Rev. Joy Ireland – “Holy Observance of a Holy Day by the Holy One”
“Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy…For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, but He rested on the seventh day. Therefore, the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy.” -- Exodus 20:8, 11
What do holiness and rest have in common? In relation to Sabbath, the concepts are synonymous. To rest is to be holy, as commanded by the Holy One. God’s own rhythm of Creation reiterates this fact that Sabbath is not just about rest, it is about holiness. Those living in obedience will emulate this blessed command and example of God.
Why did God rest? Many reasons come to mind…space for enjoyment of the created order, creation of another distinguishing element of life as God’s people, provision of a level playing ground for all believers before God, demonstration of life as more than productivity no matter how great the work? Whatever the reason(s), the expectation is clear: Sabbath is to be a day different than the other six as exemplified by God, and somehow adherence brings one closer to the holy nature of God.
What a refreshing change for a people who had been in bondage to physical labor for generations! What a rejuvenating lifestyle for us today!! The holy design of God is the proper balance of work and rest. How does your life demonstrate that balance?
- Rev. Joy Ireland, former Assistant Chaplain