Posted by: Bill Hornbeck | February 28, 2014

Sabbath, Complete Rest, “I will put My laws upon their heart”, Psalm 23:2-3, and God’s Promptings.

Today’s devotion comes from Exodus 35:1-3.

“1 Then Moses assembled all the congregation of the sons of Israel, and said to them, “These are the things that the Lord has commanded you to do:

2 “For six days work may be done, but on the seventh day you shall have a holy day, a sabbath of complete rest to the Lord; whoever does any work on it shall be put to death. 3 You shall not kindle a fire in any of your dwellings on the sabbath day.” Exodus 35:1-3.

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The Sabbath rest is emphasized again, and we should pay attention again and meditate on it, rather than just think: “I already know it.”

Today’s devotion will focus on the “complete rest” aspect of the Sabbath. We see that term repeated in Scripture.

“For six days work may be done, but on the seventh day there is a sabbath of complete rest, holy to the Lord; whoever does any work on the sabbath day shall surely be put to death.” Exodus 31:15.

“‘For six days work may be done, but on the seventh day there is a sabbath of complete rest, a holy convocation. You shall not do any work; it is a sabbath to the Lord in all your dwellings.” Leviticus 23:3.

“It is to be a sabbath of complete rest to you, and you shall humble your souls; on the ninth of the month at evening, from evening until evening you shall keep your sabbath.” Leviticus 23:32.

And, an example showing the extent to which the Sabbath should be a day of complete rest is given in today’s Scripture. “You shall not kindle a fire in any of your dwellings on the sabbath day.” Verse 3. Now, none of us today are tempted to kindle a fire in our dwelling, but the point is that it was very common in that day and we can understand that it vividly demonstrates the extent to which the Sabbath should be a day of complete rest.

As Christians we know that we should not be legalistic bound to the letter of the Law, but rather we should follow Christ, walk by the Spirit, and depend on God’s work within us, putting His laws upon our heart and mind.

““This is the covenant that I will make with them

After those days, says the Lord:

I will put My laws upon their heart,

And on their mind I will write them, …” Hebrews 10:16.

God will certainly use Scripture to so lead us.

We may appreciate God using the Sabbath of “complete rest” to accomplish what is spoken in Psalm 23:2-3.  We may even cherish it.

“He makes me lie down in green pastures;

He leads me beside quiet waters.

He restores my soul;

He guides me in the paths of righteousness

For His name’s sake.” Psalm 23:2-3.

God may also prompt us to make the Sabbath a day of “complete rest” in ways very specific to us. Rather than focusing on the letter of the Law in “You shall not kindle a fire in any of your dwellings on the sabbath day.”, as one example, God has gently prompted me over time to embrace not reading certain sections of the newspaper (that contain news or business) on the Sabbath. And, there may be other very specific ways that God has gently prompted you to embrace to help make Sabbath a day of “complete rest”.


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