Theme of the Week: Rest-Work Balance
Bible Verse: Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect. Romans 12:2 ESV
Scripture Reading: Exodus 20:8-11
Most of the Ten Commandments are hardly surprising. Don’t lie. Don’t kill. Don’t commit adultery. Not many people would argue against the wisdom of these commands.
But one command surprises: the command to honour the Sabbath. Why does God care about us getting enough rest? This command is high on God’s priority list. It’s the longest of the ten, and mentioned more often in the Old Testament than any other of the Ten Commandments.
From the very beginning, God established a pattern of work and rest (Genesis 2:1-3). God wants his people to imitate him and follow the same pattern. The word Sabbath literally means to rest; to cease certain activities. The idea seems to be that, one day a week, we cease work and remember that we’re not God. The idea isn’t to indulge ourselves; it’s to deny ourselves by breaking our self-dependence and teaching us to rely on God.
Many today debate whether the Sabbath is an ongoing command. I agree with Christopher Ash: “Even if the Sabbath is no longer an old-covenant religious obligation, we are simply foolish to behave as though we no longer need a day off each week.”1
Put simply, God created us to function well when we work and rest.
1 Ash, Christopher. Zeal without Burnout: Seven keys to a lifelong ministry of sustainable sacrifice. The Good Book Company. Kindle Edition. location 466
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