Day Three: The World’s Best Culture

Exodus 20:8-11 (NLT) – Remember to observe the Sabbath day by keeping it holy. You have six days each week for your ordinary work, but the seventh day is a Sabbath day of rest dedicated to the Lord your God. On that day no one in your household may do any work. This includes you, your sons and daughters, your male and female servants, your livestock, and any foreigners living among you. For in six days the Lord made the heavens, the earth, the sea, and everything in them; but on the seventh day he rested. That is why the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and set it apart as holy.

Mark 2:23-27 (NLT) – One Sabbath day as Jesus was walking through some grainfields, his disciples began breaking off heads of grain to eat. But the Pharisees said to Jesus, “Look, why are they breaking the law by harvesting grain on the Sabbath?”
Jesus said to them, “Haven’t you ever read in the Scriptures what David did when he and his companions were hungry? He went into the house of God (during the days when Abiathar was high priest) and broke the law by eating the sacred loaves of bread that only the priests are allowed to eat. He also gave some to his companions.”
Then Jesus said to them, “The Sabbath was made to meet the needs of people, and not people to meet the requirements of the Sabbath.”

“What did Jesus mean when he said, ‘The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath’ (Mark 2:27)? He meant that the Sabbath law was supposed to be for human benefit. Jesus got angry because the leaders of his day had turned something good and beneficial into a burden that people had to submit to. It was as if the law was the master and humans were serving it, whereas, said Jesus, God’s idea was the other way round. He gave the law to serve human needs and help people live in better ways…

“When Jesus said that about the Sabbath, he could have been speaking about the whole law. God gave his law to Israel not to keep himself happy or to take pleasure in finding fault with Israel’s failures but for their own good… Keeping God’s law (living in God’s way) was the way to a life that was wise, healthy, satisfying, and productive — a blessing, in fact. Basically, obedience to God is good for you. And when you think about it, since God made us in the first place, the best way to make life work is to ‘follow the Maker’s instructions.’ God knows what will contribute most to human flourishing.” [Wright, Christopher J. H., How to Preach and Teach the Old Testament for All Its Worth]

God’s culture is the best culture to live. As you live in God’s culture today, may the blessing of God flood your life. Let’s worship to the song “Build My Life” by Housefires.

– ES