Page 4 - July 2024 - Truth & Tidings
P. 4

God’s Purpose in Israel’s               Incidentally, it is instructive to note
        Redemption                            that despite the nation’s failure to believe,
                                              God’s wrath and judgement upon them,
          There can be no mistaking God’s     and their death in the wilderness without
        intention  for  Israel’s  deliverance:  to   ever seeing the promised land, God
        “deliver them  out of the hand of the   never permitted them to return to Egypt.
        Egyptians” and to bring them “up out of   Nothing could be more clear from the
        the affliction of Egypt” (Exo 3:8,17).   But   type as to the sufficiency of the blood in
                                      1
        as far as God’s ultimate purpose for Israel’s   redemption and the security of a believer’s
        redemption was concerned, deliverance   salvation, now and for eternity.
        from bondage was not an end in itself. His
        purpose also included His will to bring   The Promise of Spiritual Rest
        them “unto the land,” “unto a land flowing   To  rightly understand  the  warning,
        with milk and honey,” which He swore to   it is helpful to appreciate the Spirit’s
        give to “Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob”   application of rest. Canaan’s rest is
        (3:8; 6:8). Effectively, this was the gospel   figurative of the inheritance we have been
        preached to them (Heb 4:2,6).         called to enjoy upon obtaining “so great
          As sons of Abraham, the land was    salvation.” There are two aspects. First,
        already theirs (Gen 13:15; 17:8); every   it is the present spiritual realm named
        Israelite had a right to enter. All they had   in Ephesians as “heavenly places” (lit.
        to do was possess it by faith and obedience   “heavenlies,” Eph 1:3,20; 2:6; 3:10; 6:12)
        to His Word. God’s intention was that they   that we are to possess by faith “today.”
        would trust Him and thereby enter into   Possession involves spiritual exercise in
        the privileges of the inheritance – which   conflict  and  conquest,  cultivation  and
        the Spirit calls “my rest” (Psa 95:11; Heb   growth, self-discipline and endurance.
        3:11;  4:3,5)  or  “his  rest”  (3:18).  But  as   The rest enjoyed is marked by spiritual
        we have noted, “they could not enter in   victory, prosperity, and peace of mind,
        because of unbelief” (v19). Consequently,   soul and spirit. Its realisation is secured
        they forfeited the privileges associated   by the diligent exercise of faith in and
        with entering Canaan, despite being   obedience to God’s Word in the power
        redeemed by blood and set apart to God.   of the Holy Spirit. Second, Canaan’s rest
        In this section of the warning, Canaan is   prefigures the Millennial kingdom. This
        set forth as a type of the promised spiritual   is implied by the terms “the seventh day”
        rest the Hebrews were to possess by   and “another day” (Heb 4:4,8; see 2:5).
        faith and obedience, the purpose being   Space forbids elaboration, but the Hebrew
        to ensure that “no one may fall after the   believers  would have  been  cognisant
        same example of not hearkening to the   of this application. Despite what some
        word” (4:11 JND).                     beautiful hymns suggest, Canaan is not a
                                              figure of heaven. There are several reasons
        1  Bible quotations in this article are from the KJV   for this: there was work to do, there was
        unless otherwise noted.               perpetual sin, the enemy was always in

        196 TRUTH kTidings   July 2024
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