SERIES: STONE TABLETS IN A WIRELESS WORLD SERMON: SONDAY 9-2-18 By Pastor Rhonda Howard
OPENER: Exodus 20:1 – 18(Niv) And God spoke all these words: 2
“I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery.
“You shall have no other gods before me.
“You shall not make for yourself an image in the form of anything in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the waters below. 5 You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God, punishing the children for the sin of the parents to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me, 6 but showing love to a thousand generations of those who love me and keep my commandments.
“You shall not misuse the name of the LORD your God, for the LORD will not hold anyone guiltless who misuses his name.
“Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy. 9 Six days you shall labor and do all your work, 10 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 animals, nor any foreigner residing in your towns. 11 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.
“Honor your father and your mother, so that you may live long in the land the LORD your God is giving you.
“You shall not murder.
“You shall not commit adultery.
“You shall not steal.
“You shall not give false testimony against your neighbor.
“You shall not covet your neighbor’s house. You shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, or his male or female servant, his ox or donkey, or anything that belongs to your neighbor.”
When the people saw the thunder and lightning and heard the trumpet and saw the mountain in smoke, they trembled with fear. Illustration: How many of us would like to have more hours in our day? More days in your week? More weeks in a year? More years in your life? If you could have more than 24 hours in a day, how many would you like? According to a survey in the UK, men would like an extra 6 hours and 36 minutes in their day, and women want 6 hours 30 minutes. I looked for a similar survey among Americans but I think we must be too busy to answer a survey because I couldn’t find one! Most of us probably feel like all we’re doing is running around from one thing to another. Have you noticed how many times people answer the question, “How are you?” with this phrase, “I’m busy!” or “I’m crazy busy!” or “We’re going in a hundred different directions this summer!” It’s almost like we need to validate our lives by letting people know how busy; dreadfully busy; you have no idea what I have to do busy; shockingly busy; much too busy. When people tell me they haven’t been to church for a while, the number one answer I hear is, “We’ve just been too busy!” You probably should lean forward a bit so you can really listen to what I am about to say, because the fourth commandment deals with 1/7 or 14% of our time. Let’s say it this way…. If you’re 14 years old, this commandment covers 2 years of your life. If you’re 21 years old, it applies to 3 years of your life. If you’re 42, then 6 years. If you’re 63 then 9 years of your life. KNOWING THE TEN COMMANDMENTS EXERCISE: One of the purposes in this series is to quote the commandments in their correct order: 1. Hold up pointer finger – point to the sky (no other gods) 2. Hold up two pointer fingers – have one bow before the other (no idols) 3. Hold up three fingers – place over mouth (don’t take God’s name in vain) 4. Hold up four fingers – place on cheek as if to nap (Sabbath rest) 5. Hold up five fingers – place hand over heart (honor parents) 6. Hold up hand and make a gun – (don’t murder) 7. Hold up five fingers on one hand and the pointer and middle finger on the other and cross them to show they are bonded together (No adultery) 8. Hold up four fingers on both hands – using one hand grab the other (No stealing)
Let’s add one today: 9. Hold up four fingers on one hand and five on the other – move the four up and down as they face the five to show that they are lying or bearing false witness about others (no lying) JOKE: At Sunday School they were learning how God created everything, including human beings. Johnny was especially intent when the teacher told him how Eve was created out of one of Adam's ribs. Later in the week his mother noticed him lying down as though he were ill, and said, "Johnny, what is the matter?" Johnny responded, "I have pain in my side. I think I'm going to have a wife." Sermon Title: Sonday I. THE FOURTH COMMANDMENT Exodus 20:8-11 (niv)“Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy. 9 Six days you shall labor and do all your work, 10 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 animals, nor any foreigner residing in your towns. 11 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. 1. This is the last vertical command. The first four deal with our relationship with God, the next six deal with our relationship with others. 2. This is the longest of the 10 commandments. 3. This commandment is the most controversial. More has been written and debated about this commandment than perhaps any other one. II.TWO REQUIREMENTS IN THIS COMMANDMENT 1.REMEMBER Remember the Sabbath day … Remember = means much more than jogging our memory that the Sabbath Day has arrived. In Deuteronomy 5 where the 10 commandments are reinstated it says, “observe” the Sabbath. Illustration: Let’s say that your wedding anniversary is Friday. You remember that it’s Friday, but if you don’t pick up roses and a card and take your wife out to dinner it’s not much of an anniversary is it? How many observe the 4th of July? Do you just remember when it is? No, you go to the store, and buy hamburgers to grill, clean the patio, you buy fireworks and invite your family and friends over.
