Monday, June 06, 2005

Remember the Sabbath and Keep it Holy

What does this mean? It is one of the Ten Commandments so breaking it is a sin, right? How do you remember the Sabbath and keep it Holy? This is a topic that gets on my mind every so often and I find it very troubling. I want to honor the Sabbath and keep it holy, but how do I determine what God means and weed through what humans have interpreted God to mean on it. Some people don't treat the 7th day any differently than the other 6 and others (such as my parents) have very specific guidelines they follow. Is it subjective? Sinning isn't subjective is it?

Here is my background: Although my parents weren't tyrants, they did have very strict rules for Sunday behavior some of which was to honor the Sabbath and some of which was to promote Sundays as a Family Day.

* You must attend all church services available at our church unless legitimately physically ill. This meant Sunday School, Morning Worship, Evening Worship, Wednesday night services and any special service or event inbetween. We even went to church on vacation. I honestly never, ever remember not going to church service "just because". Is that right? Salvation isn't based on church attendance, but you do want to honor God

* You cannot do any work on the Sabbath: No employment working, no housework, no homework and oddly enough, on vacation, no fishing. Even during financial problems and long term unemployment my dad would not consider any job that would require working on Sundays and we were also not allowed to accept a job that would call for this. I would challenge sometimes: what if my homework was reading a novel and I enjoyed the novel and I wanted to read it and didn't consider it work - - verdict: still work. I actually used to feel sorry for people's souls as I would see them mowing their lawns on Sundays

*You cannot go anywhere besides church on the Sabbath and definitely do not buy anything: you don't go to stores, gas stations, events, activities, etc., etc., Oddly enough, however, we could go out to dinner if we were financially able which wasn't regularly. That doesn't make sense... however preparing a big meal at home (which was our Sunday routine) and cleaning up, etc. Sounds like work to me. It was always a very big deal if someone was sick in the family on a Sunday and we actually had to go to a store on Sunday to get medicine. It was a freaky and exciting venture.

*No television on Sundays - somehow my brother convinced my parents that Sports wasn't really television so that was an exception, which stunk for my sister and I who wanted to convince them that movies weren't really "television" either, but failed. When more family friendly shows started coming on Sunday evenings, we were allowed to watch shows together. America's Funniest Home Videos and Dr. Quinn Medicine Woman come to mind.

*No playing outside with neighborhood kids or having them over or going over to anyone else's houses unless there were some sort of event with a family from church.

My sister may remind me of others that I am missing, but do you get the picture. How can you be raised like this for 18 years and still not harbor some confusion and guilt on how to treat Sundays. I didn't go to church yesterday to travel to a family Open House in MI. I feel that it was okay, but there is always that tiny little voice chastising me. Is that right? This was all already on my mind and I decided I really had to blog when I was talking to my Mom yesterday and she mentioned how she had purchased a whole bunch of flowers a week or so ago on a Saturday and it was such a beautiful day on the next Sunday, she wanted to go out and plant them, but Dad said it wouldn't be a good idea. It made me sad that my mom couldn't plant her flowers.

Sorry that this is so long, but it is troublesome. Any answers out there?

Special Prayer Requests Today:

My friend from college's mom is having a serious bone marrow transplant today.

Just found out that a relative is having a serious legal situation today.

Special Praises:

Safe traveling through awful weather last night.

Thanks for listening


Rebecca said...

Its me finally!
One item to add to your list is that on vacation, we went grocery shopping on Sunday too!
I think this is one topic where I just haven't thought about it as much as you. And I don't remember having any guilt when I was out of the house and didn't follow Mom and Dad's rules for Sunday. I obviously have not followed as strict of guidelines as they did or do. I think they have made exceptions over the years too which don't really make sense. To me, I think it's a heart thing between you and God. I know if Dad were to have ever given in and worked a job on Sundays, he would have felt he was sinning and that would be wrong. But I think that is a gray area.
I know I could go on and on brainstorming on this, but I think it will boil down to me not having a clue as to a right answer. :) But I do believe, as you seek God in this, He will reveal to you what honoring the Sabbath should mean in your life!

Danielle said...


Thanks for your comment, as always. To answer your surface question, I usually copy and paste the verses from The only time I type in the Scripture is when I use the New Century Version. The website pretty much carries every version EXCEPT the NCV. If Daniel still has his Catalyst Bible, you have the NCV in your house! I actually really like that version, especially since most simple versions don't do much for me. But, I usually read the text in the NIV, NCV, The Message (I know how you love it), and depending on my mood, the Amplified.

I haven't commented on your Sabbath post because I didn't have a lot to add to the "Dairy Queen Summit". I didn't realize until I read your comment that what I've been studying totally applies! Duh!