To Sabbath or Not to Sabbath?
“I’m not bound to the law.”
That’s something you hear often as a defense for not keeping Sabbath.
Here’s another one:
“The Sabbath was made for man, not man for The Sabbath.” Mark 2:27. True again. Ooooh, now we’re quoting Jesus. We’re not going to dispute Jesus.
Both statements are technically true. But you can be right and wrong at the same time. When you look at the context of Jesus’ statement, (which supports “I’m not bound to the law,” as well) you see why he says what he says. The religious people were coming down on Him for not holding tightly to every little law. Across chapter 2 of Mark, they were nipping at his heels for forgiving sins (vs. 6), eating with “sinners,” (vs. 16), and breaking fast, (vs. 18).
Then comes the Sabbath debate.
What Jesus was communicating wasn’t “don’t Sabbath” but instead, “The tail doesn’t wag the dog here, guys.”
Let’s bring it to today. Where I stand, we have loads of Christians doing one of two things: holding tightly to Sabbath with a lot of rules, or defending our freedom from Sabbath rest, and they are exhausted.
We need Sabbath. Sabbath was built into creation: work six days, rest one, the cycle of seasons, and body cycles (we must sleep or we crash and burn). It was also built into the Ten original laws, or commandments.
We don’t need a rule, but we do need rest.
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Your Calling For Today
Think about it: Do you tend to fall on the “I’m free (and exhausted”) side of the leger, or “tightly keeping Sabbath” side? If it’s not readily apparent, ask God to show you. Then adjust. If you generally live in the healthy rest-without-rigidity place, thank God for helping you understand and strike the balance.
Next week, some tips to grow in this area!