From the previous article, we learnt that the gospel of the rest of God in Christ was preached unto the children of Israel. God’s promise for their rest was not a mere physical place like the land of Canaan but a place in Christ. This was a place of endless life. But this endless life was a promise, rather than a reward. How then did the law begin to promise life to the obedient? (Romans 10:5). Simple answer- the law was to reprove those who had rejected the promise, and to reveal the futility of their efforts.
Isaiah says: “To whom he said, “This is the resting place, let the weary rest”; and, “This is the place of repose”— but they would not listen. So then, the word of the Lord to them will become: Do this, do that, a rule for this, a rule for that; a little here, a little there—so that as they go they will fall backward; they will be injured and snared and captured” (Isaiah 28:12-13).
It should be clear by now. The law was to reprove the hard hearted; those who were slow of heart to believe and enter into God’s rest. The Lord Himself gave a remark about one of Moses’ precepts: “And Jesus answered and said unto them, for the hardness of your heart he wrote you this precept” (Mark 10:5). He however clarified that this was not God’s original design: “But from the beginning of the creation God made them male and female” (Mark 10: 6).