A few years back, the Marines used the recruiting slogan, “We’re looking for a few good men.” While the phrase may seem outdated today, it reminds me of Jesus’ invitation of Matthew 11:28-30. He encourages folks to come to Him, but He specifies people with certain characteristics. The invitation is focused on those who are weary, heavy-laden and are willing to learn from Him.
It is not that He doesn’t care about anyone else. In fact, His Father sent Him into this world out of love for everyone (John 3:16). The grace of God is extended to all men (Titus 2:11) but the sad fact is that people who do not feel weary and burdened and humble will show no interest in the grace God is offering.
The gospel is for the weary. There are people who are painfully aware of the mess they have made of their lives. They are tired of trying to handle life’s challenges alone. They are tired of facing the hardships of life without the comfort and support that God is anxious to provide. They are tired of the drama and difficulty that comes from stumbling through life with no divine guidance. Jesus offers rest to the person weary of living in spiritual darkness.
The gospel is for the heavy-laden. Feelings of guilt can be debilitating. There are some who try to eliminate the guilty feelings by denying that sin even exists. But the fact is that God is real and He has revealed His will for us. When we violate His will, we stand condemned before Him and guilt is very real indeed. There is only one path to a clear conscience, and that is to obtain God’s forgiveness. 1 Peter 3:21 says, “Baptism now saves you – not the removal of dirt from the flesh, but an appeal to God for a good conscience – through the resurrection of Jesus Christ.” Jesus offers rest to the person who recognizes their need for God’s forgiveness.
The gospel is for the humble and submissive. The person who responds to Jesus’ invitation recognizes that we have none of the answers of life without Him (John 6:68). God’s divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness through the knowledge of Christ (2 Peter 1:3). Human philosophy and innovations are useless in the spiritual realm. Jesus offers rest to those willing to learn from Him and submit to His authority.
It is not my place to prejudge the hearts of others, but for the weary and burdened and humble, there is hope. If you would like to study the Bible, give me a call. All I can do is point you to the only One who can give you the rest you seek.
Editor’s Note: Opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect the editorial opinion of the Murray Ledger & Times.