I find it interesting when examining the Scriptures regarding the Commandments of God, both in Exodus and Deuteronomy, an important fact is there which is often overlooked. In Exodus before God gives the 10 “words”, He states the fact,
“I am the Lord thy God, which have brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage.” Ex 20:2 (KJV)
The Sabbath is a time meant to reflect on this “deliverance” which will make the total experience of the Sabbath delightful and meaningful.
There are many types of deliverances. If you “spiritualize” and choose to consider the “bondage of sin” and His “salvation via the cross” you will have captured the meaning without the substance. It is my belief, it must be a more personal experience, which if we are willing to be honest to ourselves and others, this truly forms the basis of our witness.
I have many “deliverances” of which I could relate; however, none is more poignant, more openly viewed and felt by people in my circle during the time of my “bondage” was that of addiction to crack cocaine. How does one go from a life of plenty, affluence, and respect to one of lack, poverty and disrespect? And what is worse, one which imprisoning power is so great and seemingly impossible to break and recover! Sure, there have been others who have tried it but it was not their own prison. For them, it would be marijuana, or alcohol, or sex, or food, or sports, or…the list goes on. I cannot address those but I can certainly address what was mine.
When I consider the Sabbath, today, I’m able to reflect on the beginning of “my” creation. How I lived before God glad to have His presence in my life until I, too, bit from the fruit of the forbidden tree. How I hid myself, covered myself with a transparency I could not see. How I was dealt with, suffered greatly and then comes that day of my salvation when the bondage was broken and I was set free to worship and give thanks for having Him do what I was not able to do. The Sabbath comes as a time to remember Bro. Roy’s “personal deliverance”. It also comes as a caution to be careful and to “remember” because by not doing so, there will be the definite temptation to fall backward. Ask Israel how that worked out for them!
A sister reminded me last week of my testimony and how there would be some who can only be saved because of it. How could they if I don’t tell it? How could others if you don’t tell yours? There is no shame with what we have done when we can speak from the platform of victor. There is no shame having eaten a three course meal out of a garbage can. There is no shame when you’ve allowed a man to spread his seed in your mouth or onto your body for a few dollars. There is no shame when you have walked into a walled and gated community having spent time under the direction of the penal system, when you can stand free and freely give the message of how you were delivered! No shame at all. The shame comes when you have known all this and fail to make it into the Kingdom.
Utilize the gift of the Sabbath to remember not only God’s creation but His personal involvement in your life.
October 31, 2015