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Thursday, May 3, 2012

How To Recognize Institutional Christianity

How To Recognize Institutional Christianity
A house built on sand.

A few years back before we ever heard of the term "institutional" Christianity, the closest thing to that was the  mysterious ecclesistical structures of Catholicism and some other groups. Words like "prelate", "parish", "diocese",  abbots, monestaries, and others were shrouded in obscurity. Since we read our Bibles fairly regularly, and found none of those terms in Holy Writ, we  brushed them off as non-relevant to our spiritual reality.

As my wife and I became more involved with our Pentecostal denominational church, we became familiar with our own SectionsDistrictsRegionsDistrict PresbyterSuperintendentsGeneral Superintendent, the UPC General Boardand other "officials". 

Like our Catholic brethren we nodded and blithely accepted these positions andtitles as "normal" and the way things were done.  Our focus was more on getting people baptized and filled with the Holy Ghost than it was pondering the ecclesiastical structure we were part of.
Without us being remotely aware of it, we had become part of the Institutional Church.
(referred to as the IC)

Because we loved God and His Word, to us it was not even in our conversation although as licensed ministers with the organization, we attended District Conference meetings, Ministerial fellowships, but never attended the Holy Grail called "General Conference" held every year. 

Later in the corporate life of our beloved church, we were led by the pastor into becoming a State Registered, 501c3non-profit organization called a "church", and recognized by the IRS as such.
(BTW. the pastor profited very nicely from the corporation. He appointed the board, and he came up with the By-Laws which governed our assembly. He was also the only one on the payroll and personally administered the checking accounts. We found out we also had a "church charter".  

In other words, we were now a corporation, i.e. a legal entity!
Our legal name was "Life Challenge, Inc." 
We were also licensed by our city as we owned and occupied a commercial building down town.  Because we were a 501c3 tax-exempt corporation called a "church", we needed to have a CEO, Secretary, and Church Board. I was a member of the board. In addtion, we now had a dozen pages of BY-LAWS and "Membership" requirements.

Because we were a 501c3, non-profit "church", tax-exempt status, and our "contributions" to the corporation that was called Life Challenge Church, "donations" could now be recorded for tax-deductions from the IRS.
BTW, "donations" were a mandatory 10% for voting members. Corporation members agreed to abide to church By-Laws and rules governing the assembly which included voting rights, tax-deductions, and the expectation of finncial commitment

Leadership requirements were spelled out in the membership Rules and included signed agreement to pay a 10% tithe and 5% offering. 
As we morphed into an independent "Evangelical, Inter-denominational"assembly after leaving the denomination, we modified the corporation  and membership rules
Still, as is very common, the pastors family remained in sole control of spending (general fund) and the tithe account. The 10% tithe requirement remained, as well as a modified "loyalty" pledge for anyone in ministry ranging from Sunday School teachers to Choir. Board members had an unwritten expectation to be solid financial supporters.

Next, as the church grows into a structure, DEPARTMENTS are formed and people are given TITLES for their departments. "Benevolent Ministry", Women's Auxillary", "Food Ministry" Childrens Ministry, Music Ministry, "Video Ministry", "Sound or Audio Ministry", "Youth Ministry", "Women's Ministries" are a few examples of various departments that are represented. 

We sat in on many of these meetings, as well as our Corporate BOARD meetings where the Pastor CEO oversaw the TreasurerSecretary, and Board Members. As a Board of Directors, we oversaw the church operations and conducted business meetings.

Typical Church Government
In the IC world, the hierarchy structure of authority works like or similar to this in the LOCAL assembly:
  1. (Bishop. -sometimes a titled Bishop may have some authority over the pastor. He may be part of the assembly, a semi-retired minister, or an out-of-town person of importance.) 
    pastors wife, and or associate pastors              
     (and their Head(s)elders
    official members
    regular attendees
In some churches like this:
     2. Church Board
          assistant pastors or associate pastors
          attendees and visitors

And in some:
 Pastors family run the church.
Complete control, ownership, and administration by the pastor and his family. (See our article "Nepotism: the Family church")
A retiring pastor may install his son or son in law as pastor and retain control behind the scenes.
Family members may be salaried, become Youth Pastor, or other "plum" positions within the assembly whether they are scripturally qualified or not.

