Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Our Own Pleasure – The Fourth Commandment

Saturday, November 8, 2008, 11:20
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Our Own Pleasure

The fourth commandment

Exodus 20.8; Deuteronomy 5.12

“Remember, observe the Sabbath day, to keep it holy.”

Isaiah 58.13, 14

“If you turn back your foot from the Sabbath, from doing your pleasure on My holy day, and call the Sabbath a delight and the holy day of the LORD honorable; if you honor it, not going your own ways, or seeking your own pleasure, or talking idly; then you shall take delight in the LORD, and I will make you ride on the heights of the earth; I will feed you with the heritage of Jacob your father, for the mouth of the LORD has spoken.”

Anything not focused on God must be focused on us.

It’s hard to miss that “your pleasure” emphasis in God’s word through Isaiah. God does not intend for us to use His day for “our own pleasure” or “our own ways” or even “talking idly.” Why? Is He just so stern and stubborn that He can’t give us a break? Or does He know something about what’s best for us that we don’t, finite, fallible, and foolish children that we are? Essentially, anything not devoted to honoring the Lord and delighting in Him falls into the category of our own pleasure. Tomorrow, countless numbers of believing parents will train their children to be Sabbath-breakers, robbing them of the heritage of God’s promises, by hauling them around to sports activities, taking them to the mall, or plopping down in front of the television for a little idle self-indulgence. Parent, how would you respond to someone who broke into your bank and stole everything that you had been laying aside to provide for your children after you’re gone? We do the very same thing when we teach our children that going to church is enough for God on His day. The rest of it we can do with as we please – exactly contrary – contrary! – to the clear Word of God.

You may be disagreeing with everything I’ve written this week. If so, on what grounds? What Biblical grounds? How do you plan to explain to God – and to your children – that you don’t have to keep His clear word concerning the Lord’s Day?

“In the Gates” is a devotional series on the Law of God by Rev. T.M. Moore

T. M. Moore is editor of the Worldview Church. He serves as dean of the Centurions Program of the Wilberforce Forum and principal of The Fellowship of Ailbe, a spiritual fellowship in the Celtic Christian tradition. He is the author or editor of twenty books, and has contributed chapters to four others. His essays, reviews, articles, papers, and poetry have appeared in dozens of national and international journals, and on a wide range of websites. His most recent books are The Ailbe Psalter and The Ground for Christian Ethics (Waxed Tablet).

Scripture quotations in this article are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version, (c) copyright 2001,2007 by Crossway Bibles, a division of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Editor’s note: The use of a translation other than the Authorised Version in an article does not constitute an endorsement in whole or in part by The Christian Observer.

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