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Bible Dictionaries

Hastings' Dictionary of the New Testament

Rest (2)

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REST.1. There is in the Gospels frequent allusion to the value of rest as the purchase of preceding effort, the compensation that is provided for sore afflictions. The Sermon on the Mount, as the proclamation of the new Kingdom, guarantees such rest and peace to those who serve and suffer for the sake of that Kingdom (Matthew 5:1-12). Prosperity in the world can make no such promises (Luke 12:20; Luke 16:25).

2. As rest, physical, social, and religious, is an organic necessity of life, and is protected by conditions of time and place, it should not be set aside for effort that is uncalled for, or that confuses the lower and higher forms of rest. Such was the lesson given in the home at Bethany (Luke 10:42). Similarly, the lilies of the field, while developing to the full their own character in their own place, are content to remain lilies (Matthew 6:28-29).

3. There is an ignoble state of rest that may slothfully or blindly oppose the call to a higher and truer contentment (Matthew 11:17; Matthew 11:22, Luke 19:40). Christ’s gift is life abundant (John 10:10), but the bestowal involves asking, and faith’s exertion of knocking is expected at the entrance into life (Matthew 7:7).

4. In the parable of the Sower, the recompense is in the abundant harvest. This increase is the way of nature where hindering things cease to operate. The list of obstacles typifies the things that impoverish or prevent altogether the fruitfulness of discipleship. In the Kingdom of heaven the instinct of citizenship is to be rich toward God. Its gratification is not toil but rest (Matthew 11:28; see art. Repose).

Literature.—The subject is treated homiletically in many vols. of Sermons, as H. Allon, Indwelling Christ (1892), 41; Stopford Brooke, Gospel of Joy (1898), 123; R. Flint, Christ’s Kingdom (1865), 22; E. W. Moore, The Promised Rest (1904); R. Rainy, Sojourning with God (1902), 37; J. H. Jowett, Apostolic Optimism (1901), 87. See also ExpT [Note: xpT Expository Times.] ii. (1891) 110, viii. (1897) 239, x. (1899) 48, 104, xii. (1901) 466.

G. M. Mackie.

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Bibliography Information
Hastings, James. Entry for 'Rest (2)'. Hastings' Dictionary of the New Testament. 1906-1918.

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