>As I told you in my last post, we are studying the 10 Commandments at church. The next two have proven to be just as enthralling as the first 3.
You can find the commandments in Exodus chapter 20.
As previously stated, in each study we cover 3 main topics:
- Denotation – what it means
- Motivation – why God gave us this commandment
- Application – how we can apply these in our daily lives
4. Remember the Sabboth Day, and keep it holy.
- Denotation: The word sabboth literaly means to rest. God has given us the perfect example, in the creation of the Earth. He worked for 6 days, and rested on the 7th, and it was good. Unlike the other 9 commandments, this one, alone, is not re-itterated as to which day imparticular you should rest. Colossians 2:16 “So let no one judge you in food or in drink, or regarding a festival or a new moon or sabbaths, which are a shadow of things to come, but the substance is of Christ”. Traditionally, as set in the Old Testament, the Sabbath day was a saturday. However, this was a covenant between the Jews and God. Once Christ came to save us, we gained the freedom of choice in this area. The rules are simple. Work your six days, but take one day a week to give to the Lord. If we can do this, it keeps us focused on God, and forces us to take a step back, relax, and praise him.
- Motivation: As with all of God’s word, he gave it for a reason. If you don’t stop to rest, you will eventually burn out, and then nothing you do will be worth what it could be, if you had only taken the time to recharge your batteries. Matthew 12:1-8 tells a short story of Jesus walking through the fields with his disciples on the Sabbath. He begins to pluck the grain, as the men were hungry, and some Pharisees saw them. They told Jesus that he was dishonoring the holy day, but Jesus replies, “For the Son of Man is Lord even of the Sabbath.” As Pastor Ron says, the Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath. God knows that we need to rest to be at our best, and talking and walking with him in those times, as well as daily, we can achieve our goals. Believe in God, and take the time, atleast one day of the week to walk with him, and think not of work. A great example is the owner of Chic’fila. The man is a Christian, and prayed to God before starting his business. He said that he wanted to obey God’s commandment, and have a day of rest. If he couldn’t make enough money during the other six days to support the business, then it was not meant for him to have it. Well, guess what..it is one of the most profitable fast food chains in America.
- Application: So, what should we do about this? It’s simple: Rest! Remember the Lord! and Refocus! Part of your weekly walk with God should be going to Church. Nothing charges your batteries more than seeing a whole congregation gathered together to worship God. It is a place where the Holy Spirit frequents, and if you have never experienced it, you should definitly think about going to a Sunday study. Church is also one of the great ways to refocus your thoughts on Him, and help get your mind right for the rest of the week. Something I have been admiring about Seth lately, is his commitment to wake up 10 min. early to spend time reading God’s words. It makes me love him that much more, and I have noticed a calmness come over him, and a new found love for life. Take an inventory of your life, marriage and accomplishments each week…is it good?
5. Honor your father and mother.
- Denotation: Your parents know what’s best..of course! It’s not only that, though. It also has to do with respect and honor, and growing with the Lord, through the examples set by your parents. There are those of you out there who might have had a terrible childhood…and asking what your parents wanted of you may have been morally wrong. Acts 5:29 explains a situation where the apostles are confronted by the high priests. The priests are condeming them for going against this fifth commandment by obeying the words and actions of Jesus, rather than them. The apostles say, “We ought to obey God rather than men.” Jesus set the highest example of this commandment in Luke 2:41-52. He was 12 years old, and Joseph and Mary took him to Jeruselum for the Feast of the Passover. After it was over, they left, and had traveled about a day, and couldn’t find Jesus. They returned to Jeruselem to find him in the temple, talking to the elders. His parents asked why he had done this to them, and He retorts, “Why did you seek me? Did you not know that I must be about My Father’s business?” After this, He willingly goes with them, and the Bible says he grew in wisdom and stature, and in favor of God and men. Basically, because He did what God would want in this commandment, the Bible says that he became smarter and wiser. That should be what we strive for with our parents also.
- Motivation: It is easy to see why God would make this a commandment. In most cases, the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. If you see your parents busy with work all the time, then chances are you will grow up to be busy with work all the time. If you read the Bible, and go to church, and have God at your center at all times, then chances are, your children will grow up to have the same relationships with God. Your children will turn out like you. Sounds like the perfect reason for a commandment. Even in a horrible situation, God’s word never returns void. Children, and even grown adults who obey their parents are doing right by God, and God will make things right because of it. This commandment even has a blessing attached! Eph. 6:1-3 “Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. ‘Honor your father and mother’ which is the first commandment with promise: that it may be well with you and you may live long on the earth.” You can liken this to a child running towards the street, and the parents saying, “stop! car!”…the child stops, and they live to see another day.
- Application: There are many ways to apply this commandment to your life wether you are 5 or 50. First, tell your parents you love them, and appreciate what they have done for you. If your childhood was less than perfect, forgive them. Call them up, and tell them you understand it was a difficult time, and you forgive them for it. Tell them you are praying for them. Write them a letter about a good time you shared, and wanted to remember. Do something out of the blue for them, and don’t brag about it. One last thing, be the welfare your parents need. That is why God created children…to take care of their parents. As Pastor Ron said, “They took care of you for the first 20 years. You can take care of them for the last 20.” Ask yourself this question: When your parents pass, will you have peace or regret about this commandment? And one last thing, God is the ultimate Father..you should place Him in the highest position on your family tree.