Jesus said to them, “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. “For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.” - Matthew 11:28-30
Contrary to the familiar and unfortunate caricature of seminary, my seminary experience was anything but a “cemetery experience.” I was surrounded by great friends whose desire to follow after God with great fervor rivaled my own and I’m grateful to have embarked upon that journey.
One day my professor asked the question, “If you could summarize the Gospel Message in one word, what would it be?” The class took five minutes to jot down our answers. As we reconvened, each of us tossed out our thoughts to the professor and he offered to us all his own selection. He said, “To me, the Gospel Message can be summarized in this word: COME. Do you want healing? Come. Do you seek forgiveness? Come. Do you need comfort? Come. Are you longing for purpose and hope? Come.”
Jesus offers to us everything we need in his very open arms. Do we fully realize that His arms are extended to each one of us? Do you, my friend, realize that His arms are open wide for you? You must know He is the answer to your questions, the fulfillment to your longings, the solution to your problems.
Notice that verses twenty-eight and twenty-nine contain commands followed by a future assurance. The first command is, Come. It’s not a dictatorial command, but a heart-felt, emphatic invitation followed by the promise that when someone comes, he/she will indeed find the rest. This rest is not simply the result of an action, but rather, it is that which is received directly from Jesus Himself. When we come, He Himself will give us the rest we need. Ultimately, we cannot find rest in any other source. The second imperative is the command to Take (His yoke upon us) and the third command is to Learn (from Him). The actions of taking Jesus’ yoke upon us and learning from Him do not happen by accident, but only as the result of deliberate intention. We note here the clear parallelism: what is reaped from pursuing Jesus is “rest for our souls.”
Are you weary? Are you ‘heavy laden’? Do you need rest for your soul? If you do, it’s clear what needs to happen. His arms are open wide.
Question of the Day:
Will I run or will I come?