“Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days you shall labor, and do all your work, but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the Lord your God. On it you shall not do any work, you, or your son, or your daughter, your male servant, or your female servant, or your livestock, or the sojourner who is within your gates. For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested on the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy.” – Exodus 20:8-11
Q: What is the fourth commandment?
A: You shall make the Sabbath day holy.
What does this mean?
Because we worship and love God, we should love and respect the preaching of his word, and gladly listen and learn from it.
Do you like sleep? Maybe you are younger and don’t like bedtime. Maybe you are a teenager and sleep (especially in the morning) is one of your favorite pastimes. Whether you like to go to bed or not, sleep is an essential part of being human. Did you know that if you deprived yourself of sleep, after a few days you would start hallucinating? (That means you would start dreaming while you were awake.)
In this way, sleep is a reminder that we are weak and needy. We have to sleep! We can’t live without it. If we tried we would cease to function properly. Rest is vital to our physical and mental health.
Here is the important thing to remember: God rules our world just fine when we are asleep in our beds. He doesn’t need us in the same way we need him. So if we can sleep well knowing that God is holding all things together, it should also be that way once a week as we cease working to remember God’s work for us in Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection.
God wants his people to rest in order to reflect on him and what he has done in our lives. Our work is really good but if we don’t rest we’ll eventually burn out and be less efficient and productive just like if we tried to stop sleeping.
Read Psalm 121:
I lift up my eyes to the hills. From where does my help come? My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth. He will not let your foot be moved; he who keeps you will not slumber. Behold, he who keeps Israel will neither slumber nor sleep. The Lord is your keeper; the Lord is your shade on your right hand. The sun shall not strike you by day, nor the moon by night. The Lord will keep you from all evil; he will keep your life. The Lord will keep your going out and your coming in from this time forth and forevermore.
- Does God ever sleep?
- How should that relate to our sleeping? (We can rest in peace because God is in control and will keep our life.)
Our Father, thank you that you never sleep or slumber. Thank you that we can trust in you and that we can cease our working, knowing that you are our true provider. May we rest well because we know you love us. In Jesus’ name, Amen.