By Jim Rast
Sabbath means ‘rest’ and it is why we call Sunday a ‘day of rest’. For the Lord our Christ arose on Sunday after the Sabbath, the first day of the week as shown on all world calendars. Saturday is the Sabbath but, we rest in our Lord on the day he arose, Sunday. He is the Lord of the Sabbath. Matthew 12:8 Luke 6:5 We now rest in the work of our Lord on Sunday the first day of the week.
Work six days and rest/reflect on Sunday. God made all creation in six days for you; then He rested. He does not need physical rest but, stopped, looked at His work and saw it was good. He reflected upon His work as you should your week’s work. What did you do? Was it good?
When I was a very young man, I would go to the bars and clubs and at midnight the bartender would say out loud, “Last call” and everyone would order two or three more drinks. There was the ‘blue law’ which required at midnight on Saturday no more alcohol would be sold until seven Monday morning. Many counties in the USA were called ‘dry counties’ which sold no alcohol at all. There was more respect for the Fourth Commandant in the sixties than now. Getting drunk was thought to be a sin. People then were ashamed to see a drunk on Sunday. All shame is gone now, it seems.
I went to those places for a number of years. Had trouble in my family because I did not lead them in the right way. One Sunday Morning, while there on a job, in New Martinsburg, WVa. I heard a song by Kris Kristofferson called “Sunday Morning Coming Down”. It Goes like this.
On a Sunday morning sidewalk, wishing Lord that was stoned, caused there is something in a Sunday, makes a body feel alone. And there is nothing short of dying or half as lonesome as the sound. Of a sleepy city sidewalk and Sunday morning coming down. I could see and feel that morning what he was saying. I can not forget those words and my way of looking at Sundays was changed never to be the same. Can’t forget that morning.
I have worked, cut grass, gone to the stores and done everything all of us do but, as I write this I remember a young preacher that came to our church. He would buy his gas, cut his grass, eat a big meal on Saturdays and save the leftovers for Sunday dinner. He only preached, rested and never went to the store or restaurants on Sunday. Why do I remember that?
The Third Commandment is the first Law that requires an outward reaction to reflect an inward change. You could do the first three Commandments and not show as much witness to other people as keeping the third Law. This law requires a show of respect to God.
The Ten Commandments are almost gone from our country now. We are not guided by a conscience trained in the Commandments. We have become confused to right and wrong. We plead our conscience to save dogs, cats, horses and cauterize our conscience to kill our babies. We concentrate more on protecting murders and accuse victims. And on it goes.
What would businesses do if all Christians did like my preacher? Maybe not much, it depends on how many real Christians are found in our country. There is a national chicken restaurant chain that closes on Sunday, and is a good witness to the old man that started that business. Hope his children do not go the way of an old man’s children of a very large store chain have. The store chain was closed on Sundays when he ran it and after he died his children started staying open 24/7. They are very rich but, they might not get to go to the place where their father has gone. It is hard for the rich to go through ‘the eye of a needle’. This was an analogy Jesus used referring to going to heaven by a rich man. Matthew 19:24 and Mark 10:25 As a camel, and only one at a time, had to get rid of all his baggage to get through the narrow ‘needle gate’, we have to shed our baggage (cares- love of self) to get to Heaven.
Travelers had to use the needle gate after the main gates were closed to come into Jerusalem. This gate was used for security. The analogy was to show the rich have to get rid of the care for the baggage of wealth. Not many rich remember the Sabbath and keep it holy and I am sure the Lord has a few. Most of them have their minds more on the things of this world and trust not in God but their riches. Ecclesiastes 7:12 and 10:19. Please read.
Read the book “Pilgram’s Progress”, first printed in the 1678 by Thomas Nelson Publishers in England. (Still going) It was used as a text for schooling with the Bible by some first settlers in America. I highly recommend the rich to read it and it will help anyone see their unneeded baggage. We all have it. It is a story about a man trying to get to Heaven and dealing with all the baggage he has to get rid of and trying to find the “narrow road to the straight gate” into Heaven.
RESPECT GOD. REMEMBER THE SABBATH.
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