The Francis Asbury Society

FACE TO FACE: Intimate Moments with God 11/23

Posted on | November 23, 2015 | Comments Off on FACE TO FACE: Intimate Moments with God 11/23

Scripture reading: Exodus 20:8–11

The Forgotten Commandment

Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. (Exodus 20:8)

Of all the conflicts in which I have ever participated, one of the most heated involved playing sports on Sunday. I was a board member of a Christian school, and a motion was on the table that would allow our girls volleyball team to play in a league tournament game on Sunday. Because our teams had never been very good, we had never before made it to postseason com- petition. So up until this moment the question had been moot. But this year, our girls were good. Really good! But to win the tournament they would have to compete on the Lord’s Day. Since we had a policy forbidding school sporting events on Sunday, the board would have to make an exception. Overnight, our board room became a war zone as parents and leaders took sides arguing passionately for or against the motion. It was ugly. After fierce debate, a wimpish compromise solution was reached that satisfied no one. This story illustrates how deeply we feel about the Lord’s Day even when we don’t know we feel deeply about it.

Though the Bible seldom gives a straight answer to the type of question the school board was asking, it does reveal at least seven things the Lord wants you to know about the Sabbath.

 

  1. It is a gift. We do wrong to think of Sabbath observance as a duty and an God gave it to us to be a delightful pause in our busy lives. The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath (Mark 2:27).
    1. It is a sign. God explained to Moses that the Sabbath was a sign between me and you (Exodus 31:13). A sign is an outward symbol of an inward reality. The Sabbath is a perpetual reminder of the covenant of grace God has established with his
    2. It is an attitude. Rest and worship are the important ingredients of Sab- bath observance, not following rules and What matters is our mindset, our attitude of heart. If you call the Sabbath a delight . . . then you will find your joy in the Lord (Isaiah 58:13–14).
    3. It is an invitation. God rested on the seventh day from his work (Genesis 2:2–3) and he invites us to imitate Six days of work each week is enough! So take one day a week to pause and rest: go on a walk, fly a kite, play a game, take a nap, read a book, etc.
    4. It is an opportunity. The Sabbath is holy, a day set apart to be different from the other six. Take advantage of the break in your schedule to enrich your soul. Worship, reflect, refocus, read your Bible, pray, sing praise, etc.
    5. It teaches trust. If you can’t pay the bills, plow the fields, and do your school work in six days, then something is tragically out of balance in your life. When you cease working, you are learning to trust God. His provision begins where your efforts end.
    6. It helps us to better manage all our time. Pharisees believe that if they give one day to God, they can use the other six days any way they choose. Not so! Every day belongs to God. Keeping the Sabbath helps you to sanctify all your time.

 

Do you keep the Lord’s Day holy? Make a decision today to sanctify your time and experience the blessings that come from a weekly Sabbath.

 

Sabbath-keeping is more art than science. It is more poetry than arithmetic . . . It is like painting: done by numbers, it comes off stiff and blotchy.  But done with discipline and imagination and passion, it both captures and enhances life.  —Mark Buchanan

 

 

point to ponder Do you obey God’s command to keep the Sabbath? Why or why not?

 

prayer focus  For a rediscovery—not only of the importance of the Sab- bath—but also for the making of time to rest.

 

 

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