Matthew 11:28-30, “28 Come to Me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”
As we looked at previously, Christ desires that His creation comes to Him. Here He further defines those who should come to Him, because in fact not all do come to Christ and there is surely a reason for that. He states, “Come to Me, all who labor and are heavy laden…” Who are those He was speaking of that are laboring and heavy laden? Is it those with abundance of worldly problems? Is it those who are tired in this life? Perhaps it is those who have such burdens upon them that they literally feel weighed down by such. I have heard all of these and more as a reason why Christ calls us to come. However, if this is truly the case, then one would surmise that the Donald Trumps and Bill Gates of the world would not need to come. There are those in this life that are not experiencing worldly labor, and many who don’t feel heavy laden. To these, Jesus said it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter into the Kingdom of Heaven. The Reformation Study Bible shares, “How difficult it will be for those who have wealth. The difficulty is not because riches in themselves are evil and disqualify those who possess them, but because the rich are tempted to depend upon their riches and may be unable to admit their need of God“.
Those who labor and are heavy laden are those that see their spiritual bankruptcy illuminated to them by the Lord. These people have labored to keep the Law of God and are heavy laden under its weighty demands. This is why Christ calls such persons to Himself and then says, “Take my yoke upon you and learn of me...” He doesn’t take them back to the Law they already know their guilty of, and also in addition, and perhaps compounds the problem is that the oral traditions of the scribes and Pharisees went far beyond the demands of God and became a heavy burden on the people.
“When the law was understood as a way of salvation, it became a “yoke of slavery” (Galatians 5:1). By contrast, the yoke of Jesus, while demanding, is “easy” because it is from One who is “gentle and lowly in heart” and can provide true rest for the soul (The Reformation Study Bible).” Coming to Christ is therefore refreshing, because one can then rest in the only One who has ever fully, and completely kept the Law along with all of its demands. The realization that Christ has fulfilled the Law, and paid the price for sin makes for a light burden, because Christ becomes, and is the burden bearer. This is what happened to the woman at the well (John 4), the woman caught in adultery (John 8), the publican (Luke 18), Nicodemus (John 3), and the disciples of Christ. He is the only road and door to the Father (John 14:21), and the Father has extended His kindness toward us “…in that while we were yet sinners [Lawbreakers] Christ died for us.”
Application: Acts 3:19-20, “20 Repent therefore, and turn back, that your sins may be blotted out, 20 that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord, and that he may send the Christ appointed for you, Jesus.”
Until the nets are filled…
Soulfishing Ministries Evangelist<>