Rest for a Restless World

Dr. Steve Viars August 16, 2020
Outline

Psalm 46:1-2 - God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear…

4 reasons to come to Jesus when we are weary and weighed down

I. Because You Can Come to Jesus No Matter How Beaten Down You Are

Matthew 11:25 - At that time Jesus said, I praise You, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that You have hidden these things from the wise and intelligent and have revealed them to infants.

A. Even when you are exhausted from your work

v. 28 – …all who are weary…

kopiao – present active particle

Matthew 11:20 - Then He began to denounce the cities in which most of His miracles were done, because they did not repent.

B. Bring your burdens with you

v. 28 – …heavy laden…

“Heavy-laden translates a perfect passive participle, indicating that at some time in the past a great load was dumped on the wearied person. Whereas weary refers to the internal exhaustion caused by seeking divine truth through human wisdom, heavy-laden suggests the external burdens caused by the futile efforts of works righteousness.” (John MacArthur, Commentary on Matthew, vol. 2, p. 275)

II. Because Jesus Offers Divine Rest

Matthew 11:28 - Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest.

Matthew 11:29 - …you will find rest for your souls.

A. What it is

anapauw – to refresh or revive, as from labor or a long journey

Revelation 3:20 - Behold, I stand at the door and knock; if anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and will dine with him, and he with Me.

B. What it includes

1. Satisfaction in the finished work of Christ

Hebrews 4:10 - For the one who has entered His rest has himself also rested from his works, as God did from His.

2. Ability to wait

Psalm 37:7 - Rest in the Lord and wait patiently for Him; do not fret…

3. Willingness to be thankful

Psalm 116:7 - Return to your rest, O my soul, for the Lord has dealt bountifully with you.

4. A quieted soul

Psalm 131:2 – Surely, I have composed and quieted my soul; like a weaned child rests against his mother, my soul is like a weaned child within me.

Matthew 11:29 - Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me…

A yoke was made of wood, hand-hewn to fit the neck and shoulders of the particular animal that was to wear it in order to prevent chafing. For obvious reasons, the term was widely used in the ancient world as a metaphor for submission. The yoke was part of the harness used to pull a cart, plow, or mill beam and was the means by which the animal’s master kept it under control and guided it in useful work. A student was often spoken of as being under the yoke of his teacher, and an ancient Jewish writing contains the advice: “Put your neck under the yoke and let your soul receive instruction” (John MacArthur, Commentary on Matthew, vol. 2, p. 277).

III. Because of Unique Nature of Jesus’ Yoke

A. It is “His” yoke

B. It is a yoke of humble submission

Matthew 5:3-6 - Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted. Blessed are the gentle, for they shall inherit the earth. Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.

C. It is yoke of faithful discipleship

“learn from me” – manthano - related to mathates/disciple

D. It is a yoke that removes unnecessary burdens

v.30 – …For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.

1. Compared to the weight of legalism

Luke 11:46 - But He said, “Woe to you lawyers as well! For you weigh men down with burdens hard to bear, while you yourselves will not even touch the burdens with one of your fingers.” (cf. Matthew. 23:4)

Ephesians 4:1-3 - Therefore I, the prisoner of the Lord, implore you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling with which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, showing tolerance for one another in love, being diligent to preserve the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.

2. Compared to the weight of sin and pride and rebellion

Proverbs 13:15 - Good understanding produces favor, but the way of the treacherous is hard.

Micah 6:8 - He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?

2 Peter 2:18-19 - For speaking out arrogant words of vanity they entice by fleshly desires, by sensuality, those who barely escape from the ones who live in error, promising them freedom while they themselves are slaves of corruption; for by what a man is overcome, by this he is enslaved.

1 John 5:3 - For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments; and His commandments are not burdensome.

IV. Because of the Delightful Nature of Jesus’ Heart (v.29)

“My dad pointed out to me something that Charles Spurgeon pointed out to him. In the four Gospel accounts given to us in Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John—89 chapters of biblical text —there is only one place where Jesus tells us about his own heart.

We learn much in the four Gospels about Christ’s teaching. We read of his birth, his ministry, and his disciples. We are told of his travels and prayer habits. We find lengthy speeches and repeated objections by his hearers, prompting further teaching. We learn of the way he understood himself to fulfill the whole Old Testament. And we learn in all four accounts of his unjust arrest and shameful death and astonishing resurrection. Consider the thousands of pages that have been written by theologians over the past two thousand years on all these things.

