The fourth commandment is about the Sabbath. It is sandwiched between these two statements:
1Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy.
2…the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy.
Holy means set apart. The Sabbath was set apart for Him. On the Sabbath, His people were not to work. God had rested on the seventh day of creation week, not because He was tired, but because He was establishing a principle.
In Hebrews 4, we’re told that those who believe enter into God’s rest. Verses 9-11 say, “So then, there remains a Sabbath rest for the people of God, for whoever has entered God’s rest has also rested from his works as God did from his. Let us, therefore, strive to enter that rest, so that no one may fall by the same sort of disobedience.”
While Jesus fulfilled the Law for us, setting us free from the law of sin and death so that we are no longer bound under its requirements, He also makes a way for us to fulfill this Sabbath commandment (Romans 7:6, Romans 8:2).
Our righteousness comes from Christ, but it’s not just ethereal righteousness; we’re given the power over sin to live righteously, to live actually righteous lives.
While we don’t have to avoid long walks and carrying things on Saturdays, we do need to enter into God’s rest that we’re offered through the finished work of Jesus. He accomplished the work of our salvation so that we can rest in our salvation. It’s not something we have to work to earn. We can just receive it.
The verses from Hebrews say that entering God’s rest is for those who believe and that we can fail to do so by disobedience. Never forget that the two go together. Truly believing results in obeying. Unbelief results in disobedience.
If you ever find your actions revealing unbelief, there is something you can do about it. Stop and repent. Seek God. He promises to be found by those seeking Him.
It shouldn’t turn you to the bondage of discouragement, but towards freedom in Christ.