Remember the Sabbath
Passage: Exodus 20:8–20:11
Freed to be God’s people: a study of Exodus
Remember the Sabbath–outline
Because of God’s pattern, his people should rest from their normal activities one day a week
1. God says the words he is going to speak are because he is his people’s God who delivered them from slavery, 20:1-2.
What is the significance of the fact that God grounds the Ten Commandments in his deliverance of Israel? In other words, what does this say is and is not God’s purpose for the commandments?
2. To keep the Sabbath holy, God’s people are to remember it, 20:8.
Sabbath means “rest.” Holy means “set apart, not common, dedicated for a special purpose.” From Genesis 2:3, why are God’s people to keep the Sabbath holy? How does v. 8 say God’s people are to keep the Sabbath holy?
3. God’s people are to work six days, but not on the seventh, for it is a Sabbath to God, 20:9-10.
Vss. 9-10 explain further how God’s people are to remember the Sabbath. How are they to remember it? Why does God say that the day is “a Sabbath to the Lord your God”?
4. Since God made heaven and earth and everything in them in six days, and rested on the seventh, he blessed it and made it holy, 20:11.
Considering Genesis 2:1-3, v. 11 gives the reason God’s people are to remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. What is this reason?
When Moses reviews the ten commandments for the next generation of Israelites, when they are ready to enter the land, he presents an additional reason for God’s people to observe the Sabbath to keep it holy. What is it (Deuteronomy 5:12-15, see v.15)? Jesus purposefully challenges the way the Pharisees and scribes had added manmade restrictions to the Sabbath. How do his words in Mark 2:27 challenge what they had made of the Sabbath?
What does Paul say about a Sabbath in Colossians 2:16-17? How does what Paul says in Romans 14:1-6 apply to handling different convictions about the Sabbath? How does Hebrews 3:18–4:11 say Christ has fulfilled the Sabbath?
Throughout church history, there have been varying views as to what it means for Christians to obey the fourth commandment. Should we still observe it on the seventh day? Is Sunday, the Lord’s Day, the Christian Sabbath? Some say that since we are still obligated to obey the other nine commandments, we are still obligated to keep the fourth one. Others say the fourth one is different in that it has been fulfilled in Christ. What can we do on the Sabbath/Lord’s Day? If we have jobs that prevent us from observing the Sabbath on the Lord’s Day (Sunday), can we observe it on a different day?
Let’s assume that the ultimate meaning of the Sabbath has been fulfilled in Jesus, but that God’s creation pattern for the Sabbath is still good for us as a gift of God. Discuss ways that we can both honor the creation pattern as well as Christ’s fulfillment of it. (In the message, four ways were shared for keeping a Sabbath day: stop, rest, delight, contemplate God). Are we too busy to rest one day in seven? What are the consequences if we don’t?