Of course, there are variations many

In the hierarchy, there may be either a Bishop over the pastor, or a titled denominational position. Sometimes the lines of authority are blurred, overlap, or not clear.

The folks in the pew that just go to a "church" to worship God most likely have no idea of who or how the church is "run".
The church corporation may even have a President, Vice President, CEO, CFO, Secretary-Treasure, Board, etc. Not only do "churches" run this way, but so do most, if not all famous "ministries". 

So there is a definite "business side" to most ministries. Some for better, some for worse. When writing "The Tithe That Binds" God told me to go find out about 501c3 church organization. I was shocked, and you should be also! 

Here is one of many sites that explain this agreement with the "beast", our government and the IRS.
That's right kiddies, there is an excellent chance YOUR church and favorite ministry is married to a worldly kingdom ruled at the very top by Satan.

But because "churches" do not openly disclose this in their advertising or in the Sunday brochure-program, it takes a little more effort by asking the RIGHT QUESTIONS from the smiling people.

Do you have a church board?
Are you 501c3 registered so our donations may be deducted on our taxes?
Who is the head of this church?
Can I see the "Rules for Members"? 
What Departments do you have? Childrens? Benevolent? Food Pantry?
Are there written "leadership requirements" ?
Is the pastor on a payroll and or taking tithes for his support?

That is more than enough, there are plenty more, but they will get suspicious real fast when you ask intelligent questions. 
 -Or you can play it safe and just ask  if they have Sunday School, a Nursery,  and what time is the evening service...

Politics and financial manipulation and shenanigans abound in these structures, especially the family run types.   People, including pastors,  take carnal ownership of ministries, positions, titles, and people. The Organization takes on a life of its' own and begins to exist for its' own comfort, name, and purpose. 
The church also becomes controlling and threats real or perceived  are cause for damage control, mind and thought control, manipulation, and loyalty enforcement. 
Protecting ones turf and position are very important especially when ones ministerial livelihood is involved.

We know, because we saw and participated in that process.

Formerly loved and cherished brethren may find themselves suddenly outside, marginalized, avoided, or expelled. -sometimes in the wake of misunderstanding mis-communications, and mis-reported words.
The Institution is what must be preserved....

Now go back and look at the words highlighted in red, these reveal the nature and characteristics if the IC.  The majority of these have absolutely nothing to do with scripture EXCEPT where Jesus warned "beware of the leaven of Herod".

  If you think God is happy with these institutions, understand these are the structures supporting the "Nicolaitane error which I hate". -Jesus said twice in Rev. 2, and are houses "built on sand".

Robes are Right, Pants are Wrong. Join the Holy Robers

Please everyones, this is serrious. Don't laff. 

This here true revelashen is right out of the scripture and many verses prove it is true.

God's TRUE STANDARD of HOLY clothing has been discarded by the church for too long.
No more carnal backslid clothing for us. After a study in the Bible, nowhere, not even one single verse  has men wearing modern pants!  God showed this truth to me, a true revelation!

Every holy man of God including Jesus and the saints in heaven wear ROBES.
                        ===> This is easily proven from the Bible itself <====

Pants on men is obviously wrong, probably sinful.
===>  TRUE Holiness obviously pertains to men wearing robes.
White appears to be the only acceptable color to God.

FACT:  pants came from the WORLDLY clothing styles not the Bible.
FACT:  Men who do not wear robes are immodest and show their body shapes.
FACT:  never in scripture is a man described wearing pants.
FACT:  Jesus, our example, wore a robe.
Italian suits came from the country where the Catholic church is headquartered.
This is obviously a Catholic conspiracy slipped in on the protestant churches in order for stylish Italian suits to become desired worldly apparel. What trickery!
But Catholic priests in the Vatican and the pope still wear robes, they must be holy, but they erred, WRONG COLOR if they are not white!

