Today’s Scripture: Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Matthew¬†11:28

Christ is a substitute for everything, but nothing is a substitute for Christ. -H.A. IronsideIf you have ever been to Jerusalem, you know that the old city streets are very narrow and wind in between and around buildings. To this day, some are only passable on foot or by bike or motorbike.

In the time of Christ, wealthy merchants would come to buy and sell goods, but their carts would not fit in the narrow streets. The custom was to fetch a poor peasant and have him carry the load to its destination. Often the pay was cheap and sometimes foreign slaves were forced to work for little or nothing.

So when Jesus said, “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest,” He wasn’t just using a nice metaphor-he literally was speaking to the poor, downtrodden, and forgotten-about people in society.

Imagine a young peasant, shoulders and body sore from a day of lugging about heavy goods. He hears Jesus speak of rest. Rest, not just for the body, but for the soul. Eternal hope in a world of hopelessness.

To the world then and the world now, Jesus’ words are soothing. They echo into the poorest of communities, the most forgotten of nations. To the children who are tossed about in countries beset by war and famine and oppression, they are music to the ears of those the world has left behind.

Take hold today of Jesus’ words and find rest for your soul in a relationship with Him.

Devotional by Dr. James A. Scudder