But in only one place—perhaps the most wonderful words ever uttered by human lips—do we hear Jesus himself open up to us his very heart…

In the one place in the Bible where the Son of God pulls back the veil and lets us peer way down into the core of who he is, we are not told that he is ‘austere and demanding in heart.’ We are not told that he is ‘exalted and dignified in heart.’ We are not even told that he is “’oyful and generous in heart.’ Letting Jesus set the terms, his surprising claim is that he is ‘gentle and lowly in heart.’” (Gentle and Lowly, Dane Ortlund, pp. 17-18)

v. 29 – …for I am gentle and humble in heart.

A. Gentle

B. Humble

Philippians 2:8 - Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.

- have you ever received an invitation to an event or destination that you knew would be restful and invigorating?...and part of what made it so delightful was that it came at a time when you were especially exhausted because of everything going on in your life?...

- After Kris and I were married, we moved to Winona Lake where I attended seminary and she worked to put me through…

- we went through that program pretty quickly but decided it would be best to try to earn one more degree before entering the ministry full time so that’s when we headed out to New Jersey so I could attend Westminster Seminary in Philadelphia…

- we knew that was going to be very busy time…I was going to be serving as an assistant pastor at a church, as the administrator of their Christian school, working on a doctorate, and interning at a biblical counseling center in Princeton…

- plus, we were moving to a different part of the country and I’m not sure we were prepared for the cultural change that came along with all of that…

- in the providence of God, he brought along a delightful young couple in that church named Carol and Harry Tanghare…

- looking back on that period of time, I marvel at the way the Lord used Harry and Carol at exactly the time we needed them..

- Carol was a master at hospitality…she had grown up in a pastor’s home…and she loved having young couples in their home…

- those evenings were such a respite from our crazy schedule…and we were always glad to receive one of those invitations…

- Carol and Harry had grown up in Cape May…which in NJ terminology is the shore – most of us would call that the beach…

- but her family owned several vacation rentals…so on the off-season…they would invite us to come and stay a day or two in one of these beautiful Victorian style vacation homes…

- Harry was a great cook…so he would fix these “seafood feasts” from the fresh seafood available there…

- of course he knew all the right places to go and the best dishes to make…it ruined any subsequent seafood experience for me since then because no one can make it like Harry…

- so they would invite a group of us to go…we’d have a big seafood dinner and then sit out on those big patios eating endless ice cream…and laugh until you couldn’t keep your eyes open any longer…

- then you’d sleep like a log with that ocean air coming through the windows…it was incredibly restful…looking back, those invitations were a lifeline for us…

- you know, there is someone else who has issued a very similar invitation…it’s the Lord Jesus Christ…and in these exhausting days in which we live…I’m glad this morning we have the privilege of studying about Rest for a Restless World

- with that in mind, please open your Bible to Matthew chapter 11…

- I hope you’ve enjoyed and been challenged by this series we’ve been doing this summer on Overcoming Worry and Fear

- so many Sundays our pastors have felt like mailmen…where we get to deliver an unexpected check or some other piece of delightful news…

- these passages are so encouraging and helpful…and I know all of us have souls that are very hungry right now…

- and to be one of God’s shepherds…serving under the Great Shepherd the Lord Jesus Christ…saying in essence, look flock, here’s another meadow filled with luscious grass…let’s eat to our fill together…it’s a great pleasure and privilege…

- like last Sunday am -- Psalm 46:1–2 - God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear…

- thank the Lord that it really is possible to overcome fear and worry…

- well, for all kinds of reasons…you may feel about as exhausted as Kris and I did during those days when our schedule was just packed to the gills…

- the good news is – there’s a marvelous invitation waiting…to get a running start, let’s begin in verse 20 of Matthew 11, but we’re heading especially to the last three verses of the chapter.

- Read Matthew 11:20-30

- so we’re talking about Rest for a Restless World…and with the time we have remaining, let’s think about 4 reasons to come to Jesus when we are weary and weighed down.

