Summary: #4 in 10 Commandment Series
“THE REST OF THE WEEK!”
INTRO: Of the 10 commandments this is the one taken most lightly by both Christians and non Christians. Against the other commandments like, “Thou shall not kill”, “Thou shall not steal”, and “Do not commit adultery” it seems rather mild and innocuous.
Nothing could be further from the truth however! As the final commandment on tablet #1 dealing with man’s relationship with God it concludes all that we need to know in order to have a full life. ALL the commandments are needed for full life as God intended. God’s rightful place and man’s rightful place cannot be understood in life without this commandment.
This commandment really has two parts to it:
(1. Keep the Sabbath day holy
(2. Six days shall you work.
We cannot find meaning in work without worship, and worship without work has no practical value! It is the combination of both worship and work that creates a full humanity and purpose to life, if our work is for ourselves it has no lasting sense of purpose.
ILLUS: When my daughter Aimee was in nursery school, she’d come home each day with drawings, collages, and other projects. Next to her own name she’d scrawl the name of someone she loved--usually Mommy or Daddy, sometimes baby brother Ben. "I did this for you," she’d proudly say. As I reflect on this, I remember the apostle Paul’s exhortation, "Whatever you do ... do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus" (Col. 3:17). If Aimee could do every school project for me or for her dad, surely I can do my "projects" for my heavenly Father. Now I often ask myself, Have I written my Lord’s name on all I’ve have done today? -- Laura DuVall Bush, New Britain, CT, Today’s Christian Woman, "Heart to Heart."
We cannot experience work as a joyous thing without realizing that our work is being done for something greater than ourselves, and worship without work gives no expression of God’s power in our lives to those of this world.
PROP. SENT: The Bible teaches us that to experience the fullness of our humanity we must both consistently worship God and work. Worship fits us to work. We must honor both parts of this commandment to know God’s best in life.
I. MAN – THE WORSHIPPER Ex. 20:8,10-11
A. Relationship 20:8
1. The first part of this commandment deals with worship before work.
a. The Sabbath was God’s final day of creation, but it was man’s first day of existence .. so man begins his journey with worship before work!
b. Worship makes a man fit to be a worker.
2. Without worship our work has no lasting value, it is only temporal.
a. Certainly nothing man can do as work has any eternal significance to it if it is not done out of a relationship with an eternal God.
3. Why is all this true?
a. Man is a spiritual being, and if what he does has not come from a spiritual perspective it has little value to it.
b. Worship frames everything in our lives by giving significance to everything beyond a materialistic framework.
4. God desired fellowship with Adam before sending Adam into the garden to work it.
ILLUS: I have asked three close friends to monitor me and tell me when I am allowing busyness to crowd out fellowship with God. -- C. John "Jack" Miller in Leadership, Vol. 10, no. 4
5. The purpose of this commandment was to prevent man who worked most of the week from losing the spiritual dynamic to his life and thus the purpose to his work and life.
a. Failure to worship will have an impact of the satisfaction of our work!
b. Worship renews our spirit which is what energizes our body!
ILLUS: Worship renews the spirit as sleep renews the body. Richard Clarke Cabot (1868-1939)
B. Rest 20:10-11
1. Worship enables us to “rest” before God.
a. This isn’t primarily a physical rest as much as it is a spiritual rest!
(1. It is a resting from saving ourselves!
(2. It is resting in God’s love and cleansing power.
b. However, the spiritual rest can have profound impact on our physical being!
ILLUS: A study was made at Harvard University of the effect of meditation on older people. They discovered that meditation lowered blood pressure, improved mental function, and extended the life span. While we may not all agree on transcendental meditation, Christians have long believed that meditation in worship made life deeper if not longer, and richer, and fuller. -- Robert C. Shannon, 1000 Windows, (Cincinnati, Ohio: Standard Publishing Company, 1997).
2. Too often we fail to understand the significance of worship, so many see it as unimportant since we do so many of the same things over and over in the same way when we worship.