Hebrews 4:4 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Hebrews 4:4, NIV: For somewhere he has spoken about the seventh day in these words: 'On the seventh day God rested from all his works.'

Hebrews 4:4, ESV: For he has somewhere spoken of the seventh day in this way: “And God rested on the seventh day from all his works.”

Hebrews 4:4, KJV: For he spake in a certain place of the seventh day on this wise, And God did rest the seventh day from all his works.

Hebrews 4:4, NASB: For He has said somewhere concerning the seventh day: 'AND GOD RESTED ON THE SEVENTH DAY FROM ALL HIS WORKS';

Hebrews 4:4, NLT: We know it is ready because of the place in the Scriptures where it mentions the seventh day: 'On the seventh day God rested from all his work.'

Hebrews 4:4, CSB: For somewhere he has spoken about the seventh day in this way: And on the seventh day God rested from all his works.

What does Hebrews 4:4 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

In verse 4, the writer of Hebrews uses the same tongue-in-cheek expression found in Hebrews 2:6. The reference to "somewhere" does not mean the author does not know or remember. On the contrary, the Scripture cited is assumed to be so familiar to the reader that they will immediately recognize it. In this case, the reference is to Genesis 2:2, where God rests after completing His creation.

This passage is part of a warning not to forfeit our spiritual inheritance through a lack of faith. In order to counter the claim that this inheritance "rest" is no longer available, the writer of Hebrews joins together several key messages of the Old Testament. These will come to a conclusion in verse 10. The overall point is that God's "rest" from creation is ongoing and happened only after He had accomplished His work of creation. The "rest" Israel was promised was denied to them only because they failed to complete the work God gave to them.

In other words, in order to enter into this "rest" inheritance, we need to complete the works assigned to us by God. This helps explain the implication of the term "rest." It implies a completion, and a fulfillment, of what was required. As with other such references in Hebrews, this is not a question of salvation. All who express saving faith in Christ will be eternally secure (John 6:39–40), but only those who "hold fast" in obedience will obtain the full rewards of His kingdom (Revelation 2:26–27).