And to whom did He swear that they would not enter His rest, but to those who were disobedient? Hebrews 3:18.

Today your LORD (יהוה) God (אלהים) says:

When I gave My people the promised land as their inheritance, besides referring to it as entering their inheritance I also referred to it as entering My rest.

“Today, if you would hear His voice, do not harden your hearts, as at Meribah, as in the day of Massah in the wilderness, when your fathers tested Me, they tried Me, though they had seen My work. For forty years I loathed that generation, and said they are a people who err in their heart, and they do not know My ways. Therefore I swore in My anger, truly they shall not enter into My rest.” Psalm 95:7-11.

My rest. What is that? The word I use in Psalm 95 is not Shabbat but menuchah (מְנוּחָה), which means a resting place of security, healing, and peace. It is used for the comfort and security of matrimony, of having a safe place where you are provided for and cherished, where you can be at rest. It is a sacred place, a sanctuary of peace where one is accepted and loved. It is the same word used in Psalm 23:2, “The LORD is my shepherd, I shall not want. He makes me lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside waters of rest, He restores my soul.” Psalm 23:1-3.

When I described the land I promised them as their inheritance to My people, I revealed it as a place of abundance and peace, where I would give them rest (security) from their enemies on every side. They would be My people and I would be their God. I would surround them with the shield of My good will.

“You shall therefore keep every commandment which I am commanding you today, so that you may be strong and go in and possess the land into which you are about to cross to possess it; so that you may prolong your days on the land which the LORD swore to your fathers to give to them and to their descendants, a land flowing with milk and honey. For the land, into which you are entering to possess it, is not like the land of Egypt from which you came, where you used to sow your seed and water it with your foot like a vegetable garden. But the land into which you are about to cross to possess it, a land of hills and valleys, drinks water from the rain of heaven, a land for which the LORD your God cares; the eyes of the LORD your God are always on it, from the beginning even to the end of the year. It shall come about, if you listen obediently to my commandments which I am commanding you today, to love the LORD your God and to serve Him with all your heart and all your soul, that He will give the rain for your land in its season, the early and late rain, that you may gather in your grain and your new wine and your oil. He will give grass in your fields for your cattle, and you will eat and be satisfied. Deuteronomy 11:8-15.

So the LORD gave Israel all the land which He had sworn to give to their fathers, and they possessed it and lived in it. And the LORD gave them rest on every side, according to all that He had sworn to their fathers, and no one of all their enemies stood before them; the LORD gave all their enemies into their hand. Not one of the good promises which the LORD had made to the house of Israel failed; all came to pass. Joshua 21:43-45.

And what were some of those promises? To clear out their enemies before them, to give them battle strategies and great victories, to prosper them, that there would be no poor or sick among them, I would bless their bread and their water and there would be no one feeble and no miscarriage, and I would provide for all their needs by teaching them to profit and the way they should go and giving success to the work of their hands. I would give them the power to make wealth to confirm My Covenant with them.

I promised to give them beautiful cities they did not build, large and spacious homes with fruit trees and vineyards that they did not plant, and wells that they did not dig. In other words, everything supplied without the back breaking toil they had known as slaves in Egypt that did not prosper them but only their masters. They were to come to that inheritance of rest and operate with dominion authority. They were to live the Blessing of Abraham. And My blessing makes rich and adds no sorrowful toil with it.

But you will see a recurring theme here that later I sum up for you in the New Testament in a critical look back of why the first generation of My people out of Egypt failed to enter My rest. Disobedience to My Word.

And to whom did He swear that they would not enter His rest, but to those who were disobedient? Hebrews 3:18.

Hardened hearts to My voice so that they turned away from My Words and sinned against Me. Always testing Me and trying Me to see if I would provide for them in the wilderness even though they had seen My mighty works in the great deliverance I wrought for them to lift them up and clear them from the yoke of slavery.

And that disobedience sprang from a lack of faith in My goodness and My promises which led to disobedience to My Word. They did not trust Me or honor Me as their provider, deliverer and healer. Instead, they treated Me like an enemy in many ways by testing Me and never resting in Me. Always holding back to be their own provider and boss, never willing to go forward with Me with no doubts or fear of a dreaded result. All Joshua saw ahead of him was My good promises that made him bold to enter the land, but it was not so with the majority of My people whom I redeemed out of slavery.

