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Top 10 #4 Take a Break: the Sabbath

Topics:   sabbath    rest    faith    commandments   

Posted by Brad Quiring on February 10, 2015

God set up a day to remember Him, to rest and ultimately to demonstrate the true destiny of those who believe in Jesus Christ and commanded us to “take a break!” This day is called “The Sabbath”.

What is the Sabbath?
1. Part of Creation
Thus the heavens and the earth were completed in all their vast array.
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. 3 Then God blessed the seventh day and made it holy, because on it he rested from all the work of creating that he had done.
2. Physical rest for everyone and everything
Deuteronomy5:14 - but the seventh day is a sabbath to the Lord your God. On it you shall not do any work, neither you, nor your son or daughter, nor your male or female servant, nor your ox, your donkey or any of your animals, nor any foreigner residing in your towns, so that your male and female servants may rest, as you do.

Leviticus26:6 - But in the seventh year the land is to have a year of Sabbath rest, a sabbath to the Lord. Do not sow your fields or prune your vineyards

  • We cannot go 7 days a week all year
  • The land needs a break or it becomes unproductive
  • Hired workers were to be given a day to rest so they could have some enjoyment and recover physically and mentally.

3. Expression of Faith in God
Deuteronomy5:15 15 Remember that you were slaves in Egypt and that the Lord your God brought you out of there with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm. Therefore the Lord your God has commanded you to observe the Sabbath day
  • Faith in God’s provision and salvation
  • Work 6 days and rest on one day. Trust God to give you what you need on that day you don’t work
  • Faith demonstrated through obedience to God’s commands and in response to his care.

4. Sign of a Covenant with God
Exodus 31:12, 13 - 12 Then the Lord said to Moses, 13 “Say to the Israelites, ‘You must observe my Sabbaths. This will be a sign between me and you for the generations to come, so you may know that I am the Lord, who makes you holy.
  • Sign they were different from those around them, everyone worked 7 days a week all year long, not God’s people
  • Reveals that God is the Lord and makes people holy
  • Showed God cared, does not want people to literally work themselves to death

5. Sign of Jesus Christ

Hebrews3:10 – 14 - That is why I was angry with that generation; I said, ‘Their hearts are always going astray,
and they have not known my ways.’
11 So I declared on oath in my anger,
‘They shall never enter my rest.’ ”
Therefore we must bring our spending and expectations into line.

We must find success in a relationship with God and others, rather than in things, titles and money.

12 See to it, brothers and sisters, that none of you has a sinful, unbelieving heart that turns away from the living God. 13 But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called “Today,” so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness. 14 We have come to share in Christ, if indeed we hold our original conviction firmly to the very end.
  • God said those who deliberately disobey God and do not believe in Him will not enter his “rest”
  • We have come to share in Christ – a relationship based on our faith in Him
  • Through that faith in Christ we enter God’s rest

What is God’s “Rest”? Our Salvation through faith in Jesus Christ. The idea of the “Sabbath” was to rest from our work and trust in God in order to be saved by God.
8 For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— 9 not by works, so that no one can boast.
  • Grace - free, undeserved blessing
  • Saved – from God’s wrath and the consequences of our sins
  • Faith – our belief and trust in Jesus Christ alone
  • NOT FROM OURSELVES – we don’t do it, earn it or produce it
  • GIFT of God – Given to us without requirement of repayment
  • NOT BY WORKS – not what we do or pay, because we cannot

In Mark 2:27 Jesus said the Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath. We respond to God by responding to the Sabbath, we don’t try and put the Sabbath into our own terms.

1. Take a Physical Rest
The physical fulfillment of the Sabbath was there from the very beginning and applies to life today. We need a break. We must rest physically, mentally and emotionally. God gave us time and our bodies. We are to manage our time and bodies in a way that honours God and reflects how good and caring he is.
2. Do not Worry

Jesus addressed this directly in Matthew 6 – we are not to worry about and chase things. God knows our needs and provides for every one of them. If we think we have to work 70 hours a week to just make ends meet or worse yet, trying to get ahead and have security and a sense of success this is called pride.

3. Live your faith in God

The Sabbath for Israel was a sign to everyone else they belonged to God. The sign and seal for us as Christians is the Holy Spirit in us and working through us.

Therefore, show your covenant with God by trusting him and resting. Show your covenant with God by taking a break from everything and being together with others who love God and have faith in Jesus Christ

We must believe in Jesus alone for salvation and forgiveness of sin. We must believe that Jesus died for your sins and that he rose again from the dead. It is not obtained or earned by reading your Bible, by praying, by being religious or helping the poor.

Therefore: STOP WORKING FOR SALVATION
Sources:
  • The Bible, New International Version
  • Stuart Briscoe, Playing by the Rules, pp. 67, 68
  • Bill Hybels, Laws that Liberate, pp. 45-55