Wednesday, October 3, 2018

A Foundation of Grace: A Place of Rest

Now it happened a they went that He entered a certain village; and a certain woman named Martha welcome Him into her house.

And she had a sister called Mary, who also sat at Jesus' feet and heard His word.

But Martha was distracted with much serving and she approached Him and said, "Lord, do you not care that my sister has left me to serve alone?  Therefore tell her to help me."

And Jesus answered and said to her, "Martha, Martha, you are worried and troubled about many things.

But one thing is needed, and Mary has chosen that good part which will not be taken away from her."-Luke 10:38-42

I love the story of Martha and Mary.  You will probably hear me say that a lot about many stories, and it is always true.  Stories communicate so much to us.  We can use our imaginations, see ourselves in their shoes, and learn truths that reach us in our hearts.  I think that is why Jesus used stories to teach.

Martha and Mary lived in the town of Bethany.  According to two different sources, the word Bethany means "house of affliction, house of dates, or house of depression or misery."  I also found one source that said it means, "house of figs." I find that very interesting because the first place we find figs in the Bible is with Adam and Eve, when they tried to cover their sin themselves. 

We have two women, sisters, and their brother Lazarus, living in this place.  And then Jesus comes.  

The two sisters are very different in their approach to Jesus.  Eventually this changes, and it is oh so beautiful!  But now, in this moment, they are very different.  

Both believe Him to be Lord.  Martha calls him Lord, and Mary is sitting at His feet in the posture of a disciple.  But they both respond to Him very differently.  I believe this to be a picture that God has given us of law and grace.

The Bible says Martha is distracted with much serving.  It is as though this is how she believes she can please the Lord.  She even goes to Him, obviously embarrassed or burdened by her sister's lack of concern, and points out all she is doing...for Him.  Jesus even tells her she is worried or troubled about many things.

Mary, on the other hand, is sitting, resting, at His feet.  She is not flustered, but at peace, just enjoying Jesus' presence.

The Law was given to make people do.  Grace came so we could rest.  

Hebrews 4:9-10 says,

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

Jesus doesn't want us to live in the house of Bethany, a place of misery and depression, a place where we have to do something to receive approval.  He wants us to receive His grace, cease from our works, like Mary, and enter into His rest.

To read more in the series, please join me here, at A Foundation of Grace.

1 comment:

  1. Oh how I love these sisters and how I easily teeter between them. Love this reminder to rest at His feet foday.