“SABBATH – Here’s Your Sign” – Feb 7

February 7, 2014

“Above all you shall keep my Sabbaths, for this is a sign between me and you throughout your generations, that you may know that I, the Lord, sanctify you.”  Exodus 31:13

Cover of "Here's Your Sign"

Bill Engvall is a comedian best known for his “Here’s Your Sign” comedy routine.  His routine rests on the premise that stupid people need to wear signs that just say, “I’m Stupid”.  That way we won’t rely on them.   We wouldn’t ask them anything.  It would be like, “Excuse me…oops, never mind. I didn’t see your sign.”  I don’t know if it is funny or sad that his stories are mostly true.  Here are a couple links to Bill Engvall’s routine:

Bill Engvall – Stupid People
BILL ENGVALL – Here’s Your Sign

 My friends and I have very ungraciously followed Bill Engvall’s lead with each other.  Maybe it is a guy thing, but there is nothing quite like the joy of making your buddy feel like an idiot.  It has become a rare occurrence for a stupid statement to escape the recognition of a “sign” in various forms, which got me to wondering how many times the angels have thought “Here’s your sign” when God’s people have done some horrendously stupid thing.

Why would any of us need a sign to remember
that it is the Lord who has sanctified us?

God gave the Sabbath as a sign between me and you.  It was a sign to remind them that God had distinguished them from all other people. I find it difficult to see how the need of the Sabbath can be viewed as a compliment.  It is like God saying:

“In a manner of a week, you will start to forget about me… here’s your sign.”

“I can part the Red Sea but you will turn away when you get hungry… here’s your sign.”

“I visibly descended upon a mountain but you made a golden calf when my prophet was delayed… here’s your sign.”

“I defeated the army of Egypt but when you see some big people you doubt my ability… here’s your sign.”

Some think that the observance of the Sabbath was only for those under the old covenant and that we don’t need a Sabbath since we are under the new covenant.  I can only speak for myself but I need to be reminded of the sanctifying work of my Savior more regularly than I care to admit.  I need to be grounded and refocused on the gospel of Jesus Christ at least once a week and often more frequently than that.

The purpose of the Sabbath as a reminder that God has set me apart is still necessary.

“In the course of a week, I can be swamped by the cares of the world…here’s my sign.”

“God has transformed my life but when I suffer a bit and I am quick to grumble… here’s my sign.”

“God has forgiven all my sin but when I struggle with temptation, I can start to doubt… here’s my sign.”

The fact that I need Sunday to remind me of who I am in Christ and what He has done for me is not a compliment.  It frustrates me that I still do spiritually idiotic things.  However, I am thankful that God continues to love an idiotic sinner such as me.

He loves me enough to give me signs for my own good.  He does not give me a sign to make me feel like an idiot.  He gives me a sign because I am an idiot and He lovingly has given me what I need to stay close to Him.  The Sabbath is a gift that every child of God needs because we are all prone to devalue the sanctifying work of Christ.  May we thankfully accept His gift in acknowledgement of who we really are and what we really need.

We all need our Sabbath more than we need a free weekend
…Here’s your sign.

PRAYER: Lord, thank you for knowing what I need and giving it to me.  Forgive me for not seeing that a weekly day of rest is a gift from you.  Forgive me for not recognizing that the Sabbath is for my good.  Thank you for this sign.  Thank you for giving me signs in my life that are intended to keep me close to you.  Keep me from becoming legalistic about them.  Help me to always value the loving giver behind the gifts that you have given me.   I pray this in the precious name of your Son,  Jesus Christ.   Amen.

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  1. The label “Sabbath” is Jewish and doesn’t actually have a Christian counterpart per se. Those who try to find Sabbath bound on Christians come up short. Daryl, to answer your question, we probably ought to ask Jesus! 🙂 It is all about loving 1 – God and 2 – people. Now, even if we’re talking about Sunday, which is no Sabbath at all, there are things that supersede “keeping it.”

    If we recommit to keeping Saturday as Jews, we might as well recommit in futility to following all the Law.

    Invite me to consider more, or even more regular, rest if you sense that I need it. But Sunday as legal Sabbath? Do we really think we shouldn’t stack wood or unload the dishwasher or mop the floor or lift my horse out of a ditch or change my oil in the afternoon or (gasp) catch up on a couple hours of work, in order to make my Monday feel a little less crazed?

    The principle I perceive in this post is certainly on target. Maintaining signs and symbols to remind us of God, when in perspective. What’s important is that we appropriate the *principles* of setting apart, rest, being conscious of God’s work, etc. Sunday is indeed a special day, but it is not a Sabbath. I would invite readers of this blog who disagree to consider the 8-point list near the top of this post: http://blcasey.wordpress.com/2011/03/15/the-sabbath-not-a-christian-doctrine/

  2. Reblogged this on Carolyn's Photography Spot.

  3. Reblogged this on quirkywritingcorner and commented:
    I really like the twist JD put on this. God has given us many signs over the ages, yet we often still fail to see them.

  4. I liked everything EXCEPT that he thinks Sunday is Sabbath

    The seventh day is the SABBATH.

    I think forgetting GOD knows when HE wants to be worship should be his sign

  5. The sabbath reminds me I’ve done enough and I need to leave room for God and trust him to finish it.

  6. JD, this is a powerful reminder of our shortcomings and how we are. Why would anyone want to eliminate something (like a Sabbath) that is there to help them? Let us all recommit to keeping the Sabbath holy.

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