I think God prepared me for what it means to be “separate” because it definitely becomes a major point in my life today. I, for one, am thankful for the ability to “separate” myself from what may be considered the “peer” group following. From a child, my mother cared little about what I thought or felt in order for me to “fit in” with the kids in school. I’ll share a point or two. Mother bought her sons white socks while it was not fashionable for kids to wear them especially if you wore dress shoes to school, which is what we did back then. I remember at the age of 11 during my sixth grade, I saved my money to buy a pair of the newly desired, coveted “silk” socks and would hide her socks in the woods praying they would be there when I went to recover them. I wanted to look like everyone else, and my mother didn’t buy me anything but oxford shoes until the day came I could purchase my own. While other kids bought their lunch, I was carrying mine. Being “poor” tends to cause separation among people.
Later, I learned a valuable lesson from her and that was, “Stop following the crowd. Be a leader and have people following you.” Now learning the lesson and initiating the advice are two different things but I learned to set my own pace, stand tall in the face of conflict, and learn to think for myself regardless of what others may think or say.
God, too, caused His people to be separate. Many think the separation comes about because of who you are and not by what you do, but the two are actually brought about by one common event—the Sabbath. The Sabbath becomes not only what you do but it is who you become, in God. God’s people are called to be different, separate, holy, sanctified and this is achieved by the Sabbath because it is the only created difference given the same characteristics than the other days of the week. Long before there was a holy people, a separate people, there was a holy and separate day. When sin came into the world and man chose to worship according to his own desire, he would separate himself from God’s prescribed and commanded method of worship, so it didn’t matter what we thought, wanted or desire because if we didn’t do what God asked us to do, then no matter what you did would count. None of it. You had to join with God’s people in order to be God’s people thereby worshiping in the proper spirit and truth.
It is safe to say, too, if you do not worship in the way God has commanded, then your worship is in vain. It also safe to say if your worship is in vain, you are classified along with those who don’t care to worship at all! You cannot believe your customs, or traditions should commend you to God because you want to give Him honor and it will be accepted if it is not in the way He has chosen for us to do so. This is why the call—soon, will be given for those who desire to be saved, to separate themselves from those who are worshiping in error, custom and traditionally which is not what God commanded in the beginning. This is easily determined by answering the following question: Do you keep the Fourth Commandment of God? In other words, if you are having your congregational worship on Sunday, then your worship is in vain and you need to separate yourself from those following the crowd and join with God’s people who are in keeping with the Commandment. Now, this does not mean God’s people are perfect, righteous within themselves because we are all striving to make it in, but one cannot continue doing opposite of God’s command and think what you are doing will be acceptable because God is not a double-minded God. It is NOT ALL RIGHT to give Him your best, when your worst is more acceptable as long as it is His prescribed manner.
Ask Cain how that worked out for him!
December 26, 2015