In Genesis 3, "God made them robes".  This is a true fact.
1Kings 22:10 Now the king of Israel and Jehoshaphat the king of Judah were sitting each on his throne, arrayed in their robes

Even the UN-righteous scribes wore LONG robes, and Jesus said:
Luke 20:46 Beware of the scribes, who desire to walk in long robes,
-see how Jesus affirmed the scribes robes in Matthew 23?
2 saying, The scribes and the Pharisees sit on Moses seat:
3 all things therefore whatsoever they bid you, these do and observe
   ===> obviously the scribes long robes were included in "these do and observe".

(no pants, dresses, or shorts permitted!! )
Revelation 22:14 Blessed are they that wash their robes, that they may have the right to come to the tree of life, and may enter in by the gates into the city.

-do you see that? ROBES give you the right to enter into heavenly Jerusalem!!

In Jesus time, what kind of male-female symbols did they have around the Holy Temple bathrooms in Israel if God put them in robes?  
Even the Jews in ancient Israel, wore modest robes when going to the temple, and the men’s bathroom signs would have showed men’s apparel: a man-figure in a robe.

The holy ROBE also pertained  to the priests in the LAW:
It was illegal, immoral, and unlawful for a holy priest to wear worldly pants. God never took that out in the New Testament because in Revelation he still gave ROBES to the saints.

FACT:  Any Priest under the Old Testament law would be stoned for putting on worldly pants, which was breaking God's lawful holiness standard.
Here's proof:

PRIESTS ROBE had skirt:
Exodus 39:24 And they made upon the skirts of the robe…..
Here, God commands the priests garment to be a ROBE:

-Because in the New Testament, we too are priest's to God, as God commanded priest's in His LAW, to wear robes, Jesus wore a robe, and Saints in heaven have robes.
And since we too are priests:
Revelation 1:6 and he made us to be a kingdom, to be priests unto his God and Father
Then we NT priests must even wash our robe so we can enter into God’s Holy City.
Revelation 22:14         Blessed are they that wash their robes, that they may have the right to come to the tree of life, and my enter in by the gates into the city.

From Bible history:

In the beginning, in Genesis 3:21, even though the Bible says "coats”, in the Hebrew original  the word is:  ku^tto^neth, meaning to cover ; a shirt: - coat, garment, robe.
 -according to the Strong's Concordance.
If God wanted men to wear pants, He would have made them pants in the garden, but no. He made them ROBES..  from Genesis to Revelation, it was ROBES.

God's prophet Samuel said SAUL wore a ROBE with skirt:
1Samuel 15:27 And as Samuel turned about to go away, Saul laid hold upon the skirt of his ROBE,

Backslid Israel under judgement  loses robe!
Isaiah 3:24 And it shall come .. and instead of a robe, a girding of sackcloth; branding instead of beauty.  >>> Wow, -"instead of a robe" ???

God says He will clothe with robe!
Isaiah 22:21 and I will cloth him with thy ROBE, and strengthen him with thy girdle
Godly messenger wears robe!

The angel at Jesus' empty tomb is arrayed in a what?
 Mark 16:5 And entering into the tomb, they saw a young man sitting on the right side, ARRAYED IN A WHITE ROBE....

Lost prodigal son accepted and is given ROBE!:
Luke 15:22 But the father said to his servants, Bring forth quickly the BEST ROBE, and put it on him

Martyred saints given ROBES:
Revelation 6:11 And there was given them to each one A WHITE ROBE
 Therefore we require all converts to wear robes after being baptized. It is God’s true way.
We will contract with a clothing supplier and sell various qualities of robes in the church foyer as a fundraiser as we meet the needs of the saints for true, Godly apparel.

NOW Ask Yourself This Question: Would Jesus wear pants?
When ALL the Godly men IN THE BIBLE wore ROBES?
Anyone teaching different is going against God's standard of modesty.
- Godly men still wore robes in the Old Testament and NEW Testament.