I. Because You Can Come to Jesus No Matter How Beaten Down You Are

- sometimes men and women make the mistake of believing that they have to clean up their act and then they can come to the Lord…

- perhaps you’ve spoken to a person like that…

- and the problem is, apart from Him it is impossible to clean ourselves up in some meaningful and lasting way that would please Him – that’s why the writer of Hebrews said…without faith, it is impossible to please God…

- so it is those who are most willing to acknowledge our need who are in the best position to find it in Him…

- that is why we read in verse 25 - Matthew 11:25 - At that time Jesus said, I praise You, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that You have hidden these things from the wise and intelligent and have revealed them to infants.

- that’s not to suggest that only unintelligent people can become Christians…this is speaking about people who think they are so wise and intelligent that they wouldn’t admit their level of exhaustion for anything in world…

- have you ever had one of your children say…I’m not tired…I’m not tired…I’m not tired…

- what’s usually going to come next?...either a meltdown…or sometimes they just fall asleep the very next second…then someone has to carry them to bed…

A. Even when you are exhausted from your work

- v. 28 – all who are weary

- kopiao – present active particle which indicates continuous action…

- in a spiritual sense this would be speaking of those who are trying to earn their salvation through their own efforts as if they don’t need a Savior…

- that would fit with the context we read in verse 20…

- Matthew 11:20 - Then He began to denounce the cities in which most of His miracles were done, because they did not repent.

- these were places where Jesus had demonstrated His deity with miraculous signs and then invited them to repent of their self-righteousness – their attempts to earn salvation by their own works…

- self-righteousness is exhausting…because you can never get ahead of the sin you have committed…

- early in our ministry we took a mission trip to Mexico City with Sam and Jamie Hornbrook…

- they took us to the large Catholic Basilica there…which is a massive building with a huge cobblestone courtyard…and there were people that would walk on their knees across that courtyard and then up an expansive staircase in order to do penance for their sins…

- by time they reached the staircase their knees would often be bloodied by the attempts…

- self-righteousness is exhausting…

- yet the people in Chorazin, and Bethsaida, and Capernaum preferred that approach to actually repenting and admitting their needed someone else to pay for their sins…

B. Bring your burdens with you

- v. 28 – heavy laden

- Heavy-laden translates a perfect passive participle, indicating that at some time in the past a great load was dumped on the wearied person. Whereas weary refers to the internal exhaustion caused by seeking divine truth through human wisdom, heavy-laden suggests the external burdens caused by the futile efforts of works righteousness (John MacArthur, Commentary on Matthew, vol. 2, p. 275).

- isn’t it marvelous that we have a Savior who actually invites men and women to come to Him in this condition?

- I wonder how many people might hear this message today who have never trusted Christ as Savior and Lord and would just feel exhausted…

- this particular season that we’re in has brought mankind to an end of our answers and resources…

- the first step is to acknowledge that’s where you are…and to be willing to turn around in repentance and faith and say in essence…I give up, the treadmill of self-righteousness is not getting me anywhere…

- and while this passage is primarily about the decision to trust Christ as Savior and Lord…the issue of finding rest in Jesus is a daily discipline as well…

- self-righteousness can creep up in all sorts of ways…

- one of the big potential ways this fall is the issue of perfectionism…

- so if you’re one of those parents trying to home-school your child during the pandemic…and you see these other moms posting beautiful color-coded lesson plans on Pinterest..and you’re saying, really, I’m such a failure…placing unreasonable standards on yourself can be exhausting…

- or you’re a teacher…and you’re providing in-school education, and on-line instruction, and you’re trying to maintain social distancing, and one of your little boys just shot his mask across the room at one of the little girls and you’re certain the entire class is going to be infected by the end of the week…the words perfectionism and pandemic should only appear closely in the dictionary…

- or you’re trying to work from home…but there’s that frustration some days of not being able to be as productive…

- or you’re cleaning your house and your car and the kid’s toys and the mail with the belief that if you do it just right, you’re guaranteed that no one in your family will get sick…

- and you’re slathering everyone in hand sanitizer and then you see the recent report that over 200 of the hand sanitizers that quickly came on the market didn’t have the right amount of alcohol in them…

- the same is true with some kind of sinful habit…

- worry can be exhausting…so can fear and anxiety…it’s amazing how much energy that cluster of sins requires…

- arguing on social media about whatever has you worked up can be exhausting…

- fighting about politics…or social justice…or the police…or the next stimulus bill…

- so friend, regardless of the reason – here’s the promise – you can come to Christ no matter how beaten down you are…and what is he making available to us?

