Matthew 11:27 “All things have been handed over to me by my Father, and no one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and anyone to whom the Son chooses to reveal him. 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.”
Authority + Gentleness … A Gentle Authority! Can you imagine? Remember verse 27! All authority has been given to Jesus by the Father! All authority! And what does Jesus do with this authority? He smothers it in gentleness! He redeems a cold, harsh, and stubborn social, religious, and political authority by recreating it in … gentleness. It’s beautiful! Is it not?
Jesus invites us to a life connected with God, and in that connection our burdens are made light. Our burdens are not removed entirely, but they are made so much lighter because God is invited into our lives and God helps us bear them. The yoke is not the burden! Remember this very important truth! The yoke is not the burden! The yoke is a means of bearing our daily burdens. One writer, whose name and work escape me, said it like this: “The burden of a life alienated from God in this fallen world is indeed heavy and difficult to bear, but the grace of God is given when we are yoked to Jesus and share His burden to love and care for others.” This is Gospel.
We have been invited to join our life to God and find rest from burdens and baggage in this very Gospel.
There are people reading this who have accepted Christ’s invitation. You have taken upon yourselves Christ’s yoke; you have placed yourselves at the feet of Christ to learn from him; you have found rest for your souls in his yoke. Praise God!
It is very wise to take regular inventory of our spiritual lives. Sometimes we forget; sometimes we wander off track; sometimes we have to repent and recommit our lives. Sometimes …
When we wander away from God and take off Christ’s yoke we begin to think and live like we are doing it all on our own, by our own power, but we are not. We can try to fake it, but deep within each of us there lives a cry for assistance from a source that is bigger and greater than ourselves. We need God to help us bear our burdens. Sometimes, when life gets really hard, a cry escapes us. We cry out for God. God please, please help! If we haven’t cried out for God yet, we will. Life piles burden upon burden onto our backs and sooner or later our own strength gives out and we cry out for assistance. We cry out for God. If you need to cry out to God, then don’t let your pride stop you. Cry … Jesus is authoritatively gentle and more than willing to put his definitive yoke upon you.