Divine Deliverance

Observe the Sabbath day by keeping it holy, as the Lord your God has commanded you.  Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the Lord your God … Remember that you were slaves in Egypt and that the Lord your God  brought you out of there with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm.  Therefore the Lord your God has commanded you to observe the Sabbath day.  Deuteronomy 5:12-13, 15

Here’s the logic of the Sabbath command in Deuteronomy:  Don’t revive what God has removed. ~ Mark Buchanan, The Rest of God: Restoring Your Soul by Restoring Sabbath

The command to Sabbath reiterated in Deuteronomy comes with a new understanding, a reminder for the Isrealites and for us.   God reminds them of their time in Egypt, of their inability to rest, the labor that consumed them as slaves.  While the Sabbath command in Exodus points toward following the example of God, the instruction in Deuteronomy points to divine deliverance.

Divine deliverance.  That’s the phrase Buchanan uses in his book (p. 87) and I love it.   Haven’t we all experienced divine deliverance from the bondage of slavery?  Paul speaks to our delivery from slavery in his letter to the Romans:

But thanks be to God, that you who were once slaves of sin have become obedient from the heart to the standard of teaching to which you were committed, and, having been set free from sin, have become slaves of righteousness. {Romans 6:17-18}

We are freed from the slavery of sin … delivered from the tyranny of the urgent, from the oppressive nature of our culture.   Instead, we find ourselves slaves of righteousness, commanded not only to labor in His vineyard but also to rest in His still pastures.

Why, then, do we resist this Sabbath command?  What binds to the slavery of chaos and busy-ness and speed?

Again, speaking from my own experience, it’s wrapped up in selfishness … a desire to be the best, to do the most, to have more.  Speed always focuses on me; slow always rests in God.

Will you accept the gift of divine deliverance?  And will you choose to obey the Sabbath command?   What would this look like in your life?

5 Replies to “Divine Deliverance”

  1. Love the quote Speed always focuses on me; slow always rests in God. Now that will stay with me! I did tweet this post too. Thanks for sharing your words!

    1. Teri Lynne Underwood says: Reply

      Thank you … such hard posts to write … deeply convicting.

  2. This is one of the loveliest descriptions of the Sabbath as gift that I’ve ever read.

    1. Teri Lynne Underwood says: Reply

      Many thanks.

  3. […] Divine Deliverance … Why, then, do we resist this Sabbath command?  What binds us to the slavery of chaos and busy-ness and speed? Again, speaking from my own experience, it’s wrapped up in selfishness … a desire to be the best, to do the most, to have more.  Speed always focuses on me; slow always rests in God. […]

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