Big Apple Chapel is a New Testament based church in New York City, modeled after the pattern of the early church, with a strong emphasis on following Christ as a community of His disciples.

  • Sunday - 10:30 am
  • 520 8th Ave, 16th floor
    New York, NY
  • phone: +1 (973) 837-1041


BAC Sermons

Scared Diligent

1998-01-01 Hebrews 4:1-11

1 Therefore, since a promise remains of entering His rest, let us fear lest any of you seem to have come short of it. 

I. Believers are to Fear

The thing which believers are to fear is missing their rest/reward/inheritance in the kingdom

Believers will miss their reward by failing to go far enough in their relationship of trust in God

2 For indeed the gospel was preached to us as well as to them; but the word which they heard did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in those who heard it. 

II. Hearing Isn’t Enough

The Good News of a future rest doesn’t do anyone any good (profit) unless one believes and acts upon the message.

3a For we believing (aorist participle) do enter that rest, (2:3 neglect; Jn 5:25; 13:26; 20:29 - all future; 2:20 46 yrs)

3b as He has said: "So I swore in My wrath, 'They shall not enter My rest,' " although the works were finished from the foundation of the world. 4 For He has spoken in a certain place of the seventh day in this way: "And God rested on the seventh day from all His works"; 5 and again in this place: "They shall not enter My rest." 

III. Disbelief Angers God

Not believing results in loss of God’s planned blessing of us.

God gets angry with believers who don’t obey.

God justly disciplines those who don’t obey, but in His mercy, doesn’t give them the full consequence of their sin.

6 Since therefore it remains that some must enter it, and those to whom it was first preached did not enter because of disobedience, 7 again He designates a certain day, saying in David, "Today," after such a long time, as it has been said: "Today, if you will hear His voice, Do not harden your hearts."  

IV. Disbelief results in Disobedience

Disbelief comes from allowing ourselves to believe even little lies, leading to a dusty conscience, and a hardened heart

Hardening/callousness occurs when fail to stay under God’s protection, ignore little promptings, and deaden our nerves {see last week}

 8 For if Joshua had given them rest, then He would not afterward have spoken of another day. 

V. The Rest/reward is Future

, in the kingdom, when Jesus returns, sets it up, rewards the faithful and shares His rule over the earth.

9 There remains therefore a rest for the people of God. 10 For he who has entered His rest has himself also ceased from his works as God did from His.  

VI. The Rest/reward is after we do our Work

, not before, nor in place of our work. (Eph 2:10)

11Let us therefore be diligent to enter that rest, lest anyone fall according to the same example of disobedience. 

VII. No Work(s), No Rest.

Getting your rest/reward requires consistent, persistent, diligent effort, enough to keep you sweating.

The choice is work and be blessed or disbelieve, disobey and suffer loss.

We’ll fail to work if we fail to believe.

2Pe 3:14  Wherefore, beloved, seeing that ye look for such things, be diligent that you may be found of him in peace, without spot, and blameless.

Questions for Reflection/Discussion/Response:

1. Are people motivated more by fear of loss, love of relationship, or hope of reward (power/pleasure/possessions)?

2. Why do some people have a problem with a God who gets angry and swears (apart from the fact that He’s too much like them)?

3. Do you see any incompatibility between forgiveness based upon faith and reward based upon works?

4. What thinking (or lack of it) would give rise to the spurious concept of “faith-rest” as a present possession, apart from works? 

5. How would you rate your: fear of God? belief in God’s promises? Diligence in obeying God?  Are you emulable?