At that time Jesus answered and said, I thank thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because thou hast hid these things from the wise and prudent, and hast revealed them unto babes. Even so, Father: for so it seemed good in thy sight. All things are delivered unto me of my Father: and no man knoweth the Son, but the Father; neither knoweth any man the Father, save the Son, and he to whomsoever the Son will reveal him.
… Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.(Matthew 11:25-30)
At this point in Jesus’ journey, door were closing to him in all of the places where he had done his greatest miracles. What does Jesus do about it? He praises God!
He praises his Father, the Sovereign “Lord of Heaven and Earth” for hiding the things of God from the “wise of this age”, the ones who rely on their own “search” for wisdom, starting from themselves and confining themselves to their own intelligence or to the collected intelligence of man.
It has pleased the Father to hide things of Salvation from them, for as Paul would say, “The World by Wisdom knew not God”, and God himself has said, “I will destroy the wisdom of the wise…”. Human pride cuts the wise of this age off from the humble reception of Divine revelation.
To whom does God reveal the things of Salvation? To the Babes, the ones who like children, take on a dependent posture. “Unless you are converted and become as a little child you cannot enter into the Kingdom…”. To the humble God is willing to reveal the way of salvation.
For thus saith the high and lofty One that inhabiteth eternity, whose name is Holy; I dwell in the high and holy place, with him also that is of a contrite and humble spirit, to revive the spirit of the humble, and to revive the heart of the contrite ones.(Isaiah 57:15)
John Macarthur points out in his helpful book, “The Gospel According to Jesus” that the expression “to revive” in Isaiah, is the same in the greek Spetuagint, as the expression Jesus used here in vs 28 when he says,”I will give you rest”. Salvation is rest, Divinely given.
The knowledge of Jesus and of the Father, is salvation itself. Jesus prayed in the garden, “This is eternal life, that they may know thee, the only true God and Jesus Christ whom you have sent”. But this knowledge cannot be “discovered’ by man, nor can it be wrested from some depository , it can only be attained as a gift of love. Man cannot know God unless God reveals himself.
But Jesus, the only Son of the Father, looks up from the pages of scripture, into our souls and bids us, Come unto me… .
Are you loaded down with a burden of sin, guilt, self effort, attempting to please God ? Is your soul troubled at your own sin, unworthiness, and personal failure? Jesus is calling us to come, sit at His feet and simply “Learn of me (him)…”, whose “Yoke is easy and his burden is light…”, for what he requires of us, (Perfect Righteousness), he provides for us, (See 2 Corinthians 5:21).
The Yoke of Jesus is simple submission to him, it is a metaphor for discipleship. The weary and heavy laden are to abandon their own efforts at being righteous, or good enough for God’s heaven, and to allow themselves to be ‘yoked’ to the one who surely “bore our sins and carried our griefs”.
Because he is “meek and lowly”, the yoke he bids us submit to is “easy and light”. The intolerable load is that of sin and self! Serving self is a life long pursuit of the futile, because Self cannot ever be satisfied, as Satan’s minstrel Mick Jagger used to sing,”I can’t get no satisfaction”. Self defense, self justification, pretense and posturing are heavy burdens, they alienate us from God and from the only true and possible rest available.
Salvation, forgiveness and reconciliation with God; this is the only true rest! Have a good Sabbath!