Did you know that Rest is Not Optional in God’s ways?
If you remember yesterday’s devotion on Enough, you will remember that the people were instructed to gather just enough manna for that day and no more. Those who did not obey, found that the next day the manna was inedible, stunk, and filled with worms.
However, there was one caveat to this rule. The Day of Rest or the Sabbath.
“And so it was, on the sixth day, that they gathered twice as much bread, two omers for each one. And all the rulers of the congregation came and told Moses. Then he said to them, “This is what the Lord has said: ‘Tomorrow is a Sabbath rest, a holy Sabbath to the Lord. Bake what you will bake today, and boil what you will boil; and lay up for yourselves all that remains, to be kept until morning.’” So they laid it up till morning, as Moses commanded; and it did not stink, nor were there any worms in it. Then Moses said, “Eat that today, for today is a Sabbath to the Lord; today you will not find it in the field. Six days you shall gather it, but on the seventh day, the Sabbath, there will be none.” Exodus 16 : 22
While the manna spoiled every single day if it was saved, on the day before the Sabbath, they collected twice as much and prepared it and in the morning, the Day of the Sabbath, it was good to eat.
This was God showing again that those who obeyed Him would have their needs met.
There are always going to be those who do not obey.
“Now it happened that some of the people went out on the seventh day to gather, but they found none. And the Lord said to Moses, “How long do you refuse to keep My commandments and My laws? See! For the Lord has given you the Sabbath; therefore He gives you on the sixth day bread for two days. Let every man remain in his place; let no man go out of his place on the seventh day.” So the people rested on the seventh day.”
Exodus 16 : 27 – 30
God gave us only 10 Commandments. When you look at the laws for our land, there are far more than 10, yet, most of them could fall under one of the 10. But the 3rd Commandment is that we are to Remember and keep Holy the Sabbath.
The Ten Commandments
And God spoke all these words, saying:
“I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage.
“You shall have no other gods before Me.
“You shall not make for yourself a carved image—any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth; you shall not bow down to them nor serve them. For I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children to the third and fourth generations of those who hate Me, but showing mercy to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments.
“You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain, for the Lord will not hold him guiltless who takes His name in vain.
“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: you, nor your son, nor your daughter, nor your male servant, nor your female servant, nor your cattle, nor your stranger who is within your gates. For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and hallowed it.
“Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long upon the land which the Lord your God is giving you.
“You shall not murder.
“You shall not commit adultery.
“You shall not steal.
“You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.
“You shall not covet your neighbor’s house; you shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, nor his male servant, nor his female servant, nor his ox, nor his donkey, nor anything that is your neighbor’s.”
There was a time in my lifetime where you would not find one shop open on a Sunday. It was the Blue Law upheld by our constitution to promote rest and observance of religious beliefs.
Over time, these laws have been repealed. At first, many people I knew refused to shop on those days because they felt that it was a sin. Now if you mentioned it to anyone 25 years and under, they would probably not even remember a time when places of business were closed on Sundays. Most people do shop 7 days a week, but in order to have the stores open, that it means someone else is working.
Observing the Sabbath is a subject that is very difficult to consider. The penalty for breaking the Sabbath and most of the commandments at the time before Christ, was death. But once Jesus came and died for our sins, we live under grace not law. However, we would expect that if we murdered or stole we would still pay a penalty in our life here on earth for breaking those commandments because they are our laws.
Even Jesus and the disciples were questioned about their activities on the Sabbath.
Jesus healed people on the Sabbath.
I am not trying to stir up arguments about which day of the week is the Sabbath or whether we are required to observe it or not. I simply want to put out the message that God modeled this for us in that on the 7th day He rested and then told us to do so as well. God does not tire or grow weary. He wanted to make an example for us to live by.
There must be a benefit for us in this Sabbath rest.
How many times have you found yourself so immersed in work and the demands of family from preparing meals, to cleaning and laundering that all of a sudden you are overwhelmed, fatigued, even sick and run down?
What happens when there is a Big Snow day? You know, the ones where no can’t go to work, schools are closed and we are warned not to go out. I have lived through a few of those. But what happens? It is almost giddy in the house. We play. We stay in our jammies or we get dressed for the weather and build a snowman. We may bake with our children or watch a movie, play games or nap. Maybe you get in your hot tub and watch the snow or soak in a bubble bath and read a book.
What would you do or not do if you had no “to do”s on your list today?
Giving your brain and your body a rest is not a Luxury it is a “to do”! We wait until we have everything done on our lists ( which never happens!) OR we work so hard throughout the week, that the work we have at home waiting for us will not get done, so we work away the weekend too.
Some of you may have noticed last week that it looked like I missed a day in posting the devotions. I was looking at when Easter was and also counting the 40 days I was writing. I checked my calendar and knew something was amiss. The 40 days is only 6 days a week, the Sabbath is not counted because it is a day of rest. So even in this experience for me, I have had another learning moment. I am not to write on the Sabbath.
One of the messages sometimes lost in the Exodus 16 chapter on Manna is that they had to do twice as much gathering and preparing on the day prior to the Sabbath in order to observe it.
So, as we plan our weeks out, we need to plan our day of rest.
Jesus words to those who challenged him doing good on that day set aside for rest.
*What are your thoughts on the 3rd commandment?
*Do you plan rest in your week?
*If you do, describe the benefits that you see in your life based on that rest.
*If you do not, what benefits do you think you would see if you actually scheduled a day of rest once a week?
*Do you think it is possible to even do this?
*Reflect on the Scriptures today, pray and ask God to direct your ways and to give your more insight into this subject that was so important to Him that He added it as one of the 10 Commandments.
Holy God, Who created this world in only 6 days through the Words you spoke, You rested on the 7th day. Then You command us to also rest as we were set apart as Your people. Teach us what rest means and how to honor Your commandment. Enlighten us on what pleases You and help us to do those very things. Help us to plan according to Your will, to take on work and other activities which take our time and our family’s time only after submitting it to You in prayer. We plan our days often without a thought towards what You would have us do. We humbly ask for Your forgiveness as we set out to do things our own way. Help us daily to hear You and obey. In the Magnificent Name of Jesus, Amen.
I have to confess in getting this one to press I made an error in most of my graphics that had to be redone…I wrote “Rest is not an Option”! Truer words may never have been written for us in our busy lives. So I encourage you to really delve deep into what God is saying to you about rest in your life.
Thank you for joining me here again and please comment below with questions or any encouragement. I would so appreciate any shares on FB, IG, Pins, Tweets or Goggle +. Hope you have an enjoyable REST as I will be observing our Sabbath Day tomorrow and will return on Monday with the next devotion.