Observe - fulfill or comply with · abide by · keep · · conform to · heed · honor · respect · · pay attention to · How are we to remember the Sabbath? …by keeping it holy Holy = to be set apart, root means to separate or to elevate GOD HAS SET THE SABBATH APART TO BE A HOLY DAY. THE SABBATH IS TO BE OBSERVED AND HONORED AND RESPECTED AS A HOLY DAY UNTO THE LORD. 2. SET A PATTERN OF YOUR TIME God has set a pattern for us of work and rest; of labor and leisure. Vs. 9 Six days you shall labor and do all your work, 10 but the seventh day is a sabbath to the LORD your God. On it you shall not do any work…….. God started this pattern of our time with the Israelites in the wilderness when he provided them with manna to eat. They were to gather for six days and on the sixth day gather twice as much so they would not work on the seventh day. Sabbath = means to cease from labor THE SABBATH IS TO BE A DAY OF REST IN HONOR TO GOD. Be still and know that I am God. Note: This command also speaks to those who are head of the household. This command is for everyone in your house. Vs. 10……..On it you shall not do any work, neither you, nor your son or daughter, nor your male or female servant, nor your animals, nor any foreigner residing in your towns. III. IS THIS COMMAND RELEVANT FOR US TODAY? Does the fourth commandment apply to our lives today? We have different views on what people think about the Sabbath: The Sabbath is still Saturday and that’s when Christians should worship (Seventh Day Adventist) Sunday has replaced the Sabbath and its rules and regulations should still be followed. There is no Sabbath day anymore and we don’t have to obey this command. Which view is correct? Let’s look at the written Word:
There are 134 times the word Sabbath is mentioned the Bible. We are going to look at several verses here so we can answer this question and have a greater understanding of this command. IV. JESUS’ CONTROVERSY WITH SABBATH REGULATIONS Jesus had tremendous controversy with the religious leaders over the Sabbath. Let’s look at some of these scriptures…. SABBATH REGULATIONS Matthew 12:1-8 (niv) At that time Jesus went through the grainfields on the Sabbath. His disciples were hungry and began to pick some heads of grain and eat them. 2 When the Pharisees saw this, they said to him, “Look! Your disciples are doing what is unlawful on the Sabbath.” 3
He answered, “Haven’t you read what David did when he and his companions were hungry? 4 He entered the house of God, and he and his companions ate the consecrated bread—which was not lawful for them to do, but only for the priests. 5 Or haven’t you read in the Law that the priests on Sabbath duty in the temple desecrate the Sabbath and yet are innocent? 6 I tell you that something greater than the temple is here. 7 If you had known what these words mean, ‘I desire mercy, not sacrifice,’ you would not have condemned the innocent. 8 For the Son of Man is Lord of the Sabbath.” Explain passage: Jewish leaders came up with 39 Sabbath regulations/laws, with each having multiple subdivisions? There were more than 1500 things prohibited to do on the Sabbath. Not killing a flea that landed on your arm, because that could make you guilty of hunting on the Sabbath. If a man’s ox fell into a ditch, he could pull it out, but if a man fell in he had to stay there. You could dip your radish in salt, but if you left it there too long it was considered pickling and that was working. Mark 2:27-28 Then he said to them, “The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath. 28 So the Son of Man is Lord even of the Sabbath.” Jesus is saying, “Hey guys I make the rules here and…. THE SABBATH WAS NEVER INTENDED TO BE A BURDEN - BUT A BLESSING. POINT#1: JESUS IS LORD OF THE SABBATH. HE CREATED IT AND DEFINES ITS PURPOSE. Luke 13:10-17(niv) On a Sabbath Jesus was teaching in one of the synagogues, 11 and a woman was there who had been crippled by a spirit for eighteen years. She was bent over and could not
straighten up at all. 12 When Jesus saw her, he called her forward and said to her, “Woman, you are set free from your infirmity.” 13 Then he put his hands on her, and immediately she straightened up and praised God. Indignant because Jesus had healed on the Sabbath, the synagogue leader said to the people, “There are six days for work. So come and be healed on those days, not on the Sabbath.” 15
The Lord answered him, “You hypocrites! Doesn’t each of you on the Sabbath untie your ox or donkey from the stall and lead it out to give it water? 16 Then should not this woman, a daughter of Abraham, whom Satan has kept bound for eighteen long years, be set free on the Sabbath day from what bound her?” THE SABBATH HAD STOPPED BEING ABOUT GOD AND HAD BECOME A RELIGIOUS OBLIGATION. POINT #2: WE SHOULD NEVER LET OUR WORSHIP BECOME A RELIGIOUS HABIT. Luke 14:1-6 14 One Sabbath, when Jesus went to eat in the house of a prominent Pharisee, he was being carefully watched. 2 There in front of him was a man suffering from abnormal swelling of his body. 3 Jesus asked the Pharisees and experts in the law, “Is it lawful to heal on the Sabbath or not?” 4 But they remained silent. So taking hold of the man, he healed him and sent him on his way. 5
Then he asked them, “If one of you has a child[a] or an ox that falls into a well on the Sabbath day, will you not immediately pull it out?” 6 And they had nothing to say. POINT #3 SABBATH IS NOT ABOUT A REST OF SELFISHNESS, BUT ABOUT HONORING GOD WITH OUR HEARTS AND OUR LIVES. V. SABBATH IS A SIGN TO US OF SALVATION REST Key to the Sabbath is found in……. Exodus 31:12-13 (niv) 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. God loved to give signs when he made covenants with His people. With Noah – the sign was the rainbow. With Abraham – it was circumcision. With Moses – it is the Sabbath. A sign points you to something! Hebrews 4: 8-11 8 For if Joshua had given them rest, God would not have spoken later about another day. 9 There remains, then, a Sabbath-rest for the people of God; 10 for anyone who enters God’s rest also rests from their works, just as God did from his. 11 Let us, therefore, make every effort to enter that rest, so that no one will perish by following their example of disobedience. Sabbath is all about rest. Instead of being busy and working to be accepted by God, it’s time to believe and rest in our acceptance.