FACT: ALL martyrs in the tribulation are given WHITE ROBES!
FACT: Jesus wore a robe.
FACT: God "made them ROBES" when they sinned in the garden.
    -Solid proof right there that robes are God's only approved covering!!!

Both "before the lawand after the law, the Standard for the righteous was robes.

Ecclesiastes 9:8 Let thy *garments* be always white...
begged-; a covering, clothing; - apparel, clothes, garment, raiment, robe

How simple! White robes only, how did we miss that?

Revelation 3:5 He that overcometh shall thus be arrayed in white *garments*;
===> in the Greek, it is the SAME WORD as Jesus wore!
G2440 ἱμάτιον himation him-at'-ee-on, --->a dress (inner or outer): - apparel, cloke, clothes,garment, raiment, robe, vesture.

Rev 6:11 And there was given them to each one A WHITE ROBE
There it is, folks,  the honest truth, verse after verse after verse..
All ministers in our new denomination will follow this true, Biblical holiness standard.
After all, in Revelation it is a salvation issue. Only God's true holy standard is righteous.. 

From the mail bag, some responses to questions:

"WHY are pants on men are wrong."
1. Pants show off a man’s body, that’s why God made robes.
2. I proved robes from scripture and if we apply the scripture to clothing styles, pants are not acceptable.... on a man. Robes are required in Revelation 6 and 7.

Question.  When did men begin to wear pants?
answer:     Who cares? At some point, men began to wear pants as they left God.
Before that, men of God wore robes.

Question:  Aren’t men’s pants modest?
answer:     No, they are sin because they show the outline of his back-end if he has one.

Question:  What if a man comes to church but cannot afford to buy robes?
answer:     He should use sheets and make sure they are pinned so not to show any leg. 

Question:  What if the man needs to run or chase something?
answer:     God will help him.

Question: What if a Christian is not wearing a robe and dies?
Answer:    Too bad they lose out. We advise short baths and showers and get the robe back on.. If they are in a car wreck and are still alive, make sure the hospital puts a robe on them.

Question:  What about “girding up your loins” was like pants?
Answer:   Scripture does not give details for girding up their robe between their legs thus inventing pants. That is silly.
Anyone with a mind not poisoned by false teaching would never think that was how it was done. Only a Pharisee would deceive people into wearing pants when God ordered robes.

What holiness-loving, modesty-preaching, un-worldly clothes wearing pastor would disapprove of that?
Can you imagine a church building full of saints wearing them and the IMPACT it would have on sinners?  Think about the youth car wash where they are wearing those. What a testimony!

I hope y'all saw the humor.. and how easy it is to make a seeming truth into error.

The irony is that we can easily prove robes are Biblical and it is sheer irony that every justification used from Deuteronomy 22:5 against women in pants can be applied to men wearing them too.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Putting the Sabbath to Rest

Putting the Sabbath to Rest
by Rory

To-day we have a wonderful  sabbath rest to enjoy!

Would you like to see a revelation of a New Testament sabbath we all could use, near the end of this post there one that is overlooked.
The sabbath laws
 and other commands were first given as part of the body of the law from the Old Covenant.  

1. The Old Covenant law said to "DO ALL" many, many times, and this was repeated by Paul in Gal. 4:21 "Tell me, you that desire to be under the lawdo ye not hear the law?"
and he went on:
Gal 5:3-4    I testify again to every man that received circumcision, that he is a debtor to do the whole law.  
You are severed from Christ, you (who) would be *justified by the law; ye are fallen away from grace.  
*justify: to render innocent, justify, be righteous.
And again in James 2:10    For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one pointhe is guilty of all.