And so it is today for I have redeemed and offer salvation to every person. I am offering all eternal life but many refuse to come to Me to have that life. And even many who profess to love Me reject discipline and find it burdensome to curtail their flesh. Others just do not trust Me so they hold back and make no commitment to My Word. And many just disobey because of the hardness of their hearts to My Word. They scorn it and consider themselves “enlightened.” Like Adam and Eve.

If you are willing and obey you will have the good of the land, but if you refuse and rebel your own words will be the sword that takes down your blessing.

The wise woman builds the house, but the foolish one tears it down with her own hands. The only way the devil can destroy your life is if he can get you to destroy yourself.

How does he do that? He steals the Word from those who do not value it, takes the little they think they have, and entices them with the life of empty show, which is the lust of the flesh (making your stomach your god, and addictions to food, drugs and alcohol to rule your will, sexual immorality, anger, and the like), the lust of the eyes (greed, idolatry, theft, deceit, jealousy and envy), and the pride of life (making man above God, self-glorification, contempt of others, comparison to others as lower, prejudice, judgment of others as not as good as you, refusal to serve others needs). And from the pride of life comes both self-worship, self-glorification, pride, and excessive involvement with self and your own goodness at one end, and fear, depression, regret, remorse, shame, and guilt over mistakes made, sins committed, and opportunities lost at the other end.

Do not love the world nor the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh and the lust of the eyes and the boastful pride of life, is not from the Father, but is from the world. The world is passing away, and also its lusts; but the one who does the will of God lives forever. 1 John 2:15-17.

Disobedience requires discipline to be administered. And this is not negative but positive. Train up a child in the way he should go and he will not depart from it when he is older and on his own. Whom I love, I discipline. Why? So you will have a long, profitable and good life on the land I give you.

THE GOAL OF ALL DISCIPLINE IS SELF-CONTROL. Which is contained in the fruit of the Spirit. The only way to be at rest with yourself and others, to have peace in your heart and your mind, is self-control. When your soul (your mind, will, and emotions) is out of control, your life will be miserable. There is no peace for the wicked, they are tossed about like the stormy sea.

My son, do not reject the discipline of the LORD or loathe His reproof, for whom the LORD loves He reproves, even as a father corrects the son in whom he delights. Proverbs 3:11-12.

You have not yet resisted to the point of shedding blood in your striving against sin; 5 and you have forgotten the exhortation which is addressed to you as sons, “My son, do not regard lightly the discipline of the LORD, nor faint when you are reproved by Him; for those whom the LORD loves He disciplines, and He scourges every son whom He receives.” It is for discipline that you endure; God deals with you as with sons; for what son is there whom his father does not discipline? But if you are without discipline, of which all have become partakers, then you are illegitimate children and not sons. Furthermore, we had earthly fathers to discipline us, and we respected them; shall we not much rather be subject to the Father of spirits, and live? For they disciplined us for a short time as seemed best to them, but He disciplines us for our good, so that we may share His holiness. All discipline for the moment seems not to be joyful, but sorrowful; yet to those who have been trained by it, afterwards it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness. Therefore, strengthen the hands that are weak and the knees that are feeble, and make straight paths for your feet, so that the limb which is lame may not be put out of joint, but rather be healed. Pursue peace with all men, and the sanctification without which no one will see the LORD. See to it that no one comes short of the grace of God; that no root of bitterness springing up causes trouble, and by it many be defiled. Hebrews 12:5-15.

A good parent does not want his child ruined by unwise behavior that will destroy that child’s future, health, and life. No parent wants their child to fail in life, they want their children to be happy and prosperous. And when the child is young and at home, they want a child who gives blessing and a peaceful life to them. Not one who is uncontrollable and makes their lives not worth living in the home and brings trouble and loss upon them and the family.

And when a child is young you accept some behaviors that would be totally unacceptable as they mature. And when they reach adulthood, you expect them to discipline themselves.

But if we judged ourselves rightly, we would not be judged. But when we are judged, we are disciplined by the Lord so that we will not be condemned along with the world. 1 Corinthians 11:31.

And so it is with your spiritual growth as well. Examine yourself and see if you are in the faith. For the reason the Israelites rebelled and never entered My rest was that they did not mix their faith with My promises.

Test yourselves to see if you are in the faith; examine yourselves! Or do you not recognize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you—unless indeed you fail the test? 2 Corinthians 13:5.

You have the inheritance before you of the promised land of rest—no torment in your mind or body, no lack of any good thing, only shalom peace. The beauty of a life of rest in Me. Shalom. All is well. You are safe in Me. Just be willing and obey and you shall have the best of the land, and all in the rest with Me.