All ye that labor, Come (and live)

On the first Monday of September, annually, America celebrates Labor Day, in commemoration of the American Labor movement, honoring the workers who have contributed to the strength, prosperity and well-being of the country. On this day, both private and public sector offices are closed to give rest to the working people.

The pursuit of rest by man can be dated back to the time of his fall into perdition, in the garden of Eden, for it was only after his fall that he had to labor, to have the cursed ground produce its yield. The only remedy for this tireless pursuit was for the curse to be lifted. When Jesus himself became accursed and willingly laid down his life and died on the cross, the power of the curse of death was lifted from man, with his resurrection. So only in Jesus can one find true rest – rest from their weariness; rest for their souls.

The lyrics of the first stanza of Chris Rice’s song, “Come to Jesus” is as follows: Weak and wounded sinner. Lost and left to die
O, raise your head, for love is passing by. Come to Jesus; Come to Jesus. Come to Jesus and live! This is substantiated Biblically for Jesus said, “Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28). In other words, “Come to Jesus and find rest for your souls” i.e., Come to Jesus and find life – eternal life.

Points to ponder:
Are you laboring to find rest? Are you weak and heavy laden without any rest? Are you pursuing rest from the weariness in your life. If so, come to Jesus and live.

Matthew 11:28 (KJV)
28 Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.

To till (toil) or not to till (toil)

Genesis 2:5, states that “there was not a man to till the ground” yet all the flora grew. This implies that God’s creation was designed to grow, irrespective of man’s work/action, for every herb of the field, that was given to man to eat (Genesis 3:18) grew, until man disobeyed and brought a curse on the ground and the need to till the ground and toil (sweat) for it to bear fruit/yield (Genesis 3:19).

In order to reverse this mishap, Jesus had to come and toil (work) for our Salvation (as creation itself groaned in sin and in error pinned (Romans 8:22)). He finished the work (John 19:30). The ground yielded thorns and thistles as a result of man’s disobedience (Genesis 3:18). A crown of thorns was placed on Jesus’ head as a result of his obedience (Philippians 2:8) and by being pierced, Jesus annulled the curse on mankind. Now, anyone who abides [is planted/rooted] in Jesus Christ, shall bring forth much fruit (John 15:5), by God’s doing, for he gives the increase (1 Corinthians 3:7), and without him, we can do nothing (John 15:5).

Points to ponder:
Without Jesus, we need to till and toil. In Jesus, we need not till and toil.
He said, “Come unto me, all of you, who till (labor) and are heavy laden (toil) and I will give you rest.” (Matthew 11:28)
Do you need to till (toil) or not to till (toil)? In other words, Are you without Christ or are you in Christ Jesus?

Genesis 2:5 (KJV)
And every plant of the field before it was in the earth, and every herb of the field before it grew: for the LORD God had not caused it to rain upon the earth, and there was not a man to till the ground.

Matthew 11:28 (KJV)
28 Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.