So where was sabbath commanded?
-In the Old Covenant law, of course.
 -Just like the new moons, feasts of Israel, dietary laws, and a multitude of other commands that confused Christians are often entangled with. (Gen 17:13/ Lev 12:3)

"The law" included every sabbath law and command:   
Deuteronomy 8:1 All the commandments .. I command thee ... shall ye observe to do...
Leviticus 19:37 Therefore shall ye observe all my statutes, and all my judgments, and do them
now please, give close attention to sabbath law:
Exodus 31:14 You shall keep the sabbath, it is holy to you: every one that defiles it shall surely be put to death... Remember, the law said "do ALL"

Keep "Do ALL" in mind when you read what the disagreeing readers say.
It is very clear. "DO ALL..." means you can't go in and "diminish ought" from the parts your religion tells you that you cannot do or are not capable of doing. (such as keeping the sabbath upon penalty of death or keeping the feasts of the Lord IN Jerusalem 3 times a year, as God commanded.)

 >>>>> a reader who disagreed wrote:
"First I see you lumping together all of the Sabbaths, but it is only the seventh day Sabbath that was included in the 10 commandments <<<<<
But I respond that God is the One that "lumped" ALL of His commands, statutes, and ordinances into the body of the whole law.)

The sabbath was one of the laws, whether you choose it as the 4th commandment, or "do all.." requirements of the sabbath law observances.

It was not just only one day a week. 
-Plus the TWO mid week sabbaths, (one was on Passover).
-Plus there was a year long sabbath every 7th year. 
-Plus on "EVERY Sabbath" there is to be a burnt offering:
"On the Sabbath day, make an offering of two lambs a year old without defect, together with its drink offering and a grain offering of two-tenths of an ephah of fine flour mixed with oil. This is the burnt offering for every Sabbath, in addition to the regular burnt offering and its drink offering" (Num. 28:9,10).

We all know it is impossible to sacrifice a lamb on every sabbath, what a offense that would be, to Jesus' sacrifice.
Those who insist they are keeping the sabbath, and insist that others keep it  have a huge problem. By this one verse we can see according to the letter, they have already broken the sabbath law.

>>>>> a reader who disagreed said
"We can all have different ways to keep the Sabbath, but who cares, as long as we are keeping the Sabbath and honoring God." <<<<<

My answer: But there are no "different ways to keep the sabbath".
God cares and was VERY specific on how to keep the sabbaths. (there was more than just the one on the 7th day of the week). 
Keeping a partial sabbath your own way is dishonoring God who told them how to keep the sabbath. So If you "keep sabbath" any other way than the way God gave it (including the death penalty), you are guilty of breaking God's Law that you put yourself under. 

Ezekiel 20:12 Moreover also I gave them my sabbaths, to be a sign between me and them, that they might know that I am the LORD that sanctify them.

Notice the plural, which includes the sabbath year:
Leviticus 25:4 But in the seventh year shall be a sabbath of rest unto the land, a sabbath for the LORD 

Galatians 3:10
For as many as are of the **works of the law are under the cursefor it is writtenCursed is every one that continues not in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them... 

The problem "sabbath keepers" have is they pick out the sabbath from Exodus, but fail to realize God had specific instructions for how He wanted it kept. If they did not keep it the way God said, they were guilty of breaking the sabbath.

Jesus knew the law and taught others to keep it because they were yet under the Old Covenant prior to the death of the testator, Jesus Christ. see Hebrews 8.

2.   Where do you find the 10 Commandments? 
They are given in Exodus 20, and again in Deuteronomy 5 to Israel.
Dt.5: 31 ... and I will speak to you all the commandments, and the statutes, and the ordinances, which you shall teach them, that they may do them in the land which I give them to possess it. (BTW, we do not live in that land.)

(please read the article about the sabbath laws and the parts they never told you about or excused for not doing) 

3.    Let's be honest. You want to keep this law or that one, a feast here, a sabbath there. A dietary law or two, a tithe.  There are plenty of others that some think we need to follow, and much confusion.
Even most feast-keepers and law-observant Christians can't agree how to follow OT laws pertaining to them.

Psalms 119:160 The sum of thy word is truth...
We must learn from the New Testament in order to get the "sum" total regarding the truth, or else we are guilty of "diminishing" from the WHOLE Word of God. 
Exodus 34:21 Six days thou shalt work, but on the seventh day shall you rest 

This promise was also mentioned by Isaiah, a prophecy of a future "rest" :
Isa 28:11 .. by men of strange lips and with another tongue will he speak to this people  12 to whom he said, This is the restgive rest to him that is weary; and this is the refreshing: yet they would not hear.

