The story of creation in Genesis concludes with God resting from all his work. I like to think he may have sat down. Because when Jesus had finished his work of salvation he rested by sitting down.
Hebrews 10:12 “But when this priest (Jesus Christ) had offered for all time one sacrifice for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Father.”
In Genesis 3 we read the tragedy of the first man and woman breaking faith with the creator God, exchanging faith in God for faith in themselves as gods; and from the beginning it did not go well. The immediate results were the experience of shame, fear and hiding from God. Into this desperately wrong scene it says in Genesis 3:8 “they heard the voice of the Lord as he as walking in the garden”. Could this be the Word of God , the Word that became flesh as Jesus Christ; this same person walking in the garden where sin had come; not repelled by the sin but drawn to bring salvation where sin had brought lostness and fear. It says the voice was walking calling out to man, “Where are you?”.
Can you hear the voice of God calling out through the ages to lost sons and daughters, “Where are you?”
The voice became clear and loud in when it took on human form in Jesus Christ; the living word of God who walked amongst people from the time of Genesis until the the cross. And on that cross the voice cried out; It is finished! And after his resurrection and ascension the voice sat down at the right of God the Father and is now waiting for us to sit with Him.
When we come to Christ, responding in faith to his call; we come to his glorious grace in which we receive forgiveness and redemption. We are made alive, raised up and seated with Christ, face to face; we sit down in rejoicing, rest, and reigning in life with Christ.
We sit down in the rejoicing in heaven as lost sons and daughters come home. Heaven is filled with singing, with songs of worship, praise and rejoicing; and one persons song of rejoicing becomes a song of deliverance for another.
Isaiah 35:10 says the redeemed of the Lord enter with singing.
Isaiah 52:8 “Burst into songs of joy together, you ruins of Jerusalem, for the Lord has comforted his people, he has redeemed Jerusalem”
When seated with Christ we have a perspective change, that while still in ruins we see our redemption coming and begin to sing songs of joy over what will be, not just what is.
Isaiah 54:1 “Song, O barren woman, you who never bore a child; burst into song, shout for joy, you who were never in labour; because more are the children of the desolate woman than of her who has a husband”.
There is a song in Jesus, a song of rejoicing over all those he sees coming to salvation through his work on the cross; he is sitting at the right hand of the Father singing songs of praise over us as we come home. (Hebrews 2:10-13) And as we sit with him we begin to sing the songs of praise and rejoicing, over our own salvation and the salvation of those still coming; and some of us write them into sings for all of us to sing.
The Spirit that makes us alive puts a song in our hearts a song of joy and praise for our salvation in Jesus Christ. And as we sing our song, not necessarily in good tune and structure, our song become a gate for another son or daughter to come home, a song of deliverance to set them free. (Isaiah 60:18, Psalm 32:7)
We are seated face to face with Jesus singing and resting. We are seated in rest with Jesus the author and finisher of our faith and our salvation.
Ephesians 2:8-9 “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith – and this not from yourselves, it is a gift of god – not by works, so that no one can boast.”
I want to emphasise the phrase “this is not from yourselves”. In these words I am humbled, I bring nothing with me when I come to Jesus, I come and rest in his work. At no point am I the standard or the measure; at all times I look to Jesus and rest in his finished work and sit down with him. I stop being ‘me’ focused and sin focused, and become Christ focused and life focused. I know when I am becoming me focused because fear begins to grow in me and grip me. But as I rest in Christ, fear has no place in me. The perfect love of my Father drives it out.
I am seated face to face with Christ; I join in his rejoicing over me; and rest in his finished work for me; and reign with him over life. Jesus has taken me back to the future. Back to Genesis 1:26-27, and Genesis 2:7; where God said let us make man in our image, and let them rule over all the earth, the picture is humanity created from the dust, breathed into by God, becoming a living person in the image of God, in fellowship with God above while ruling over the earth below. In Ephesians the dead in sin, physically alive but dead to God, are made alive in Christ when the Spirit breathes into them; and are raised up and seated with Christ while still on earth. So now the new person I am in Christ, face to face with Christ, reigns over the old person I was. I reign over my old life by agreeing with God and not with myself; and by ‘shouting down’ the lies of the devil that have become so entwined in who was that I thought they were me.