failure and / or deliberate disobedience is a
possibility for us as well as the ancient Hebrew people
should point us toward an obedient lifestyle. Recognizing
that the blessing of rest can be ours today is an incentive
for us to claim this promise as we obey God’s leadership.
3. Obedience and Diligence (Heb. 4:9-13)
Hebr. 4:9 There remains, then, a Sabbath-rest for the
people of God; 4:10 for anyone who enters Godâ€™s rest also
rests from his own work, just as God did from his. 4:11
Let us, therefore, make every effort to enter that rest, so
that no one will fall by following their example of
disobedience. 4:12 For the word of God is living and active.
Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to
dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the
thoughts and attitudes of the heart. 4:13 Nothing in all
creation is hidden from Godâ€™s sight. Everything is uncovered
and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give
Let us them make every effort is a renewed exhortation.
Why so many? The author knew (he included himself in
term us) that we are inclined to lapse into disobedience.
Why? Doing so requires little effort. We must work at
obedience; it demands persistent effort. We dare not be
guilty of the same pattern of disobedience the early
The statement no creature is hidden from Him tells us
that hiding from God is futile. No one can hide his face
from the eyes of God. We will face God in our time of
We can too easily speak of others who are not
obedient to God and ignore our own wrongdoings. Jesus
cautioned us about this when He asked :”why do you look
at the speck in your brother’s eye but don’t notice the
log in your own eye?”(Matt. 7:3. How many of us are
obeying the revelation God has given us?