When did this begin to be fulfilled?
It began on Pentecost in Acts 2 and continued as God gave the Holy Spirit to them that believed. (Mark 16:18, Luke 24;47-49: Acts 1:8, etc.):
Acts 3:19 Repent and turn again, that your sins may be blotted out, that so there may come seasons of refreshing from the presence of the Lord. Thus the prophesied "refreshing" came with the baptism of the Holy Spirit as Isaiah prophesied, tongues included.

4.  If we walk in the fullness of the Spirit, we are not in bondage to the works of the law as it is writtenGal. 5:18 But if ye are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law.
Romans 7:6 But now we have been discharged from the law, having died to that wherein we were held; so that we serve in newness of the spirit, and not in oldness of the letter.

  Was the sabbath ever given as an ordinance to the church through the apostles?
 Can you find any instruction to a church or saint in the church epistles for that? (When I looked, I could not find any)

Acts 15 The Jewish elders did NOT tell the gentile churches to observe the sabbath!
-if it was to be observed as a universal ordinance, this was the time and place to decree sabbath keeping because they were debating which laws to have the churches observe..

5.  What was the Jewish apostle Paul referring to in these next verses written to Christians: 

Galatians 4:10  You observe days, and months, and times, and years. ??
Colossians 2:16 Let no man therefore condemn you in meat, or in drink, or in respect of an holyday, or of the new moon, or of the sabbath days: ???

Why was no one to judge or condemn the Colossians in regard to sabbath observances?
Simply because they were never commanded to observe the sabbath! 

The plural use of "days".
Paul was intimately familiar with ALL sabbath days, including the Passover feast midweek high-sabbaths, and the sabbath years.
But he did not "cherry pick" sabbath law to make a convenient observance for Christians.

Why did he chastise the Galatians?
 "you observe days... months.. years...times.."
-it was because they had become "leavened" to observe the sabbath, circumcision
 and other laws according to what was given in the old Covenant!

Consistent with this is that in all the book of Acts through Revelation, there is not one reminder to keep the sabbath, circumcision, sacrifices, tithes, or feasts.... 

6.  We are in the NEW Covenant
That should be obvious, the old covenant has been 
"changed", "dis-annulled",  "blotted out", and "nailed to the cross".
Hebrews 7:12
the priesthood being changed, there is of necessity a change also of the law.
Ephesians 2:15 
having abolished in the flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in ordinances
col. 2:14
having blotted out the bond written in ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us: and he has taken it out of the way, nailing it to the cross;
And so Galatians 5:18  if you are led of the Spirit, you are not under the law

In Hebrews, speaking to those who had known the Law, the writer speaks of the "rest" God had given.

The "rest" on the sabbath day and all the sabbaths were spiritual types of something that would come later through a
 "better covenant":
Hebrews 10:1 For the law having a shadow of good things to come, and not the very image of the things...
Hebrews 8:6 But now hath he obtained a more excellent ministry, by how much also he is the mediator of a better covenant, which was established upon better promises.

Let's look at a few SABBATH things here:
Hebrews 4:9 There remains therefore a sabbath rest for the people of God.
"sabbath" is "sabbatismos": i.e. a keeping sabbath. It is an on-going, continual sabbath

Now it changes.
Have you ever noticed the word "to-day" in this passage about the sabbath in Hebrews???

Hebrews 3:7 Wherefore, even as the Holy Spirit saith, To-day if ye shall hear his voice, 
Hebrews 3:13 But exhort one another day by dayso long as it is called To-day; lest any one of you be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin.

THINK: How is "day by day" called "today"?  

Hebrews 3:15 while it is saidTo-day if ye shall hear his voice, Harden not your hearts, as in the provocation. 
Hebrews 4:7 he again defines a certain day, <calling it> To-day, saying in David, so long a
 time afterward, To-day if ye shall hear his voice, Harden not your hearts.

