February 26, 2018
Exodus 20:1-11 … “Remember the sabbath day, and keep it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work. But the seventh day is a sabbath to the Lord your God; you shall not do any work…” vss. 8-10
The commandment on the sabbath doesn’t seem as significant as some of the others. We can understand the restriction on graven images as idolatry was always a temptation for God’s people. And it seems obvious that there should be some restrictions on murder, stealing, adultery and slander. We know those things are bad! But what’s the big deal about setting aside a day to rest? The purpose just isn’t readily apparent, and yet, keeping the sabbath became one of the defining characteristics of Jewish spirituality. Scribes and rabbis spent centuries arguing about which activities were allowed on the sabbath and which were not. This was important for them—keeping the sabbath was a public affirmation of faith and indicated whether a person was a true believer. For many people, those ideas seem quaint and unwieldy, and many Christians have pretty much abandoned the notion that one day is any holier than another. As a result, a lot of people are missing out on the rhythm that a day of rest can bring to a week. They don’t seem to realize that taking time off is essential for our souls. To put it bluntly, that day of rest prescribed in the commandments is the pause that refreshes. It revitalizes our lives!
Thought for the Day: How do I keep the sabbath holy?