POINT #4: SABBATH IS A SIGN TO US OF SALVATION REST. THERE ARE TWO WAYS YOU CAN TRY AND GET TO HEAVEN. YOU CAN TRY TO WORK YOUR WAY IN, WHICH WILL NEVER WORK. OR YOU CAN GET IN BY THE WORK OF ANOTHER. WE MUST REST FROM ALL OUR EFFORTS BECAUSE IN CHRIST WE FIND A TOTAL REST. CHRIST FULFILLED THE LAW AND CHRIST FULFILLED THE SABBATH. CHRIST HAS PROVIDED A SABBATH REST FOR YOU! NOT ONLY IS CHRIST LORD OF THE SABBATH. HE IS THE SABBATH! THREE QUESTIONS I WANT TO ANSWER 1.IS THERE A SPECIFIC DAY TO HONOR THE SABBATH? The New Testament church changed the Sabbath to the first day of the week and called it the Lord’s Day. They started meeting on Sunday instead of Saturday in honor of the resurrection. The early church leaders taught that the Old Testament Sabbath had been fulfilled by Christ and that the church was to meet on Sunday to commemorate the Resurrection. Luther and Calvin believed the same. Acts 20:7 (NIV) On the first day of the week we came together to break bread. 1 Corinthians 16:2 (NIV) On the first day of every week, each one of you should set aside a sum of money in keeping with your income, saving it up, so that when I come no collections will have to be made. Revelation 1:10 (niv) On the Lords Day I was in the Spirit… LET’S HONOR SUNDAY AS THE LORD’S DAY. 2.WHAT IF I HAVE TO WORK ON SUNDAY? Colossians 2: 16-17 (NIV) Therefore do not let anyone judge you by what you eat or drink, or with regard to a religious festival, a New Moon celebration or a Sabbath day. 17 These are a shadow of the things that were to come; the reality, however, is found in Christ. 3.IS GOING TO CHURCH A PART OF HONORING THE SABBATH? Hebrews 10:23-25 Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful. 24 And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, 25 not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching. CLOSING:
PRACTICING THIS COMMAND 1.LET’S PRESERVE THE SABBATH BY SETTING SUNDAY, THE FIRST DAY OF THE WEEK APART AS THE LORD’S DAY. Let’s focus on the Lord as our redeemer . Six days is for work and Sunday is for worship. Sunday is fading away as a special day. Our great, great grandparents called it the Holy Sabbath. Our great grandparents called it the Sabbath. Our grandparents called it Sunday. Now everyone JUST calls it the weekend. Come ready to worship on Sunday, Get up early on Sundays and meet with God. Confess any sins. Make peace with someone you’re in conflict with. When you come don’t just sit and soak; give glory to God by giving him the praise that is due His name. 2. MAKE PREPARATION FOR SUNDAYS Story of the Mayflower: The Mayflower reached Plymouth Harbor on a Saturday afternoon. They must have been eager to finally set foot on solid ground after thirteen weeks of sea sickness and disease. Do you know what they did? They spent Saturday afternoon in preparation for Sunday and then all day Sunday in worship. They finally disembarked on Monday morning, 42 hours after arriving in port. Personal Experience: Tell about Sabbath preparation in Israel. MOST OF US THINK SUNDAY WORSHIP PREPARES US TO HANDLE THE REST OF THE WEEK. AND THAT’S TRUE. BUT I WONDER WHAT WOULD HAPPEN IF WE THOUGHT OF THE OTHER SIX DAYS AS PREPARATION FOR OUR WORSHIP ON SUNDAY? What about going to bed a little earlier than we normally do on Saturday nights so that we’re rested and refreshed for Sunday and ready to give God our best. 3. CELEBRATE SABBATH AS A FAMILY Slow things down in your family. Some of us are way too overscheduled that there’s no time for rest, for refreshment or for rejoicing together as a family on Sundays. Can I share a secret? I wish that all the believers from all the churches would get together that have children that play sports on Sunday mornings and say, “Not anymore! We’re not going to allow this any longer. Sunday is the Son’s Day and we are going to church as a family! If believers would ban together – maybe these leagues would find another day to play. FINAL CLOSING:
WE DON’T REALLY NEED MORE TIME, WE JUST NEED TO USE THE TIME WE ALREADY HAVE DIFFERENTLY. WE DON’T NEED AN EXTRA DAY, GOD HAS ALREADY GIVEN US A SPECIAL DAY IN ORDER TO POUR EXTRA INTO OUR LIVES. Remember the Sabbath day to keep it holy.