Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Sabbath rest vs religion

OK, I'll admit it. Sometimes my morning devotional time is more duty then devotion. I arose this morning asking the Almighty, "What have you got for me today LORD?" But even that was a question based on duty more then dedication to The Way.

Le Meraviglie di Matilda
After scanning my Amy Carmichael book, Edges of His Ways" usually a sure jump start to my mornings, nothing. So I picked up my Mark Study, really not expecting much before moving on to Urban Farm plans and projects.

One Sabbath Day, as Jesus was walking through some grain-fields, 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 Abiather 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 Sabbath So the Son of Man is Lord even over the Sabbath.     Mark 2:23-28 nlt

I was not expecting much. Honestly my understanding of Sabbath tends to come down to the Church rejecting it because the Pope said we should (or because it is too Jewish and we are free) and all the physical religious limitations practiced by the few synagogues (even Messianic synagogues) that I have attended. I'll save you the tedium of seeing that there is a difference between following Y'shua/Jesus and practicing religion. I came to verse 28, So the Son of Man is Lord even over the Sabbath. Mostly just glancing at my Greek Interlinear Bible which says (in Greek, I'm just giving you the English) Therefore (the) Lord is the Son of Man also of the Sabbath. Wait, What?

Sabbath was made to meet the needs of People. YHVH became one of us, Ben Adam (son of Adam) But why did he do that?

In a nutshell we were created to be what Peter calls Priests and Kings, or a royal priesthood. (1 Peter 2:9, Revelation 1:6, 5:10) All of creation was put into our care (Genesis 1:26-28) but we gave it away for a pretty little bite of the forbidden. The result was the first death in all of Creation to cover sin, Grace (Genesis 3:21) For the very first time, relationship with our beloved Creator was replaced by slavery to our overlord. (Ephesians 2:2). From that time on, most of humanity could have religion or freedom from religion, but not a relationship with the Almighty... not until Y'shua came as the Son of Man.

Men have a desire to be part of something big. Religion is all about being part of something big and relevant. Pious people will generally submit to the rules of religion because we believe in God. But we only have men and their understanding of the Scripture as a guide to living. Wanting to serve the Almighty, we submit ourselves to religion. Freedom comes from submitting ourselves to relationship with Y'shua ben Adam, Jesus the Son of Man. Following him, religion became irrelevant to the disciples. When they were hungry they were fed, even on Sabbath. The religious were shocked and vocalized their shock. "Why are they breaking the law by harvesting on Sabbath?"  (vs 24)

Sabbath is a beautiful picture of rest. It is religion that makes it hard to "do right" We do not want to be bound up in the regulations for rest. Religion has made Sabbath so bad that the church has said that God eliminated this "top ten" commandment. I do not agree with that. But I do think that a born again, follower of Y'shua in The Way has a freedom that the church and Synagogue cannot understand in their pious attempts to please our God. Y'shua is the Son of Man, Lord of Sabbath! He is the creator (John 1:1-4) and never sinned. He sets us free to walk in His joy, freedom from slavery to the prince of the power of the air and our own march toward death (the natural man).

The Almighty gave you a gift. It is Sabbath, it is to be guarded. Some say that "In Jesus, every day is the Sabbath to me." If so then I do not understand most of what they do, usually it is not about resting in their Jesus. Stop a while and rest, Shabbat Shalom! He is Lord, give him his crown and he will give you peace.

Mrs. Hagerty November 22, 2016

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