And if the peoples of the land bring in goods or any grain on the Sabbath day to sell, we will not buy from them on the Sabbath or on a holy day. And we will forego the crops of the seventh year and the exaction of every debt.
God commanded in the Ten Commandments that his people would honor the Sabbath day. Later in the law, he gave laws about Sabbath years for the land and years of release of debts and slaves. Behind all this was a test of faith. God wanted the people to trust him enough to know that he would provide for them if they chose to obey him and to not work one day a week, to not plant crops one year out of seven, and to release slaves and debts according to his schedule.
The fact that the people are saying that they will follow this law tells you that they in fact had not been following it before. God’s people did not trust him enough to hold off of work, to give up crops, or to release their slaves. They said that they trusted God, but their trust had not yet gotten into the real areas of their lives.
Can you see how you might need to follow this command? We are not under the same sort of Sabbath system as were the people of Israel, but you know what, God still wants our lives to be marked by the same sorts of things. How committed are you to giving one full day of your week to not working, not fulfilling worldly pursuits, but instead to resting and to worshipping your God? Does your schedule reflect a commitment to worship?
Test yourself with one simple issue. Do you make weekly worship a priority? If you were out-of-town, on vacation or business, would you make it a priority to find a place to gather with like-minded believers to worship your Lord? It might actually cause you to have to take an extra 20 minutes to look at the Internet to find a church near where you are staying and to see if that church’s doctrine is biblical. It might actually cause you to have to give up a couple of hours to worship when you could be in the hotel swimming pool.
Let me ask you, what shows God as more glorious? Does it show God as more glorious when you sleep in, or when you come and sing his praise? Does it show God as more glorious when you arrange your schedule to be in worship, or when you say that you are too busy this week? Christians, it is time for many to repent.