Tuesday, February 24, 2009

The Fourth Commandment

In our continuing look at the 10 Commandments, here is the 4th Commandment.

Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the LORD your God. In it you shall do no work: you, nor your son, nor your daughter, nor your male servant, nor your female servant, nor your cattle, nor your stranger who is within your gates. For in six days the LORD made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested the seventh day. Therefore the LORD blessed the Sabbath day and hallowed it. (Ex. 20:8-11)

This commandment was greatly distorted by the Pharisees in the time of Christ. (Matt. 12:1-8; Mark 2:23-28) But our question is what is the Sabbath and how do we keep it holy?

If you read the verse, Sabbath is a day of rest. Today, we think of Sabbath as the day we go to church. While God does want us to worship Him, he did not set aside one day for that. We are to worship God everyday. God specifically states that Sabbath is a day of rest.

The Sabbath day is a covenant between God and the Israelites. (Ex.31:12-17). This was a day set aside for them to remember that God was their creator and He rested on the Sabbath. By not doing any work on the Sabbath, they were leaning on God to provide for them. In the New Testament, Christ instituted the New Covenant us and that is how we have communion. (1 Cor. 11:23-26)

It is interesting to note that all of the other 9 commandments are reiterated in the New Testament but this one is not. Christ is the Sabbath for us now. (Matthew 12:8, Co. 2:16-17).

Having said all this, I need to clarify myself. I am not saying don't go to church. We need the fellowship of other Christians for encouragement, and to encourage. The apostles along with our Lord observed the Sabbath in this way.(Luke 4:16; Acts 13:14, 42, 44; 16:13; 17:2; 18:4; Hebrews 4:4, 9) What I am saying is don't get bogged down in what man has taught in regards to the Sabbath. God told us to "Remember" because he knew we would forget to observe this day.

We all work too much, myself included. We work for what we want and what we need. We tend to forget God in all the hustle and bustle of our lives. That is not what God intended. God has promised to provide us with what we need. I am constantly having to tell myself those very words. So we all need to look at our lives. How much are we working for what we need versus what we want? While it is true that some of us have made poor choices concerning our finances, do we really need to work 7 days a week or all that overtime? What or who is suffering in your life because of this?

So, your homework for today is: really reflect on how you observe this commandment. Are you resting in Christ? Are you trusting Him to meet your needs? Are you sacrificing your marriage, family, health for a few more dollars? Are you willing to live with this choice forever? This is a hard one for me. I feel the need to work more since my husband does not have regular employment now with a regular payday. This decision is starting to affect my sleep, eating habits, and general outlook on life. I like many of you, have some real soul searching to do over this one.


Post a Comment

Template by:
Free Blog Templates