Summary: Dave explains that the Sabbath should be kept, and why and how to keep it.
A Call to Rebellion
Wildwind Community Church
April 25, 2008
What is the single thing the people of God could do to show themselves as the people of God in the most profound way possible? What single thing, if we did it, could make the biggest difference in our lives and would require the greatest adjustment in our lifestyles? What is the subject of one of the most ignored of the 10 Commandments?
The answer to all three questions is Sabbath. What single thing could the people of God do to show themselves as the people of God in the most profound way possible? The answer: honor the Sabbath. What single thing, if we did it, could make the biggest difference in our lives and would require the greatest adjustment in our lifestyles? Answer: Honor the Sabbath. What is the subject of one of the most ignored of the 10 Commandments? Answer: Sabbath. (By the way, I believe honor the Sabbath is the second most ignored of the 10 Commandments. Can anybody guess the most commonly disregarded commandment? “Do not take the name of God in vain.” Can you go anywhere without hearing “Oh my God! Oh my God!!” Some of you didn’t even know that’s prohibited in our most basic instructions for how we are to relate to God. If you didn’t know that, that’s not your fault, it’s mine. I’m going to leave it for now, but soon I’ll preach through the 10 commandments and you’ll hear more about that and why it’s such a basic violation between us and God.) Back to the Sabbath. Easily one of the most ignored of the 10 commandments.
Now having said this, let’s get right down to business, shall we? Let me throw something out there for you, then you can freak out about it, then I’ll help you deal with it.
James 2:10-11 (NIV)
10 For whoever keeps the whole law and yet stumbles at just one point is guilty of breaking all of it. 11 For he who said, "Do not commit adultery," also said, "Do not murder." If you do not commit adultery but do commit murder, you have become a lawbreaker.
Now James went easy on us here. C’mon – none of us are going to kill anybody anytime soon. Let’s substitute different laws, shall we? Kyra, can you put my version up there please?
James 2:10-11 (DWP – Dave’s Word to the People)
10 For whoever keeps the whole law and yet stumbles at just one point is guilty of breaking all of it. 11 For he who said, "Do not murder," also said, "Honor the Sabbath, and keep it holy." If you do not murder but also do honor the Sabbath, you have become a lawbreaker.
So let’s face it. We are lawbreakers. We do not observe the 10 Commandments, God’s most basic list of the ways in which we are to behave toward him and toward each other. I may not have ever committed adultery, but I have often not kept the Sabbath. I am a lawbreaker. You may never have committed murder, but if you have not kept the Sabbath, you are a lawbreaker. And you might say, “Dave, that’s so Old Testament. We don’t have to follow the 10 Commandments anymore because Jesus came and died for our sins so that we wouldn’t have to live by rules, but by relationship.”
And that would be true. Before Jesus came, like the rabbi said in the video, the Jews had come up with an elaborate system of rules. They had 613 rules, and most of them had arisen out of a need to further explain the 10 commandments. “Honor the Sabbath? Oh, that means don’t work on the Sabbath? Oh okay. Is it considered work if I make dinner for my family? It is considered work if in making dinner for my family I have to go and draw water from the well? Don’t covet? Okay. BTW, am I coveting if I just look at somebody else’s stuff and think it would be cool to have it, just for a minute? Okay, how about a half minute? How about a second? Yeah? Okay, then I can’t even look at all, right? If I do look sometimes, is it worse to look on the Sabbath? What about adultery? I mean, I know I shouldn’t, but is there a special penalty for committing adultery on the Sabbath? What about committing adultery on the Sabbath after drawing water to make dinner for my family? If one of my sheep falls into a thornbush on the Sabbath, can I pull him out? Is that considered work? Do not bear false witness? That means don’t lie, right? Okay. But what I don’t lie, I just fail to tell the truth? What’s considered lying? Do not have any other gods before Jehova. Does that mean I can’t carve a totem pole and worship it? Yeah? Okay, so does it also rule out worshipping money? Or sex? Or power? Or myself?