As we saw earlier, the Sabbath points to more than just the days of creation. The second time we hear the Ten Commandments, Moses is reviewing Israel’s 40 years in the wilderness. This time, the sentence introducing the reason for keeping the Sabbath holy is not about creation but rather about liberation from slavery and bondage in Egypt (Deuteronomy 5:12-15).
And though, today, we are not slaves in Egypt, we can all face another kind of slavery, one that, in some ways, can be just as oppressive.
What other forms of slavery do we face today? Read Genesis 4:7, Hebrews 12:1, and 2 Peter 2:19.
Sabbath is a celebration of freedom from all the things that keep us in bondage. On Sabbath, we are reminded that there is freedom from sin, not in our own power but in the power of God, which is offered to us by faith. We also are reminded that this is a freedom we did not earn. The firstborn Israelite children were saved by the blood of the lamb smeared on the doorposts the evening before their exodus from Egypt (Exodus 12). We, too, have been saved by the blood of the Lamb, and are now to walk in the freedom that is ours in Christ Jesus.
Read Romans 6:1-7. What is Paul saying here that can be linked to what we have been given in the Sabbath?
In the very wording of Deuteronomy 5:15 — “And remember that you were a slave in the land of Egypt, and the LORD your God brought you out from there by a mighty hand and by an outstretched arm” (NKJV) — the people are reminded, again, that it was the work and power of God in their behalf that saved them. How much more so should we, as Christians, realize that it’s only the work and power of Christ in our behalf that has saved us from sin?
This command tells us to rest in the salvation that God has earned for us by His mighty arm. We are set free from our own attempts at righteousness as we remember that God is Creator and that we can trust Him to re-create us, too, and to free us, even right now, from the bondage of sin if we are willing to let Him work in us.
|What has been your own experience with the slavery of sin? How can we learn to appropriate for ourselves the promises that we have been given in Jesus of freedom from that slavery?|