Part 4 - The Ten Commandments
Col 2.16-17

Hello and Welcome to Our Church Without Walls. I’m preaching a series of messages called THE TEN COMMANDMENTS
Today’s text is found in: Exodus 20:3-17. This is part 4.

Okay. So now that the Jews were free from their captivity, they were experiencing a whole new freedom. With this freedom, came a sense of loss...a loss of direction and purpose. God had given Moses the Ten Commandments to give them the direction they needed and reminded them of their purpose. Their purpose was to live for God and give Him glory and praise. However, while in captivity (as already mentioned in previous devotions), the Jews were either limited in their permissive religious activity or took upon themselves the practice of false religions. This Fourth Commandment was the final commandment that pointed their worship toward God. The other six commandments designated their behavior toward mankind.

The Fourth Commandment concerns the time of worship. God is to be honored and worshipped daily, in all that we do, but especially on the Sabbath (for the Jews, during this time). It says that we are to, “Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord your God. In it you shall do no work . . .” (Exodus 20:8, 9). The term “Sabbath” is derived from “to rest or cease from work”. The Sabbath day was a day set apart for the worship of God. Worship, praise, honor and glory went to God on this day. It was to remind us that it was God who created the world and all that is in it. By the way, this distinguished the Jews from all other religions. (The other religions worshipped gods they made with their own hands and were powerless. The Jews worshipped God who created the world!)

God instituted six days of work and on the seventh day rested. It was our Holy God who gave us this instruction not to work on the seventh day, but to worship Him. Not much of a requirement for One whom has given us so much, especially our very own life!! The idea was to work those six days and get all the stuff done during those six days so we could rest and worship God on that seventh day. (No need to labor on this point – no pun intended). But what about now? Now that we are under grace and not “The Law”? Well, it is interesting that all nine of the commandments, though not demanded, are listed in the New Testament. But this Fourth Commandment is not! That’s right! There is no commandment for keeping the Sabbath for the believer!! (Did I hear an “Amen” or an “Oh, me?”)

Have you seen the bumper sticker that reads, “I say we fish 5 days and work two”? It’s an idea that a lot people would love to enforce, but they are wrong theologically. Especially when comparing to this Fourth Commandment.

The apostle Paul tells us in Colossians 2:16 & 17, not to let anyone judge us on the day we worship or how many times we worship God. He alludes to the Fourth Commandment when he mentions the word “shadow”. You see, the dietary regulations, festivals, and sacrifices (ceremonial aspects of the Old Testament law) were shadows pointing to Christ. Since Christ has come, the shadows have no value (Hebrews 8:5; and 10:1).

Since Christ came, died and rose again, you will find in Acts Chapter 20 that the disciples worshipped on the first day of the week, not the seventh. That was because it was the day of the week that Christ rose from the dead, thus beginning the New Covenant that Christ had previously spoken. The breaking of the Sabbath is not mentioned in the New Testament. The Jerusalem Council (Acts Chapter 15) did not order Gentile believers to keep the Sabbath and Paul never cautioned Christians about breaking the Sabbath. Furthermore, the New Testament explicitly teaches that Sabbath-keeping was not a requirement (Romans 14:5; Galatians 4:10, 11; Colossians 2:16, 17).

So, according to Romans 14:5-10, the Apostle Paul deals directly with the keeping of the Sabbath as well as other Old Testament “Laws”. He gave us instructions in these verses to use our own conscience, since our conscience is guided by the Holy Spirit (Romans 2:14; 15). Let the Holy Spirit judge us and not man, when it comes to our duties and worship to God. As we learn to grow in the good graces of God, through the Holy Spirit, we will mature spiritually. Just as children grow into adults, we grow into mature Christians. That’s why we are not to judge each other in these matters. We may be on different spiritual maturity levels, yet all worship the true and living God! Amen? Amen.

God made the seventh day, sanctified it, rested in it, and expects us to do the same. Whatever six days we work, let us work “whole heartedly as unto God” and on the seventh day (whatever day of the week it is), let us dedicate it to God and keep it extra special for Him. In that, we will receive the blessings of God. May we now go, trust in, and rest in His promise of blessings. Amen.

I’m Pastor Robby teaching His Word, His Work, His Way

OUR CHURCH WITHOUT WALLS,

a ministry of Robert C. Phelps Ministries, Inc.,
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