His Yoke

May 10, 2012

Matthew 11:28-30
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”

His Yoke

A yoke referred to the device which bound you or enslaved you together with another for the purpose of pulling a weight or burden.  It could also mean a pair of scales.  Yoked under the law of the Pharisees the burden of righteousness was very great and difficult to keep.  It resulted in condemnation and failure to live up to the standards of God imposed upon them by religious men.  The law yoked us to sin and death.  It exposed our sin, but didn’t empower us to overcome it, except in the strength of our own flesh.  Romans 5:20-21 says, “The law was added so that the trespass might increase. But where sin increased, grace increased all the more, so that, just as sin reigned in death, so also grace might reign through righteousness to bring eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.”
No wonder one would become to burdened, wearied and condemned trying to keep all the aspects of the law to be righteous.  Isn’t interesting that the law was added so that the trespass might increase.  The law simply magnified our sin and burden before us.  Even today many of us as believers are trying to live under various aspects of the law, thinking that by keeping it we will better please God and find His favor.  What we don’t have a revelation of is that when we are truly “in Christ” all of the law is fulfilled “in Him”.  That’s why Jesus encourages people to unhitch their plow from the law and hitch it to become yoked with and in Him.  Jesus did all of the work of not only fulfilling the law, but taking upon Himself all the consequences of the law for all who would believe in Him by faith.
When we were weighed in the scales or the yoke of the law we were always found wanting.  We never measured up.  When we are weighed on the scales with Christ then all of the righteousness of the law is fulfilled in Him and because we are yoked with Him, His righteousness is imputed or credited unto us by faith.  Romans 4:23-25 says, “The words “it was credited to him” were written not for him alone, but also for us, to whom God will credit righteousness—for us who believe in him who raised Jesus our Lord from the dead. He was delivered over to death for our sins and was raised to life for our justification.”  We may remember the adage that justification is, “Just as if I had never did it.”
Wow, no wonder the yoke of Christ is so much lighter.  It still represents a joining together with and a bond of commitment, but now it is not our efforts to accomplish what He has already done, but to simply enter into His rest and live out of the righteousness that He is in us.  No longer  in my strength, but in His.  My life, yoked to Him, means that He leads the team in His strength and I follow, just sharing the load, but I follow in His strength and not my own.  In Jesus, we don’t find that spirit of oppressiveness, condemnation and heaviness.  We find that under His yoke we have communion with His person and in His love.  We find encouragement, strength, hope and confidence.  We find that because, ‘He that began a good work in us is able to complete it unto the day of salvation’.  He is able to do in us, what we could never accomplish in our efforts and abilities.  It doesn’t remove all responsibility from us, but it does draw upon the strength of the One who enables us to live mightily in Him.  Our responsibility is to eat of His flesh and drink of His blood; to partake of the communion that brings us into oneness and unity with His person.  In that identity our yoke becomes one. We live out of the power of Christ in us to fulfill the will of the Father.  We labor no more as servants and slaves, but we are partakers and sharers in the household of faith as sons.  It is no longer our obligation to do God’s will, it is our privilege and delight.  Our rest is totally in Him.  We don’t get anxious or stressed, “but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. (Philippians 4:6).”
What a privilege to be yoked to the one whose yoke is easy, whose burden is light
and who gives rest to our souls.  Aren’t we glad that we are so yoked with Jesus?


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