This Sunday, June 26th, 2017, Pastor Duane White unpacked an amazing message to continue our Timeless Ten series here at The Bridge Church in Denton, Texas.
Timeless Ten: Catch Your Breath
“Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy, Six days you shall labor and do all your work, 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 manservant or maidservant, nor your animals, nor the alien within your gates. For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, but he rested on the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy.” (Exodus 20:8-11, NIV)
The pace of life is so hectic. We think the busier we are, the more important we are. We wear “busy-ness” like a badge of honor. You can burn the candle at both ends and find out we are not that bright after all.
The fourth truth in our Timeless Ten series deals with this issue:
“Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy.” (Exodus 20:8, NIV)
When is the Sabbath?
For the Hebrew people, is was the seventh day of the week, which in our calendar today would be Saturday. The early church was forced to worship from the evening after the Sabbath and the morning of the first day of the week. In the third century Christianity began to have an influence on society, and in AD 321, Constantine required people to take one day a week off for rest and worship on the first day of the week. That is why we still worship on the first day of the week.
It has nothing to do with the day of the week necessarily. Saturday is not holy. Sunday is not holy. Rather, the practice of sabbath that is what God made holy. Sabbath means to cease, or to cease from our labor. It’s a reminder that God’s work is much more productive than yours.
Like most of the commandments, people have turned the sabbath into a religious rule, rather than God’s beautiful intention.
“And He said to them, ‘The Sabbath was made for man, and not man for the Sabbath.’” (Mark 2:27, NKJV)
This command is meant to be a blessing, not a burden. It is for our benefit, not for God’s.
How do we keep the Sabbath?
Here are three principles to help you honor the Sabbath:
- A day to rest our bodies.
- A day to recharge our soul (mind, will, and emotions).
- A day to be renewed spiritually.
Our bodies need rest; God made it that way, and we are not going to change that fact. So the principle of having a little time each week to let our bodies catch up is for us, not for God.
Life is filled with external noise and internal noise. External noise will never fully be eliminated, but internal noise must be eliminated to keep your connection with God. Constant connection to life’s external noise will keep us from the ability to eliminate internal noise.
“The ability to simplify means to eliminate the unnecessary so that the necessary may speak.” (Hans Hoffman)
Sabbath is about connection. In it’s simplest form, life is about our connection to God, and our connection to His people. So it stands to reason that the enemy is constantly trying to stop that connection. Connecting with God weekly in a sabbath, will always result in truly engaging with people.
Worship renews our spirit like sleep renews our body. Many people worship their work, they work at their play, and they play at their worship.
Sabbath is about simplification. Simplification is really about priorities. When God speaks to you about simplification, He’s not referring to a mess free, perfect-looking life. God is not afraid of a mess, but in the midst of the mess, He wants to build a real home you can enjoy.
The reality is that simplicity is not simple. The journey to simplification can actually be a complex process.
“Amid the confused relentlessness of modern life our weary lives dream of simplicity.” – Charles Wagner
We must face the reality that the world is not going to slow down, technology is not going away, and 24/7 access to information is increasing not decreasing. The journey to simplicity is practically more challenging. Life never drifts towards simplicity; it takes effort and focus.
Sabbath is about connection, simplification, and rhythm. The idea of rhythm is central to God instituting a Sabbath. God created the world and then He rested. He didn’t rest because He was worn out, but to model the rhythm of work and rest. God designed life to be lived in a rhythm.
Are you giving God His time, His day, first? Are you resting in Him?
When we learn live in the rest of God, we get the rest of God. When we learn to live in the rest of God, ceasing from our labor, we get the rest of God, all the parts we have not seen. There are parts of God you have not yet seen. There are dimensions of God you have not yet explored. There are realms in God you have not yet experienced. Don’t you want the rest?
Watch the full message here:
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