After the Pharisees accused Jesus of working on the Sabbath after gleaning wheat heads from the wheat crop, Mark 2:27 states, "And Jesus said to them, The Sabbath was made on account and for the sake of man, not man for the Sabbath" (AMP). The Pharisees taught that doing anything except breathing on the Sabbath was not allowed by God. Since God rested from all He had done on the seventh day, then so should the people of God. What Jesus tried to teach them was that it was permissible to do the work of God on the Sabbath. We are to rest from our work, which means to me our jobs and anything that doesn't have to be done for that one day. But if something comes up that requires us to help someone in any capacity, then we are required to help in any way we can. With the sheep in the ditch example (Matthew 12:11), Jesus was saying, "Would you leave an animal to die just because you didn't want to lift a finger to follow some twisted, man-made law?" Today, He might use the example of the man who was beaten and left for dead on the side of the road (Luke 10:29-37). Would a Pharisee really expect us to leave a dying man unattended, bleeding, and alone? The Pharisees didn't understand that God saves on the Sabbath, and rescues sinners from their sins. Would they tell God that He shouldn't be doing that work on the weekly day off that He designed? The Sabbath day is to be kept holy and doing the work of God, not man, is okay to do.
For me, the Sabbath day is a day to physically and mentally rest from the things of life that keep us from focusing on God. It is the day to go to church and hear the word of God. It is the day where we are to let go spiritually, and to focus on God's goodness to us for the ways He has helped us through the past week. It is the day for us to thank Him for the things we took for granted in the last six days. God knew that there would be a lot for us to love Him and thank Him for, so He gave us a whole day to do so. Unfortunately, we would all have to throw out our TVs, I-pods, smart phones, and computers in order to keep those things from keeping us from giving our all to God on the Sabbath.
Jesus said that the Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath. The Sabbath is a day of rest, reflection, and worship. But might not Jesus have also meant that HE was the Sabbath in which we find our rest, who we reflect upon, and who we worship for that day? Jesus said in Matthew that if we came to Him He would give us rest in which He takes our burdens upon Him so we can reflect upon Him and worship Him without the cares of the world bending our backs to the point of breaking so we can't look up to see Jesus at all. On the Sabbath day we must throw our cares upon the Lord because He cares for us. Only then can we truly rest in Him on that day set aside for us to reflect and worship. First, we worship by trusting in Jesus' ability to take our problems off of our shoulders, and then we worship Him for doing so willingly. The Sabbath is more than a day to rest, it is a day to rest in Jesus, for this is the only way to truly be free to worship and reflect on the things our Lord does for us every day of the week. When we give Him our pitiful amount of troubles, He gives us 100% of himself. That's a trade-off I'll take any hour of the day!
All Scriptures taken from the Holy Bible: Amplified Version. Copyright 1954, 1958, 1962, 1964, 1965, 1987. Used by permission of The Lockman Foundation. Database 2008 WORDsearch Corp.
Bobby Bruno was saved 15 years ago in a way that left him no doubt that Jesus wanted him to reach others with His great and abounding love. He started writing at the age of 12 and hasn't stopped since. He achieved Associates Degree in Biblical Studies from Ohio Christian University in early 2014.
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