Summary: Does Commandment #4 given by God to the Hebrews of old apply to Christians today?
We continue our worship by listening carefully to what God says. Open your bibles to the Book of Exodus Chapter 20… We continue to learn from the 10 Commandments! Read along with me Exodus 20:1-11……
We studied the first 3 Commandments last week:
You shall have no other gods before me.
You shall not make for yourself an idol to bow down to and worship.
You shall not misuse the name of the Lord your God.
This morning in preparation for Communion, let us note the 4th Commandment.
Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy. What does this mean to the Israelites of old and for us today?
First of all, let us note God reminded the Israelites His work of Creation as described in Genesis 1.
v11: God created everything in 6 days and on the 7th day He rested; God blessed that Sabbath Day of rest and made it holy!
As a foundation for our learning, let’s answer 2 basic questions:
1. Does God really need days to create something??
2. Does God really need rest??
If God is really who He states He is, God could have created everything in an instant and God does not need rest! An example of this is when God said let there be light and there was light! And Isaiah 40:28 tell us that God does not go weary or faint.
Why then did God specified 6 days in creating everything and made the 7th day a special day?
God noted the days of creation for reference to people which culminates to a day of rest, the Sabbath day! Later we will read that Jesus said, “The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath.”
On a side note: Isn’t it interesting that our planet and solar system has a clock the way God stated it!! Could Moses who wrote Genesis actually figured out how the solar system worked and then he put it in writing? Yes, Moses was educated in Egypt who had astronomers; but the accuracy of Genesis 1 can only be written by the One over the universe! Only God who created everything and knows everything was the One who told Moses what to write!
And so, God commands His people the Israelites to rest on the 7th day as He ceased and completed the work of Creation on that 7th day! We can read in Genesis 2:2 - By the seventh day God had finished the work he had been doing; so on the seventh day he rested from all his work; rested actually means God ceased from His work.
And we read in Exodus 20, v9-10: What the Israelites of old were to do…..
Does this Sabbath Day apply to us today? The answer of course is in the New Testament through Jesus Christ!
What does our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ say about the Sabbath? Turn with me to the Gospel of Mark 2:23-28….
Jesus Christ is the Lord of the Sabbath! i.e. Jesus Christ is above the Sabbath! If we are Christians, our focus need to be on Jesus Christ the Lord and Savior, not a day of the week!
There are 2 other passages which can help us. Colossians 2:16-17….
Therefore, do not let anyone judge you by what you eat or drink, or with regard to a religious festival, a New Moon celebration or a Sabbath day. These are a shadow of the things that were to come; the reality, however, is found in Christ.
And in Hebrews 3-4, Hebrews are called to “enter in” to the Sabbath rest provided by Christ.
And so, how are we to handle the Sabbath today? If Jesus Christ is the Lord of the Sabbath and people enter in to the Sabbath only through Christ, everything is to be done in Christ!
Jesus Christ is always our rest, our Sabbath….
We gather to worship Jesus Christ the Lord of the Sabbath on a day of the week; but again, public worship gathering can be any day of the week!
We are to rest (our Sabbath) in Jesus Christ daily (belief, worship, live)! And Jesus Christ also provides for us rest for eternity with Him! We will have an eternal Sabbath in heaven with Jesus Christ!
And so, Commandment #4 still applies to Christians today but relating rest always with Jesus Christ who is with us every day not just once a week!
Let us note that there is a Christian sect called the 7th Day Adventists who follows the Sabbath Day on a Saturday like the Hebrews of old. Here’s my question: if they are not supposed to do any work on Saturday, how do they get to church? Wouldn’t driving or walking be considered work?
The proper way to look at the Sabbath is as described in the New Testament through Jesus Christ calling for “resting” on Jesus Christ everyday not just one day a week!
How is our daily “resting” on Jesus Christ? Let’s focus on a Sabbath (total dependence) with Jesus Christ everyday!