II. Because Jesus Offers Divine Rest - twice in this short text…

- Matthew 11:28 - Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest.

- Matthew 11:29 - …you will find rest for your souls.

A. What it is

- anapauw – to refresh or revive, as from labor or a long journey

- I love when we have the privilege of listening to the testimonies of people who are being or being added to our church family…

- in a myriad of different ways, this is what they are saying…

- I was running from God in reckless rebellion which was exhausting…

- or I was trying to figure life out in my own strength which was exhausting..

- or, I was caught up in some sinful habit, which was exhausting…

- or I was trying to please God in my own works...which was exhausting…

- but then I responded to His invitation…to admit my sin and place my faith and truth in Christ alone for my salvation…and finally the war was over, and the guilt was gone…and I was at rest with Him…

- we mentioned this verse a couple of weeks ago, but it bears repeating…Revelation 3:20 - Behold, I stand at the door and knock; if anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and will dine with him, and he with Me.

- you could think about this kind of spiritual rest in all sorts of ways…

B. What it includes

1. Satisfaction in the finished work of Christ

- Hebrews 4:10 - For the one who has entered His rest has himself also rested from his works, as God did from His.

- and of course this is a great example of how we always have to compare Scripture with Scripture…because we’re certainly not saying that works don’t matter – that would contradict many passages in the Word of God…

- but we’re talking about the security we have in Christ as a result His finished work on the cross…

- and whatever works follow are done out of love and adoration for Christ and a heartfelt desire to please Him…

- it’s the difference between fearfully working in order to earn something or hang onto something – and joyfully working in response to what has already been secured for you at the cross…

- [repeat verse] - this allows us to take a deep breath…it allows us to slow down…to enjoy our relationship with the Lord…it allows us to rest…

2. Ability to wait

- Psalm 37:7 - Rest in the Lord and wait patiently for Him; do not fret…

- this passage is telling us not to worry about evildoers…but its true of any time we’re just called upon to wait and not worry…[do you have any opportunities to do that right now?]…and, how’s it going?...we can either rest in Christ or we can impatiently worry…

- I wonder how many people around our world right now -- Jesus might be saying these very words to – Come unto me, all you who are weak and heavy laden, and I will give you rest…

3. Willingness to be thankful

- Psalm 116:7 - Return to your rest, O my soul, for the Lord has dealt bountifully with you.

- isn’t it true that ungratefulness makes you tired, annoyed, anxious, stressed…

- whereas thanksgiving is restful…[repeat verse]…

4. A quieted soul

- Psalm 131:2 - Surely I have composed and quieted my soul; like a weaned child rests against his mother, my soul is like a weaned child within me.

- how would you evaluate yourself on this one?...let’s say we could take a long look at your soul and then compare it to different types of children…

- is your soul like a weaned child resting against his mother…or a spoiled brat throwing a temper tantrum?...

- So, how does a person get to this place?...a decision has to be made…the Lord says…

- Matthew 11:29 - Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me…

- I assume the image is clear to most of us, but just in case it’s not…A yoke was made of wood, hand-hewn to fit the neck and shoulders of the particular animal that was to wear it in order to prevent chafing. For obvious reasons, the term was widely used in the ancient world as a metaphor for submission. The yoke was part of the harness used to pull a cart, plow, or mill beam and was the means by which the animal’s master kept it under control and guided it in useful work. A student was often spoken of as being under the yoke of his teacher, and an ancient Jewish writing contains the advice: “Put your neck under the yoke and let your soul receive instruction” (John MacArthur, Commentary on Matthew, vol. 2, p. 277).

- the question every person has to answer is – have you found the yoke designed by God Himself that puts you in the best position to handle the challenges of everyday life?…

- because an animal that tries to work without a yoke will be out of control and ineffective…

- conversely, finding one that is the wrong size or shape will make the task harder not easier…

- this gives us another reason to come to Him when we’re weary and weighed down…

III. Because of Unique Nature of Jesus’ Yoke

A. It is “His” yoke

- It there anything that Jesus has ever designed for you that was not in your best spiritual interest?...

- do you really believe fundamentally that He is good?...

B. It is a yoke of humble submission

- in our pride we want to say – I’m the master of my fate and the captain of my soul…

- has pride ever taken you to a good place?...any time you slipped into the yoke of pride and headed off in that direction – was the end result a straight row in the farm-field of communication and relationships and accomplishments?...

