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Text for the Week
“Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work: But the seventh day is the sabbath of the LORD thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates: For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the LORD blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it.” Exodus 20:8-11
The fourth commandment is the handmaid of worship and of the Christian’s walk with God. When we keep the Lord’s day holy we are more able to keep all the other commandments too. Sabbath breakers are poor worshippers and make an idol of their own pleasures.
This week we looked at the question: How to pray over the 4th commandment? Here are a few pointers.
- Pray that it will be a personal commitment between your soul and the Lord.
“Speak thou also unto the children of Israel, saying, Verily my sabbaths ye shall keep: for it is a sign between me and you throughout your generations; that ye may know that I am the LORD that doth sanctify you. Exo_31:13
Pray that it will be a part of our testimony before the ungodly. Nehemiah drove the ungodly traders away from the wall of the city who wanted to trade on the Sabbath Day. He shut the gates and encouraged God’s people to hallow God’s day by keeping to their spiritual exercises. (Neh. 13:15-22).
- Pray that it will be a help to public worship for all in our congregation.
“Ye shall keep my sabbaths, and reverence my sanctuary: I am the LORD” (Lev_19:30).
4. Pray that it will ever be a blessing and not a burden.
“If thou turn away thy foot from the sabbath, from doing thy pleasure on my holy day; and call the sabbath a delight, the holy of the LORD, honourable; and shalt honour him, not doing thine own ways, nor finding thine own pleasure, nor speaking thine own words:
Then shalt thou delight thyself in the LORD; and I will cause thee to ride upon the high places of the earth, and feed thee with the heritage of Jacob thy father: for the mouth of the LORD hath spoken it (Is. 58:13,14).
“For the Son of man is Lord even of the Sabbath day “ Matt. 12:8
To crown all, Christ says that he was Lord of the Sabbath. He had a right to direct the manner of its observance – undoubted proof that He is divine. It is also proof that the Day is the Lord’s and every disciple of Christ should endeavour to strike the balance between privilege and piety – to use God’s day and not abuse it. The Lord’s Day is a gift to be enjoyed to the full so we may show our love to God and declare our discipleship to men.
___Pastor Ian Goligher
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