The number seven is God’s number of perfection and completeness and throughout the bible we find some fantastic answers for mankind as it relates to this number. First of all in the book of Genesis one we find that God created the heavens and the earth in six days and on the seventh day he rested. God did not rest from his labor because he was tired, but because he was finished. The first principle that we can see from this number is that when something is truly finished in our life , we rest about it. If a person moves on to another relationship, career, and there is unfinished issues, they will never rest in the new endeavor because the old issues from the first endeavor will continue to rise to the surface.
Ecclesiastes chapter 3 says that to everything there is a time and a season. God moves in times and seasons and if a person moves ahead of him or lags behind him there will be no rest. Peter in the Garden of Gethsemene could not rest because things were not complete in his life. First of all his inflated ego had to be put in check by Jesus because Peter told Jesus he would never betray him when in fact Jesus said he was going to deny him (Luke 22:31-34). Second Peter could not rest because he followed the Lord afar off (Luke 22:54)
Peter would not be complete and at rest until he could trust the words of Jesus and not lean on his own understanding.
The same principle applies to us today and to be complete and at rest is to be completely at rest that can only come as we obey Proverbs 3:5 which says to trust in the Lord with all thine heart and lean not unto your own understanding.
Peter also followed afar off
Following the Lord afar off will soon lead to denial of him. Many people have had a real encounter with the Lord and they can never deny the truth of their experience, but if a person continues to follow the Lord afar off by slacking in the area of bible study, prayer, church attendance etc they can deny the experience itself by continuing to lie about it. A person can become a pathalogical lier and believe their own lies because of not being willing to face the truth. Romans 1:24 says “they change the truth of God into a lie” Peters unwillingness to face the truth…the truth being he was the one to receive the revelation that Jesus was the Christ (Matthew16:16), he was the one who began to walk on the water going to Jesus, yes friend he could not deny the truth of his experience, but he could deny that experience by lying to himself and others. Peter did become complete and at rest again when he repented, the bible says that when Jesus looked at Peter, he ran out and wept bitterly (Luke 22:62). If there is some sin in our life 1john 1:9 says we can confess it and he would be faithful and just to forgive us and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
The Seven sayings of Jesus on the cross
The cross is known for Christ’s finished work and because of that, his death, burial and resurrection was complete. No more need for the blood of animals because he was the perfect spotless lamb. It is also important to examine that Christ’s work was also finished because of the way he displayed character while on the cross. Jesus said if any man will come after me let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. The cross represents our suffering tests and trials. Many people find it hard to display the Lords character (fruits of the spirit Galatians 5:22-23) because of the pain and disappointment that are the result of their suffering, but when a person truly knows that a problem is going to work out for their good according to Romans 8:28, they do like God did after creation…rest ,because it was finished!,and if they may be bearing their cross like Jesus bore his, they can also do like Jesus did and say it is finished! and rest. God rested because it was finished and Jesus rested because it was finished and today we can have peace and rest because it is finished! Some may ask the question how was it that Jesus rested, because he died didn’t he? yes he did, but according to Jesus, death was only sleep because a sleeping person is a resting person. John 11 shows us that when Jesus was on his way back to raise Lazarus up from being 4 days in the grave, he told his disciples our friend Lazarus sleepeth and the Disciples said Lord if he is asleep then he doeth well, but they thought he was talking about physical rest. So Jesus speaks to them plainly and says, Lazarus is dead. Jesus related death with rest because he knew Lazarus was going to get up out of the grave. He also knew he was going to get up on the third day so he related his death with rest.
The seven sayings of Jesus
- Eli Eli lama sabachthani = My God my God why has thou forsaken me? (Matthew 27:46)
- Father forgive them for they know not what they do (Luke 23:34)
- Verily I say unto thee, today shalt thou be with me in paradise (Luke 23:43)
- Father into thy hands I commend my spirit (Luke 23:46)
- Behold thy mother, woman behold thy son (John 19:26-27)
- I thirst (John 19:28)
- It is finished (John 19:30)