Remember the Sabbath

This is the fourth commandment The first four commandments deal with our relationship to God while the remaining commandments deal with interpersonal relationships on earth.

This commandment is in two parts: remember the Sabbath; keep it holy. Both parts of the commandment are imperatives. They have an understood subject: you. In a grammarian’s book, it would read (you) remember the Sabbath; (you) keep it holy. Both imperatives seem difficult for the general population to follow.

There have been times when I have been guilty of apologetically saying, “I won’t be participating because the event falls on a Sunday.” When I turned down attending a political event that started at noon on a Sunday the event planner haughtily replied that if these political rallies were not held the future of Sunday worship is in jeopardy. The event planner tried to back me into a corner. It didn’t work. A political event is not nearly as important as setting aside time to spend in quiet reflection on my Savior and in support of brothers and sisters in Christ. How could I ever justify attending a rowdy event and say that I was keeping a day set apart for worship holy?

In my long working career, there were times when I had to take my turn at Sunday work, but I usually was able to trade or maneuver hours so that I did not have to miss both morning and evening services, sometimes even worked in choir practice. What about other days for reflection? That is possible too. Some jobs require work on all seven days of the week; for instance, hospitals are open every day of the week. So, when I worked at a hospital during my college years, I made it a personal goal to take additional time in Bible study another time during the week. When we do that, it makes the time set apart a holy time.

It is a mystery to me that when I take time for God, the rest of the day takes care of itself. Everything gets done that has to be done by day’s end. God blesses the remembering, and the keeping that time set aside holy.

In a culture where “me” is all important, it becomes even more necessary to practice the Fourth Commandment. In addition to that one day of quiet, reflective rest, let’s remember to also keep a portion of every day to practice some holy time with our Savior. He longs for our conversations as He speaks through His Word and we respond with pleasure to be in His company.

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