- that’s why Jesus began his public ministry by saying..

- Matthew 5:3–6 - Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted. Blessed are the gentle, for they shall inherit the earth. Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.

- the Lord has certainly humbled us this year, has He not…at least if we’ll allow Him to…

- for example, when the pandemic started, we were being told that the virus could live on paper for days…so when we went back to limited on-site services we said – we won’t be distributing bulletins…

- which is almost heretical right – you can’t have church without a bulletin -- but we stopped using them…

- someone circulated an article the other day that the likelihood of the virus being transferred on a piece of paper is practically zero…who knows?...please don’t send me different article that argues the other side of that issue…

- that’s the point – we can’t even figure out paper products…

- What a great occasion to say – I want to humbly wear the yoke of Someone with far more wisdom and strength than I possess on my own…

C. It is yoke of faithful discipleship

- the phrase “learn from me” – manthano - related to mathates/disciple

- so for example, when Jesus says in the Great Commission – Go therefore and make disciples of all nations – it’s the same word group - mathatizw

- has the Lord taught you some things this year?...Wow…

- some of us might say – we’ve learned more about what it means to truly follow Christ in the last 6 months than most other periods in our Christian lives…

- and I realize some might respond with – don’t say that out loud, or the Lord will decide to send us to summer-school!...that’s the beauty of believing this is Jesus’ yoke…

D. It is a yoke that removes unnecessary burdens

- Don’t you love what verse 30 affirms?…“For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.” (v.30)

- and I realize you might say – “How is that so”?...several possible answers…

1. Compared to the weight of legalism

- But He said, “Woe to you lawyers as well! For you weigh men down with burdens hard to bear, while you yourselves will not even touch the burdens with one of your fingers.” Luke 11:46 (cf. Matthew. 23:4)

- one way I’m hoping this message will impact many in our church family is to conclude – I don’t have to be perfect during this pandemic…I don’t have to be perfect ever…

- and we’re not advocating mediocrity – but can we give ourselves and each other some space to do the best we can during a difficult time?...

- one of the troubling developments in the past several months is the number of churches that are having serious problems right now…

- I don’t know if it’s because emotions are so frayed…or because people haven’t had the opportunity to spend time with one another personally…

- but we’re hearing about, or asking to get involved in mediating situations in other churches where people are elevating their views on masks, or other aspects of the pandemic, or their views on social justice, or their views on the election…to the level of Scripture…

- and then they are insisting that if their brothers and sisters in Christ really loved the Lord as much as they do – or understood the Bible as well as they do – they would embrace their same position to that same degree and articulate it in exactly the same way…

- friends – that’s legalism…and Jesus is nowhere to be found…and it’s exhausting…

- that’s why Paul said -- Ephesians 4:1–3 - Therefore I, the prisoner of the Lord, implore you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling with which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, showing tolerance for one another in love, being diligent to preserve the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.

- friends…that is yoke…no doubt about it, but it is a yoke that is easy and a burden that is light…this is also true…

2. Compared to the weight of sin and pride and rebellion

- a verse that Pastor Goode used to often quote was…

- Proverbs 13:15 - Good understanding produces favor, but the way of the treacherous is hard.

- you’ve heard me say a number of times over the past several weeks that as followers of Jesus Christ, we ought to hate racism and pray/long/work toward justice for all…

- it’s as simple as Micah 6:8 - He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?

- on the other hand – I’m concerned that some Christians have wholeheartedly embraced certain social justice theories that are filled with unbiblical ideas that will actually take people further away from the gospel and their need of a Savior…

- now we’re seeing that in Chicago…where people are going to Michigan Avenue – the so-called Magnificent Mile – many of us have been there over the years…and doing hundreds of thousands of dollars of damage to stores that are already barely hanging on by a thread…

- friend – if the social justice theory you are espousing makes it more likely that someone is going to act sinfully toward God or others…that makes you a false teacher…promoting an ill-fitting and poorly designed yoke…

- and that problem is as old as the church itself – that’s why Peter stopped what he was doing and wrote the letter we call 2 Peter…2 Peter 2:18–19 - For speaking out arrogant words of vanity they entice by fleshly desires, by sensuality, those who barely escape from the ones who live in error, promising them freedom while they themselves are slaves of corruption; for by what a man is overcome, by this he is enslaved.