  Have you gotten the revelation for "to-day"?

Did Jesus promise a rest for only on the 7th day? 
-or is there a "rest" remaining to the people of God for 
 if you hear His voice..."
The "rest" is for "today", i.e., for the sons of God to enter into our NT promises by faith, as by believing they have received. (Mark 11:23-24)

Since the works are finished, we should believe and rest from our own works to save, heal, and deliver ourselves. The promises are past-tense yet they are for us today.
Because of this, we need to know what God said, especially in the New Testament.

Heb.4:3 For we who have believed do enter into that rest, (i.e. a spiritual Sabbath rest). There remains therefore a sabbath rest, (literally "a keeping of rest") for the people of God. 
This constant "keeping of rest" every day ("to-day") through the past tense promises is our New Testament spiritual Sabbath.
10) For he that is entered into his rest hath himself also rested from his works, as God did from his. 
Our faith in each of these promises brings us into more of the rest

For example, if we believe that "by his stripes you were healed," then we will not keep seeking a healing but will rest accepting that it was accomplished at the cross. This is real faith and pleases the Father when we trust HIM to meet our need.
Through believing the promises (salvation, healing, deliverance, provision) we enter into the on-going "sabbath" rest from our own works.

Those who continue to earn favor for what God has freely given believe in salvation by works. Heb.4:10 For he that is entered into his rest has rested from his works ….
Heb.3:19 And we see that they were not able to enter in (and receive the promises) because of unbelief.

To-day the promise of rest is when we believe and become partakers of Christ (His health, holiness, and blessing), "if we hold fast the beginning of our confidence firm unto the end".
-i.e. resting in faith He will do for us what He said in His word!

THIS is "the rest" that the sabbath foreshadowed, as we cease from our own efforts and works and we "rest" in God's salvation to save, heal, deliver, and provide for us.

Is it a certain day we enter in to His rest for these promises? 
Hebrews 3:7 Wherefore, even as the Holy Spirit says, 
To-day if ye shall hear his voice

We have stumbled into the secret place of rest, because e
very day is "to-day"! 

He no longer limits a certain day (the 7th), but now in the New Covenant gives us the foreshadowed type from the old sabbath to our  EVERY DAY  rest.

That  is what "to-day" is. 

So what is the point here? -just some more Bible knowledge to fuss over, another do's and don't?
Here is the profound point of sabbath rest. The REAL Rest.
It is when we "rest" in Christ and have peace over the cares, worries, and struggles of life.
When we are not entering into His Rest, we worry, are anxious, fearful, stressed, oppressed, even to the point of sickness.
When our cares are cast upon Him and we leave them in His hands, we rest as He works them out for us.
Praise the Lord Jesus.

 Scripture Notes:
* the curse: as given in detail by God and described in Deuteronomy 28.
** "to-day" as given in Hebrews as relating to the rest:
Strongs 2250 def:
-the day, used of the natural day, or the interval between sunrise and sunset
-Any part of a day is counted as a whole day, hence the expression "three days and three nights" does not mean literally three whole days, but at least one whole day plus part of two other days.
-used of time in general

***past tense promises
we who believe "rest" in: 
"By His stripes ye WERE healed
Colossians 3:1 If then ye were raised together with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated on the right hand of God
1st Peter 1:18 knowing that ye were redeemed
Mat 5:31 Be not therefore anxious, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? 33 But seek ye first his kingdom, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.
Hebrews 4:3 For we which have believed do enter into rest

Mark 11:22 And Jesus answering saith unto them, Have faith in God.
23 Verily I say unto you, Whosoever shall say unto this mountain, Be thou taken up and cast into the sea; and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that what he saith cometh to pass; he shall have it.
24 Therefore I say unto you, All things whatsoever ye pray and ask for,believe that ye received them, and ye shall have them
Hebrews 10:14 For by one offering he has perfected for ever them that are sanctified.

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