Thursday, November 02, 2006

No wasted motion

As I look at the clouds this morning, and think of sunsets and waterfalls I've marveled at before, it seems to me that God is extravagant in his creation; he's made a world full of beauty and majesty. But today's reading from chapter 4 of Hebrews suggests that although God may be extravagant, he doesn't waste anything.
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. Therefore God again set a certain day, calling it Today, when a long time later he spoke through David, as was said before:
Today, if you hear his voice,
do not harden your hearts.
For if Joshua had given them rest, God would not have spoken later about another day.
Hebrews 4.6-8
Notice that last part: God would not have spoken about another day, if Joshua had already given them rest.

The main point of the passage, of course, is that the Sabbath (here a proxy for the Law of Moses) was not the last word in how God relates to Man. If the Sabbath had been sufficient, the author says, God would not have brought up another day, "Today," in which he warns about a different rest than the Sabbath-day rest, and this is a very important point. It's why Paul tells us in Colossians that it's OK to treat all days alike.

But a secondary point is this: God isn't wasteful. He doesn't mention another rest if the first one is enough. He may be extravagant, but he doesn't do anything unless he thinks it's worth something. Yes, I'm extrapolating, but I also think I'm right. :^)

OK, I've arrived at the office so I'd better get to work. The last thing I want to say about the passage is this:

God gave his only begotten son, to save us from the penalty and power of sin. This may have been extravagant, but it was not wasteful. In other words, God considered sinful, broken, corrupt people like us to be worth it.

And all I can say about that is: Wow.

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