- Jesus’ yoke is easy and light compared to that…

- and over time, you become convinced – this yoke fits well, and it helps me accomplished what God designed me to accomplish for Him…here’s where you want to get to -- For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments; and His commandments are not burdensome. 1 John 5:3

[if time, talk about Bear/s tandem recumbent bike being right-sized for our trips to Igloo]

- There’s one other point that is central to this passage…

IV. Because of the Delightful Nature of Jesus’ Heart (v.29).

- in his new book Gentle and Lowly, author Dane Ortlund discusses this important passage in great detail…

- My dad pointed out to me something that Charles Spurgeon pointed out to him. In the four Gospel accounts given to us in Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John—89 chapters of biblical text —there is only one place where Jesus tells us about his own heart.

We learn much in the four Gospels about Christ’s teaching. We read of his birth, his ministry, and his disciples. We are told of his travels and prayer habits. We find lengthy speeches and repeated objections by his hearers, prompting further teaching. We learn of the way he understood himself to fulfill the whole Old Testament. And we learn in all four accounts of his unjust arrest and shameful death and astonishing resurrection. Consider the thousands of pages that have been written by theologians over the past two thousand years on all these things.

But in only one place—perhaps the most wonderful words ever uttered by human lips—do we hear Jesus himself open up to us his very heart…

In the one place in the Bible where the Son of God pulls back the veil and lets us peer way down into the core of who he is, we are not told that he is “austere and demanding in heart.” We are not told that he is “exalted and dignified in heart.” We are not even told that he is “joyful and generous in heart.” Letting Jesus set the terms, his surprising claim is that he is “gentle and lowly in heart” (Gentle and Lowly, Dane Ortlund, pp. 17-18)

- one of our FCI classes this fall is going to be based on this book…

- [BTW – this is probably as good a place as any for me to remind us that just because we mention a book, or even recommend a book – that is not a wholesale endorsement – I think that may be part of what is happening in some of these church problems in other places – people don’t have the maturity to interact critically with a book – it’s often like eating chicken – enjoy the meat and spit out the bones]

- But one of the strong reasons for us to find our rest in Christ is because he is – v. 29 - “for I am gentle and humble in heart.”

A. Gentle

- for anyone who might say – well, I know I’ve been trying to find rest in other places…what kind of response would I receive from the Lord if I tried to do a better job of finding my rest in Him?...

- we have the answer right here, don’t we?...it would be a response that was gentle…and also…

B. Humble

- this was the only way Christ would have been willing to die on our behalf…

- remember what Paul told the Philippians?... Philippians 2:8 - Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.

- I mentioned that we’re aware of, or have been asked to become involved in an unusual number of church mediations…

- but on the other hand – we are so thankful for our church family…by God’s grace, we are doing amazingly well…

- and I believe that because – while we certainly far from perfect, it’s because many, many people in our church family have decided that during this pandemic…and any other time…

- we’re going to come unto Jesus, day after day after day – admitting that we are weak and heaven laden…

- we’re going to take his yoke upon us, and learn from Him…

- rejoicing that He is gentle and lowly in heart, and seeking to find our rest in Him…

- believing that His yoke is easy, and His burden is light

Dr. Steve Viars

Roles

Senior Pastor - Faith Church

Director - Faith Legacy Foundation

Bio

B.S.: Pre-Seminary & Bible, Baptist Bible College (Now Clarks Summit University)
M.Div.: Grace Theological Seminary
D.Min.: Biblical Counseling, Westminster Theological Seminary

Dr. Steve Viars has served at Faith Church in Lafayette, IN since 1987. Pastor Viars leads and equips Faith Church as Senior Pastor with a focus on preaching and teaching God’s Word and using his organizational skills in guiding the implementation of the Faith Church mission and vision. He oversees the staff, deacons, and all Faith Church ministries. Dr. Viars serves on the boards of the Association of Certified Biblical Counselors, Biblical Counseling Coalition, Vision of Hope, and the Faith Community Development Corporation. Steve is the author, co-author, or contributor to six books and numerous booklets. He and his wife, Kris, were married in 1982 and have two married daughters, a son, and three grandchildren.

Read Steve Viars’ Journey to Faith for the full account of how the Lord led Pastor Viars to Faith Church.

View Pastor Viars' Salvation Testimony Video